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Whether the goal is gaining muscle, losing fat, increasing energy, performance or just maintaining a healthy lifestyle, there are countless effective supplements out there! Wouldn’t it be great if we could try them all, create that perfect stack, have no limit to what we buy. In a perfect world maybe, but for most, one thing stands in the way, money. What if your budget doesn’t allow you to just load up on all the supplements you desire? Well, that’s what we’re here for; to help you prioritise and decide what the best supplements are for you when on a budget.
Deciding what supplements to choose isn’t easy for many. There is a lot of argument as to which supplements are the best and most effective. It is hard to show restraint at times, staying within your budget can be tough, but lets try to take the guess work out. Budgeting isn’t just about buying cheap products; it’s about selecting the right products for your goals and then selecting the ones that will give you the best bang for your buck. It is important to prioritise your goals, taking everything into account and boiling it down to what you really need.
To help you work out what supplements are going to be most effective at the lowest cost we have compiled a list of the top 5, most well rounded, studied and cost effective supplements that will be great additions to your supplement stack.
Protein powders can be great for a wide variety of goals. From a lean whey protein isolate (WPI) to a heavy mass gainer, there is a protein supplement to assist in any goal you set out to achieve. They provide your body with the required amino acids, both essential and non-essential to aid in growth and recovery.
Many people are deficient when it comes to their protein intake. For those who train hard and try to eat right to assist their progress will find a protein powder to be a great nutritional supplement that ensures their protein intake is adequate. Best of all, clean high quality protein powders can be very cost effective per serve, always best to buy in bulk.
Creatine monohydrate is the most studied supplement available on the market today. Creatine monohydrate is very affordable and perfect to throw into your post workout recovery shake.
Creatine monohydrate pulls water into the muscle and will help increase your body’s ability to produce ATP (your body’s energy currency). Over time this will result in increased muscle size and strength output.
There are many new forms of creatine surfacing however you will find that these are often more expensive than creatine monohydrate and are no more effective in increasing the concentration of creatine in the muscles.
Over time our food production has declined as farming practices have become more about quantity over quality. Due to this, we often find ourselves with deficiencies in certain vitamins and minerals that are essential for your daily function.
If our body finds itself in a state of deprivation from these essential vitamins and minerals our performance inside and outside of the gym will be decreased, putting a handbrake on all the progress you have been working so hard to make.
We should always try to eat a wide variety of quality whole foods from each food group however a good multivitamin is always beneficial way to help prevent any potential deficiencies, allowing you to function better and progress more efficiently towards your goals.
Just as we have essential amino acids, we also require essential fatty acids in order to function and survive. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acid ratios are very important in the body, we want a 1:1 ratio, however with our diets being so dominant in omega-6, this ratio is often thrown out of proportion. Fish oil (omega-3) supplementation is recommended to help balance this ratio.
This 1:1 ratio is associated with healthier blood vessels, reduced risk of plaque build up and a lower lipid count. Supplementation of fish oil and other healthy fats helps to prevent inflammation and can also help decrease the risk of diabetes and certain forms of cancer. Healthy fats are also essential for the production of hormones in the body; if your body can’t create the correct hormonal profiles then many bodily systems can be thrown out of balance.
Healthy fats should always be incorporated into the diet through whole food sources but at such a low cost with such a great benefit, the use of a good fatty acid supplement is a great way to ensure you body is in a good place for you to progress towards your goals.
Caffeine is one of the most popular supplements around. It is very effective and doesn’t blow a hole in the budget. Caffeine is commonly seen mixed into our pre-workout and fat burner powders and is often consumed as a pre-workout stimulant to increase mental alertness, focus and exercise performance.
Caffeine is one of those things that should be utilised when needed and as tolerated by the individual. A person’s response to caffeine is very individual and some may see benefits at low dose while others may find themselves needing higher doses. It is important to note that tolerance of caffeine will rapidly increase over extended periods of use, so it is always smart to cycle your usage to enhance its full benefit.
We hope this article has been useful in helping you get your supplements organised but not breaking the bank. Remember you can email us with any questions about any products at any time on email@example.com.
Author Glen George Supplement Consultant at both of our Melbourne stores, Blackburn and Ferntree Gully.