Eat more, supplement less!

Browsing the web you can see all kinds of supplements from pre-workout stimulants, post-workout recovery, etc. I probably get requests to sell these supplements about 2-4 times a month. I’ve worked at 2 different nutrition stores years ago and have seen EVERYTHING under the sun when it comes to powders, pills and bars. We have to realize that losing weight or adding muscle isn’t always considered “healthy”.

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My biggest issue training high school kids is their everyday diet. Most skip breakfast, lunch consists of a bag of chips and a Gatorade and diner might be a decent meal or fast food. Today’s young athletes are missing fruits, vegetables, fiber, protein and raw ingredients.

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Then we have the overly used stimulants such as NO Xplode or C4. These supplements are taken way too much for high school kids. These stimulants are giving kids a false sense of energy and can be quite dangerous with kids who might have undiagnosed cardiac issues.
There are also large pyramid companies that have deep pockets and now have big named athletes to support their products. We can look at these supplements and see the holes that are missing and why we should be eating whole foods. One of these products is a Post Workout Recovery Sports Drink. The first protein ingredient is Soy Protein. 90%-95% of all Soy produced in the US is genetically modified. GMO’s have a long list of negative interactions with humans. Soy has also been proven to disrupt hormones and cause miscarriages according to a study in 2009 preformed on rats. (http://www.foodconsumer.org/newsite/Safety/gmo/genetically_modified_soy_diets_0910100128.html)
Another questionable product is a Post-exercise Restore supplement. First ingredient is Vitamin A in the Beta Carotene form which has 2,200 IU per pill. Although this is a good form of Beta Carotene, the recommended dosage according to Dr. Weil, who is a leader in natural medicine, is about 14,000 IU (http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/ART02759/facts-about-vitamin-a) That’s about 7 pills at a time! The third vitamin listed is Vitamin E in the DL-Alpha Tocopheryl form which is a synthetic form. The DL form is cheap and is only 50% absorbed by the human body at most. (http://www.med.nyu.edu/content?ChunkIID=21476) Why would we consume anything synthetic?!?!
I only recommend one supplement and that is a protein recovery shake called Rockin Refuel.

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I’m sure there are better shakes out there but there are 3 things I look for when recommending a product. First, the ease of use, they are already made. Second, the carb to protein ratio, which is 2:1. Third, it’s fairly natural. Derived from cows and it isn’t sitting in a warehouse for months on end, it has to be refrigerated. There are multiple studies showing regular chocolate milk is a superior post recovery product over other commercial products. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19234590)
I make no commission nor do I get paid for selling them. In fact, I’ve given up the chance to create an extra source of revenue to sell pyramid type supplements just based on the fact that I can’t support a product that I don’t believe in.
As a culture we must look at what we put in our bodies. It’s hard for us to eat perfect but we can start with limiting or not even using supplements. Try to consume as much food and protein as you can through food. Eat organic, eat natural. Support your local farmer by buying local. Ask them questions about the raising of livestock and growing of crops. Stop relying on powders and pills to reach your health goals and start doing it the right way……through food!