My Supplementation Shopping List
People ask me frequently:
“What are the Supplements that I use and what are my recommendations for Crossfiters”
It is also very frequently, that I answer it in bit evasive way – saying only about Whey Protein.
I do this because I profoundly believe that Nutrition and, especially Supplementation, varies immensely from person to person – organism to organism. Therefore my Supplements can have amazing results for me, but a completely different effect on your body. So it is very important to have professional assistance and make regular exams in order to attest your body real necessity.
But today I decide to complete answer this question, letting you guys know what is in my Supplementation Shopping List. These Supplements have been tested and adapted for more than two years now, always with the supervision of my Nutritionist, specialized in sports performance.
Needless to say that, all the Supplementation in the World can’t help an unbalanced diet.
To remember Crossfit’s nutrition maxim:
“Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar.”
The Essentials – Every Day Use
- Probiotic – Taking a Probiotic is a great way to introduce good bacteria into your digestive system and improve gut health. The benefits of a probiotic are seemingly endless, but to summarize: helps reduce inflammation, reduce allergies, increase nutrient absorption and contribute to immune function. This is a special tip especially for the ladies, that often have gut related problems. This has really changed my life. If your poop routine is a problem this is a “must have” in your Shopping Cart.
- Fish Oil – Our modern diet tends to have too much of Omega 6 fats, which pushes our natural physiological balance towards a more inflammatory process. Omega 3 is, however, an anti-inflammatory fat that unfortunately is less common in our day-to-day diet. In order to restore the inflammation balance, it is highly recommended to daily supplement our diet with Omega 3, especially those types with more DHA than EPA. This Supplement has shown huge benefits into cholesterol control, heart health and the maintenance of our cognitive functions.
- Chlorella – Chlorella is a green freshwater algae. It is very common in the Japanese culinary for centuries, and has an immense nutritional value – in a few grams of Chlorella you can find high doses of protein, omega 3 and several minerals and vitamins essential to our body function. But the most important benefit from Chlorella is its detox function. The modern food is frequently full of heavy metals and chemicals products that will inevitably accumulate in our body. Chlorella not only aid on the disposal of these materials, but also can help our body deal with the effect of overall pollution!
- Spirulin – It is one of the most popular supplements in the world because of its natural origin and multi benefits. Beyond being a complete source of proteins, iron and complex B vitamins, it has a huge and attested effect on lowering our body natural inflammatory and oxidant process. And for Crossfiters there are some recent studies showing that Spirulin can help improve muscular endurance and reduce fatigue effects.
Consumed in some periods of the year after exams
- Vitamin D– Deficiency in Vitamin D is one of the most common deficiencies in the modern diet. A normal level of Vitamin D results in an increased mental function, bone and immune-system overall health. It can also reduce the risks of cancer, heart disease and some metabolic diseases. I usually take when it is winter time, because of the low sun exposure time, with vitamin K and my Omega 3 in order to help my organism absorb it.
- ZMA– Zinc is an antioxidant and immune-boosting supplement. It is lost through sweat, so you can imagine it is very important for a Crossfitter. Magnesium is an essential dietary mineral, and the second most prevalent electrolyte in the human body. It is unfortunately very common to have deficiency in Magnesium due to low intake of nuts and vegetables. But the main benefit of the Magnesium for a Crossfiter is to low our body soreness and fatigue. I usually supplement with the electrolyte effervescent capsules.
Every Day Use
- Whey Protein – My absolute favorite performance related supplement, because it helps take my necessary amount of protein in the day, and it is the only thing I can eat right after the workout! Whey also helps to build muscle fiber and recover from workouts.
- Carbs – My post workout Whey comes usually with a dose of Carb. They are our bodies main source of energy and critical in athletic performance and recovery, especially for high intensity exercise as Crossift. Consuming carbs during and after your workouts maintains and refuels glycogen stores in your muscles, enabling you to workout longer and harder. And in my case, it has increased (a lot!) the ratio of lean body mass #gainz. I usually use oats or Palatinose as my post workout Carb source.
- BCAA – There are 20 different amino acids that make up the thousands of different proteins in the human body. Nine of the 20 are considered essential amino acids, meaning they cannot be made by your body and must be obtained through your diet. Of the nine essential amino acids, three are the branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs): leucine, isoleucine and valine. They have innumerous benefits, such as: increase of muscle growth, decrease of muscle soreness, fatigue reduction and prevention of muscle breakdown. I drink while I am training.
Only Before Competitions
- Creatine – Creatine is a molecule that can rapidly produce energy (ATP), supplementing with it increases power output, work capacity and muscle growth. It has other great benefits as well, such as increasing brain function, bone density and liver health. It does not show its effects immediately, so I usually do a saturation before competitions.
- Beta-Alanine– Beta-Alanine has a great effect on cardio-metabolic conditioning. It has been shown to enhance muscular endurance, with multiple rep increase over baseline in the range of 8-15 repetitions. I also take only before competitions in a form of saturation.
- Beet Juice– Finally, the white rabbit of my hat and my favorite pre-competition trick is Beet Juice. Yes, you read that right. Beet juice has been shown to significantly increase time to exhaustion during exercise due to its nitrate content. Natural, tasty and amazingly simple!
If you have any questions about this topic, ask Your Coaches in the BASIS!