When you search for muscle-building supplements in a health store or on the Internet, you find yourself faced with a confusing and overwhelming array of products, all making competing claims. Whether you are interested in weight lifting and body building, or just want to improve your muscle tone, you need some guidance as to which product to choose. Obviously you cannot take them all. In addition, they are expensive, so you need to be sure you are getting value for money. So how do you know what are the best supplements for building muscle?
For many experts in body building, the number one muscle-building supplement is considered to be whey protein powder. Protein is the building block of muscle, and protein powders are the easiest way to take it. It is recommended to take 1-2 grams of protein per day per pound of body weight. As well as whey, there are other protein powders including egg, casein and soy, but whey protein is seen as the most effective for several reasons. It is the fastest to digest, the quickest to reach your muscles and bloodstream, and is the richest source of essential amino acids and branch chain amino acids. Whey protein is best taken as a drink, about two hours after your workout. It is important to note that you must be careful not to overdose on protein, as this could seriously harm your liver and kidneys.
The other most frequently recommended muscle-building supplement is creatine. Creatine is such an effective muscle builder that athletes call it “the legal alternative to steroids.” It is stored in the body as phosphocreatine or creatine phosphate. This helps to make ATP (adenosine tri-phosphate) which is the source of energy for the muscles. Creatine is said to have immediate and noticeable effects in increasing muscle strength and lean muscle mass, as well as raising energy levels.
These two are widely regarded as the best supplements for building muscle, but there are other supplements that are also thought to be very valuable. One of these is glutamine, which is the body’s most widely used amino acid. This helps rapid muscle building and prevents muscle loss. Others that are frequently recommended are nitric oxide supplements. Nitric oxide dilates the blood vessels, thus ensuring smoother blood flow and a quick blood surge known a “pump”. In addition it provides increased stamina and faster recovery from exhaustion, and enhances the performance of all vital organs including brain, kidneys, heart and liver.
When working on a body building program, it is important to have 5-6 healthy meals a day. If time prevents you from cooking a proper meal, you can substitute two or three meals at most with meal replacement powders. These are similar to whey protein powders but contain a range of additional nutrients, so they will also contribute to muscle building. However, it is essential to remember that supplements are just that – that is, they are intended to supplement a healthy diet and lifestyle, not replace them. Provided you remember to eat healthy meals and eradicate junk food, processed meals and sugary foods and drinks, you will find these products are the best supplements for building muscle.