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Muscle Sport Magazine

Starting Out With Sports Supplements

By Andrew Parker – For those new to the sport of bodybuilding knowing which sports supplements to use can be a difficult choice as the range is vast. Understanding the basics can make the decision a more straightforward process by taking the mystery out of the products on offer.

First consider the reason for using supplements, as opposed to relying on diet alone for all your nutritional needs. Building muscle puts extra demands on the body, which may not necessarily be met by food alone. Protein is required for growth and repair and in particular protein sources that contain all essential amino acids are most valuable for building strength and mass. The most complete proteins are thought to be casein, soy and whey protein. Finding such complete proteins from diet alone can be challenging.

Quality is also an important factor and many athletes have concerns about farmed protein sources containing unnecessary chemicals. Using a protein powder to supplement the diet ensures you are eating a quality form of protein that has no harmful substances, but also provides the body with the necessary nutrients in a convenient form.

Convenience is a major factor in the decision to use sports supplements. By ingesting a protein supplement in liquid form the body can digest the nutrient quickly, ensuring its rapid transport to the muscles. It is easy to prepare and take with you to the gym and can be taken before and after exercise for maximum benefits.

Although there are various sport supplements on the market the most popular remains protein powder and it is an excellent choice when starting out. Of all the different protein powders on the market, whey protein is the most popular as it is high in protein, containing high levels of essential amino acids and the highest amount of cysteine, whilst being low in fat and carbohydrates. It also has no known side effects and helps boost the immune system.

Whey protein powder differs to meal replacement products which offer a convenient way to receive quality protein balanced with carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals, all geared toward muscle development. These differ to straight protein powder supplements which are designed for use before and after exercise, rather than as a meal replacement.

Take sports supplements as a supplement rather than as the main nutrition source and use them to balance your whole regime, instead of making them the focus of your bodybuilding plan. They can help quicken the process of muscle building if used in moderation and with respect.

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