Ways that Supplements Enhance Muscle Gain & Recovery:
Encourage muscle growth. Stimulating muscle protein synthesis is essential for us to maintain and even gain muscle during times of increased stress, such as intense exercise. Targeted supplements may help delay training fatigue, produce longer muscle contractions, and allow us to train harder, leading to accelerated muscle growth and greater strength.
The hormone testosterone helps us increase muscle mass and boost energy. With age, levels decline, resulting in many of the signs of aging. Fortunately, supplementing with pro-hormones, such as DHEA and androstenedione, which the body converts to testosterone, may help reverse this decline and immediately improve workout intensity, leading to greater muscle gains.
Certain supplements, such as creatine, can also help boost muscle volume so we just plain look bigger and badder. Creatine works by increasing uptake of water and other nutrients by the muscle cells.
Limit muscle breakdown. Like a brick house in a fault zone, our bodies break down proteins through physical activity and metabolism every day. If our diets don't provide sufficient amounts of proteins to help us repair and rebuild, we end up losing muscle: it's called wasting or "catabolism." We don't just lose skeletal muscle; we can also lose proteins in vital organs, including the heart. Anticatabolic supplements, including amino acids, pro-hormones, and adaptogenic herbs, help prevent this breakdown and keep our house rock solid.
Adequate carbohydrates, electrolytes, fluids, and protein are all essential at this stage, as is adequate rest. It can be hard to obtain all these nutrients in the right amounts during recovery, but certain products, such as HMB, may help.
Preserve the health of joints and connective tissues. Joints are like the shock absorbers of our bodies. Without them, we would vibrate ourselves to pieces with every bump in the trail. They also give us the great range of motion we need to glide through all kinds of sports. Joints are made of cartilage, which is a gel-like tissue composed of about two-thirds water that serves as a major cushioning material. Over time, everyday wear and tear, poor nutrition, injuries, and aging can result in dry, brittle cartilage, which is vulnerable to damage and breakage. Targeted supplements such as glucosamine can help keep cartilage healthy and resilient by attracting and holding water and nutrients within it. These nutrients may also regenerate damaged cartilage to restore joint health and mobility.
Control inflamation. Inflammation is the body's natural way of sealing off an area of injury for repair. However, when too extreme, it can cause more damage and pain than it prevents. Supplements, such as the enzyme bromalain and certain amino acids, can assist the healing process and help control inflammation, so you can work out pain free.