Monday, February 27, 2012

Cyndee’s Supplement Recommendations

I spent many years (17) working in the vitamin industry before working full-time as a trainer.  I would like to give you some of my top recommendations for supplements.
Foundational Supplements
·         Multiple Vitamin
o   General – for women and men I like a few brands
§  Nature’s Way Alive multiple (take 3 a day) or if you don’t want to take pills you can get the liquid
§  Alive multiple vitamin has specialty formulas for women, men, seniors.  These are good options
§  If you want a one a day try Natrol’s One A Day formula called My Favorite Multiple.  Check packages carefully because they make several and they all look very similar.
§  GNC also makes a few good multiple vitamins.  One a day the Ultra Mega is good.   Women’s and Men’s specific formulas are good too but you will be required to take 2 pills a day.
§  Life Extension has some really great formulas.  The best formula they have is Life Extension Mix.  This is one of the most comprehensive multiple vitamins you can buy.  You will need to take 9 a day!  I tell people to take 3 pills with each meal.  It is great but expensive and you need to take a lot of pills.  You may be able to eliminate some of the other nutrients you take separately if you take this vitamin. 
·         Keep these things in mind when taking a multiple vitamin
o   Most times multiple vitamins come with or without iron.  Men and seniors most times do not need a multiple vitamin with iron. 
o   If the multiple vitamin you take requires you to take more than one a day you should take them separately. 
o   Always take them with food.
·         Ubiquinol – CoQ10
o   When taking CoQ10 always buy the form called Ubiquinol and you can find this on the back label. 
o   Take between 100-300mg a day.
·         Fish Oils
o   Make sure you buy a reputable brand.  AVOID buying these at the grocery store, WallMart, Costco, or Sams Club.  Buy these at a health food store.
o   Good brands are Carlson, Nordic Naturals, Natures Way, New Chapter. 
o   If you repeat (burp) fish oil after taking it then buy one that is enteric coated.  I use Fisol by Natures Way.  I take 2-3 a day. 
Supplements for specific needs:
·         Zyflammend by New Chapter for inflammation
o   Take this 2 times a day for maintenance
o   If you have pain or inflammation then you can take up to 6 a day (two with each meal).
·         Multi-Mineral – There are many of these available.  Men can get these without iron.  One that I use is called Mezo-trace.  This does have a minimal amount of iron. 
·         Glucosamine, Chondroitin and MSM for joints
o   Always look for a product that has Glucosamine Hydrochloride NOT Sulfate.  Most Glucosamine is sulfate. Natrol makes Hydrochloride.
o   1500mg of Glucosamine and 1200 mg of Chondroitin
o   These are good to take if you have been diagnosed with degeneration in the joints or arthritis.  You will need to take this for at least 4-6 months before you may notice any difference. 
·         Phosphatidylserine (PS) – this has a few different reasons why I recommend it.
o   It is great for brain health  - probably the best supplement out there for brain health
o   It is also good for reducing cortisol levels.  Cortisol is a hormone that we all have in our body in small quantities.  If you work out a lot or are under a lot of stress you may have too much cortisol in your body.  You can actually get blood tests to check for sure.  Too much cortisol can cause many negative things to happen in your body.  It can cause muscle breakdown, sleeplessness, weight gain around the mid section, and fatigue.  PS will help reduce your cortisol levels.
o   Take between 300-500mg a day
·         Branched Chain Amino Acids
o   Great for recovery
o   Best taken on empty stomach
·         Glutamine
o   Great for recovery
o   Best taken on empty stomach
o   Take powder form 5 grams a day and you can mix with a little bit of juice or Gatorade
·         Tranquil Sleep by Natural Factors
o   If you have trouble sleeping this is a great product
·         Women’s Specific Needs
o  Calcium – Take in the form of Calcium Citrate and take with magnesium and Vitamin D
o   Iron – if you are prone to anemia.  I take Gentle Iron by Twinlab
·         Men’s Specific
o   For prostrate health Saw Palmetto
o   New Chapter’s formula called Prostrate 5x is a good formula
·         Season Specific
o   If you always get sick then take Source Natural Wellness Formula seasonally
o   If you feel like you are getting sick – the first signs
§  Emergenc powder mixed with your water
§  Zicam
§  Oil of Oregano
·         Skin Health
o   Acne-
§  Zinc but don’t take more than 100 mg a day.  Usually a 50mg supplement in addition to what is in your multiple vitamin is sufficient
§  Vitamin A – take 10,000-30,000 IU for about one month then only take 10,000 IU daily
o   Hyaluronic Acid – great for responsible for the skin's moisture, suppleness, and elasticity
Supplements During Exercise
·         Heed is by Hammer Nutrition and is a good supplement for shorter workouts.  This has some carbohydrates but not much simple sugar. It also contains some electrolytes.
·         Perpetum by Hammer Nutrition is great for workouts over 90 minutes. It has more calories than the Heed.
·         Carbo Pro – They have two products that I use
o   The regular product called Carbo Pro. This is just maltodextrin which is a complex carbohydrate.  This has no flavor so I add a little bit of powdered Gatorade.  I don’t want too much sugar from the Gatorade so I don’t add too much.  I also add endurolyte powder to get my electrolytes.
o   The other product they offer Hydra C5.  This is a combination of maltodextrin and dextrose.  I have only used this product a few times but so far I like it.
·         Roctane Ultra Endurance Energy Drink by GU
o   I have not used this product but some people find it works well for them.  It does contain caffeine which I don’t like to take in my drink during exercise.  I will do a gel with caffeine but not more than 2 of those for a long event.  You need to be careful not to take in too many different products that contain caffeine.
·         Know what you like then make it yourself through a great product called Infinit Nutrition –
·         Short workouts – you can use electrolyte fizz products.  Many companies make these.  Hammer and NUUN are two of the popular brands.  You add a tablet to your water.
·         Additional products –
o   As mentioned before to get additional electrolytes I use endurolytes. They come in pill or powder form and should be taken during exercise.
·         Gels, Blocks and Chomps are all great ways to get quick carbohydrates.  Make sure you take all of these with water.  Also check labels to make sure you are not getting too much caffeine.  As I mentioned before I don’t do more than two caffeinated gels for a long workout over 5 hours.  Too much caffeine can cause stomach distress and dehydration. 
When deciding what drink, bar or gel to have during your workout it is important to experiment during training.  Don’t ever try anything new race day.  You will find something that works best for you.  Everyone is different so what works for me may not be the ideal thing for you.


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