Ask any gym trainer, and they will, in all likelihood recommend that you take a multivitamin before and after workout. Certain supplements taken when you workout aid in muscle recovery, build body mass and even help in weight loss. So let us take a look at some of the best supplements for working out and losing weight.
1. Omega 3 essential fatty acids
Take fish oil and/or flaxseeds supplements. These are rich in Omega 3 essential fatty acid which fights inflammation. If you are working out, you need to take care of your joints, and omega 3 essential fatty acids can aid in this. These days, special joint supplements are also available for athletes and people who train seriously. Take these 2-3 times a day (morning, post workout and last thing at night) or as advised by your trainer. You need to take 1-3 tsp (1-3 grams) of fish oil daily or at least 220mg of EPA and 220 mg of DHA daily.
Majority of the pre and post workout (before cardio) supplements contain this vital nutrient. You need it for recovery of muscles as it also prevents aches and pains. Take at least 300-500 mg of Glucosamine once a day but it is best to speak to your doctor before doing so. This is because; glucosamine is known to increase blood sugar and also cause side effects like nausea, hair loss etc.
3. Vitamin E
There is a great debate about taking Vitamin E after workout. However, most experts believe that we have this vitamin in our body but if it is not sufficient, it will not aid in post workout strengthening. So if you are deficient in Vitamin E, you definitely need to take its supplements. You need a dose of at least 400 IU daily.
4. B vitamins
B complex vitamins are the most important supplements for working out and losing weight as they increase energy levels and neurotransmitter cofactors. This plays an important role in improving mood, prevent binge eating and also aid in detox that enhances your workout. The process of building and repairing muscles depletes B vitamins, so if you are doing weights, you must take B complex pills daily. This will help you rebuild the muscles. Choose a good B complex pill from a top brand. You can also eat B vitamin rich foods like meat, eggs, leafy greens, fortified cereals etc.
Athletes and people who workout daily, need Magnesium for regulating heart rhythm and allowing muscles to contract and relax. Magnesium also reduces blood pressure and is needed for ATP (adenosine triphosphate which is needed for energy transfers between cells). Take half of your daily dosage of Magnesium immediately after workout. (You need at least 200mg/50lb of body weight of Magnesium). Ideally, you can take calcium and magnesium 2-3 times a day in divided doses.
Taking leucine will help you keep your strength and also aid in recovery post workout. Older weightlifters should definitely take leucine in order to heal quickly. Serous lifters need to consume 2.5 grams of leucine or 5g of branched chain amino acids within 30 minutes of working out. One must also drink a post workout protein shake with 5g of leucine and another 5 grams before sleep to enhance recovery.
Protein is the most important supplement for muscle building. It is especially needed for weight lifters as this activity can tear muscles. Protein aids in muscle recovery and repair. If you take protein supplements within 10 minutes of training session, you can reduce cortisol hormones and stress hormones as well.
8. Vitamin C
If you are wondering what supplements to take during and after cardio when working out or trying to lose weight, vitamin C is your answer. Many trainers advise eating an orange after workout. Some advise taking 4000mg to 6000 mg per day with a total of 16000mg per day. ( Take at least 500-1000 mg 45 minutes before training).
9. CoQ10 enzyme
Ubiquinone is the most usable form of coenzyme Q10 which is recommended for serious trainers, weight lifters and athletes as well as people taking statin drugs. Apart from aiding in heart health, COQ10 plays a vital role in muscle recovery and increased energy production. Do not take this supplement at night.
- Glutamine- Take 10-20 grams after every workout. On non training days, take before bedtime.
- Zinc- Take this in the evening with other vitamins. You need at least 30 mg.
- Vitamin D3- Take this twice a day with other vitamins.
- Creatine-Load up at start of the program and stay on a maintenance dose.
Naturally, you do not need all of these supplements. A good joint support and multivitamin supplement will cover most basics. Talk to your trainer/doctor about the right supplements to take.