** This week’s contributor is William Munir from CogniTune.com. **
Getting yourself on a regime is one of the most successful ways to get healthy while staying focused and energized.
Whether you’re aiming to lose weight, lower your cholesterol, or bulk up, consistency and a good routine is key.
Most beginners harp on their workout routine by planning their weekly workout classes, cardio days, etc., and dwelling on their persistence and dedication to calorie burning.
What most beginners don’t take into account is that matching your workout system with a nutritional regime is just as, if not more important. Burning calories isn’t enough to make your health goals, you need to pair that with balanced meals and supplements where necessary.
Everyone knows that protein is an essential part of a diet, but most don’t know how much they should be consuming daily.
The average sedentary man should eat around 56 grams of protein a day, while a sedentary woman, about 46 grams a day. This doesn’t take into account any working out or ranges in weight and muscle makeup. Without counting protein grams, a lot of people lack the intake their body needs, especially those hitting the gym.
Whey protein supplementation is one of the easiest ways to get the protein you need before and after a workout. Whey protein is a specific protein that contains essential amino acids and is known for aiding in muscle gain, weight loss, and increasing overall strength.
Whey is the liquid part of left over after cheese is produced. After more processing, it’s made into the powder form used in shakes and smoothies. Make sure to read the ingredient list and check that there aren’t any added refined sugars in the flavoring. Drinking a whey protein shake can add 25-50 grams of protein on top of your daily food intake.
Whey protein can be found in cheese, milk, and yogurt.
Creatine is naturally produced in the body, but is safe for supplemental consumption as well. It’s used to produce ATP energy and enhance cellular functions.
Creatine is known for helping the brain, liver, bones, and muscles. Though it benefits cognitive as well as heart function, creatine is mostly used for bursts of energy, muscle recovery, and speed.
If your workout routine includes fast-paced cardio, or intense weight lifting, creatine may be the supplement for you. This supplement should not be used for the sole purpose of losing weight (because that is not one of its many benefits).
Muscle gain can lead to weight gain, even if your waist is slimming down. Creatine should be taken on a regime that includes intense workouts, and the desire to become faster and stronger.
Aside from supplement form, creatine can be found in protein-rich foods like meat and fish.
Fish oils have gained popularity in the last couple years. They’re taken as a source of omega-3 fats for those who don’t get enough in their normal diet.
These pills can be taken in your regime for overall heart and bodily health, not necessarily to target weight loss or muscle growth. Similar fats are found in red meats and eggs, but those are omega 6 fats, and don’t carry the same beneficial elements as omega 3’s do.
Fish oils can be related to healthy blood vessels, a lower lipid count, a lower risk for plaque build up, and therefore fights against diabetes, heart disease, and even some cancers.
This supplement has nothing to do with a workout or weight loss regime, but is rather an additional way to support your overall health.
Most people follow the 1gram daily dose at any time of the day. Those who have a diet rich in fish don’t need the extra omega 3 fats.
Vitamins, Minerals & The Foods You Can Find Them In
Vitamins and minerals are essential for proper bodily function. The essential ones can be found in foods that can easily be worked into your diet.
If you know where they can be found, and what they do for you, it’s a good idea to take them into consideration the next time you go food shopping.
Working these nutrients into your regime will be beneficial for your overall health.
- Found in carrots, sweet potatoes, and melons
- Good for teeth, skin, eyes, and overall good body development
- Found in unprocessed foods like grains, beans, potatoes, lentils, and yeast
- Good supplement for iron intake, energy booster, and immune system
- Found in oranges, peppers, kiwi, strawberries, and other fruits and vegetables
- Good supplement for iron intake, antioxidant source, and skin health
- Absorbed from time in the sun, or eating eggs, mushrooms, and fish
- Good for strong bones
- Found in nuts (especially almonds), sunflower seeds, and tomatoes
- Good for protection against free radicals that are harmful to the body, as well as blood circulation
- Found in seeds, nuts, lentils, peas, some fruits, greens, and other vegetables
- Aids in cell renewal
- Found in cheese, yogurt, and milk
- Good for bones growth and oral hygiene
- Found in red meats, clams, spinach, and some grains
- Iron is good for building muscle mass and maintaining healthy blood
“An Overview of Creatine Supplements”, WebMD, www.webmd.com/men/creatine#1-2
Gunnars, Kris. “Whey Protein 101: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide”, Healthline Media, 22 June 2017, www.healthline.com/nutrition/whey-protein-101#section4
“11 Essential Vitamins and Minerals Your Body Needs”, Goodnet, 25 Apr. 2017, www.goodnet.org/articles/11-essential-vitamins-minerals-your-body-needs