Looking to get a leg up in your workouts, maximizing their effectiveness and ramping up your fitness level? Research suggests these supplements may make a difference in our workout routine:
- B-alanine is naturally found in beef, pork, chicken, turkey, whitefish, and salmon, and may improve athletic performance and reduce muscle tiredness. If supplementation is your choice, the suggested dose is 2,000-6,000 mg per day, in divided doses.
- Creatine is a substance found proportionately less in women and has been suggested to improve muscle strength and athletic performance. The recommended dose is 20 gm per day for 7 days then 2.25-10 gm daily for up to 16 weeks. Recent research also suggests the supplement may be helpful in mood stabilization.
- Dietary Nitrate (NO3) may improve exercise endurance when taken about three hours prior to working out. It’s found in foods like spinach, arugula, celery, beets, and romaine lettuce. In supplements, the recommended dose is 3.7 mg per kg of body weight.
- L-citrulline may improve blood flow when taken before exercise. Foods including watermelon, pumpkin, squash, and chickpeas contain l-citrulline. If you use a supplement, 2.4-5 grams is the recommended dose.
- Leucine is an amino acid that stimulates new muscle synthesis. It’s found in many foods such as chicken, beef, pork, tuna, firm tofu, canned navy beans, milk, ricotta cheese, and pumpkin seeds. The suggested intake is 55 mg of leucine per kg body weight on a daily basis.
When starting any supplement, it may take two-to-four weeks to see results. To understand which supplements work for you, try starting with one option versus taking multiple options simultaneously. When buying and taking supplements, it’s essential to get the recommended dosage but to remember that more is not always better; high doses of supplements can sometimes have detrimental health effects.