Supplements: What to Use and Why

Whey Protein

The main use of a protein supplement is when you are lacking protein in your diet or to speed up recovery by drinking it at the end of a workout. Whey protein contains a range of essential amino acids, which are absorbed quickly by the body.   


Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAA’s)

Branch chain amino acids (Leucine, isoleucine, valine) are the building blocks of protein. They are essential amino acids that your body cannot produce on its own, so they need to be consumed through a diet or through supplementation.

Taking 6-10 grams of BCAAs before your workout can decrease soreness and increase recovery time. It has also been proved that taking branched-chain amino acids, especially leucine, will stimulate protein synthesis. Studies show that Leucine is the most anabolic, or growth promoting, amino acid. Overall, supplementation of BCAAs can help promote muscle growth and repair and reduce muscle soreness after exercise.


Glutamine is an amino acid  used in protein synthesis, supporting muscle growth and also supporting and regulating the immune system. Glutamine is an easily attainable amino acid for people who consume a protein-rich diet. Glutamine can be found in almost all major food groups that are rich in protein such as beef, chicken, fish, eggs, milk, beets and beans. This amino acid is helpful by preventing breakdown in the gastrointestinal tract, which is where 70-80 percent of the body’s immune tissues are located.  It has been proven that glutamine is most beneficial  for those whose goals are to lose fat and maintain muscle.



Creatine is a natural substance that contributes to the production of adenosine triphosphate, also known as ATP. This substance provides energy for muscle contractions, which is vital for weight lifting. In shorter terms, creatine increases the ability to produce energy rapidly to allow a person to train harder. This allows for a slight boost in muscle capabilities, which can translate into bigger and stronger muscles. If an individual’s goal is to increase muscle mass and performance, creatine is proven to be beneficial.


Omega-3 Fish Oil

Omega-3s can not only enhance workout recovery and increase muscular gains, but they are also necessary for cardiovascular, brain, joint, eye and skin health. The body can’t make Omega-3 fatty acids on its own because it must be consumed through a diet consisting of fish, avocados and nuts.  It is important to make sure Omega-3s are prevalent in your diet to decrease muscle breakdown and increase protein synthesis.