Vitamins And Minerals

A good encapsulated multi vitamin/mineral should be taken each day. It should supply at least 200% of the RDA for all the vitamins and minerals. The RDA is set for the 121 pound reference inactive female and the 154 pound reference inactive male. If you weigh more, you need more vitamins and minerals. If you are training, you need more, and surely if you are dieting and not eating a wide variety of food, you need more.

Bodybuilders should be getting plenty of antioxidants; 1 to 3 grams a day of vitamin C, 400 iu of vitamin E, and up to 20,000 iu of beta carotene. The antioxidants glutathione, selenium, and N-acytl cysteine, are also helpful in fighting free radical damage. An over production of free radicals from training can damage muscle cells, hamper glucose tolerance, promote muscle inflammation, and increase Cortisol levels. Cortisol is a hormone that acts the opposite of testosterone. It can destroy muscle mass. Taking a good supplement that includes the above antioxidants can reduce the net damaging effects of radicals, and boost the immune system.

* Pro-Hormones'

There are 3 supplements that are available at health food stores that are considered hormone pre-cursors. All 3 can increase testosterone levels which, in turn, may increase muscle strength and muscle size. The following are not recommended for women.

DHEA This testosterone precursor is produced by the adrenal cortex which sits atop your kidneys. Although it can be converted into testosterone and add to the total amount of testosterone in the body, no one really knows if or how well it works in building muscle. The testosterone boost produced is probably too small to see any real results. Most bodybuilders report feeling more energetic while using 50 to 100 mgs a day split into 2 doses. 25 to 50 mgs upon rising in morning and another 25 to 50 mgs 2 hours before training.

ANDROSTENEDIONE are closer precursors to testosterone than DHEA and, therefore, can increase testosterone levels higher than DHEA. In fact, a single 100 mg dose taken 1 to 2 hours before training has been shown to boost testosterone levels by up to 300% for a short time (about 2 hours). My opinion is that over a 4 to 5 week period use, men can build more muscle and strength than without having used it. However, there is a caveat. The increased testosterone levels produced by this product may subsequently cause the testes, which make the vast majority of testosterone, to decrease their production of testosterone. The net effect: the androstenedione continues to increase testosterone levels, but the testes compensate and produce less! What happens if you use androstenedione over a long period (more than 8 weeks) and stop? My best guess is your testes will now compensate and produce less testosterone, so it becomes hard to hold and maintain any gains you made using andreostenedione.

TRJBULUS may be the next answer to the off set any chance the testes may decrease their production in testosterone. Tribulus is an herb that increases the amount of lutenizing hormone (LH) in the body. LH is the hormone that governs testosterone production by the testes. When LH is high, testosterone production is high and when LH is low, testosterone production falls. Androstenedione may, in a long use period, cause a decrease in LH which, in turn, causes a drop in testosterone production by the testes. If you are going to use androstenedione to raise your testosterone levels, never use it for more than 4 continuous weeks. Then, follow it up with a 3 week dose of tribulus. Use 250 mg a day the first week, 500 mg the second week and go back to 250 mg the final week. Next, take a full 4 to 6 week break. Use no testosterone precursors before starting their use again,

OVERVIEW: VITAMINS AND MINERALS

Thus far, we have covered the macronutrients carbohydrates, protein and dietary fat. Macro, meaning large, indicates these nutrients are needed in large amounts. And since the body can not make or manufacture carbs, protein and fat from thin air, it's the bodybuilders responsibility to not only consume them each day but to strive to take in the right amounts and, for best performance, to structure a diet that allows for maximal absorption via smaller feeding with more carbs coming in the post training, pre- training and first meal of the day.

Carbs, protein and fat, vitamins and minerals are also found in common, every day foods. However, the vitamins and minerals are classified as micronutrients. Although absolutely necessary for good health, they are not required in large amounts. Carbs, protein and fat are measured in grams where vitamins and minerals are measured, for the most part in milligrams. One milligram is only 1/1000 of a gram. While carbs, protein and fat are a source of caloriesf vitamins and minerals are not.

Vitamins serve as sparkplugs that help the body digest, metabolize and absorb the carbohydrates, protein and fat we eat. They work "hand in hand" to derive fuel from macronutrients. Therefore, micronutrients could be called "energy producing" nutrients.

The common way to classify vitamins is to group them by their solubility. Some vitamins dissolve or "mix" with water while others dissolve with fat. Fat soluble vitamins include A, D, E, K and require a special carrier in the blood made from protein in order to move along the watery-like blood stream. The good news is fat soluble vitamins are storable. They can hang around the body for a long time within fat cells or in the liver waiting to be used when the body needs them. The down side is the fat soluble vitamins can also build up in the same fat deposits and eventually be deemed dangerous. So, the uninformed pill popping athlete looking for energy, vitality and endurance in a bottle of vitamins could be making a big mistake in randomly swallowing pill after pill, uneducated to the fact that excessive fat soluble vitamins could be harmful to the body!

The water soluble vitamins include all those in the B family and vitamin C. They are readily transported in the blood. Some, like B-12, can be stored in tissues, but unlike fat soluble vitamins the water soluble can be easily removed from the body and readily excreted via the urine.

The amount of vitamins we need has been determined by the Food and Nutrition board of the National Academy of Science. Their findings are referred to as the RDA of

Recommended Dietary Allowances. Every five years the board sets new or updated recommendations concerning the amount of vitamins and minerals necessary to meet the "known nutritional needs of all healthy persons." These recommendations are set to cover the full population and are set by determining the lowest level at which a deficiency occurs and the highest level where harm can occur and a "happy medium" is set from there. The RDA for each micronutrient is high enough above the lower level to prevent deficiency even if the vitamin is not consummed (via foods) every day yet far enough from the highest level to prevent harm.

Before opting for a vitamin and mineral supplement, its imperative that you rely on food sources to obtain as much of the nutrition you need each day. Research scientists are discovering another family of nutrients called phytochemicals, compounds common to fruits and vegetables that exert healthy and immune boosting effects. The mind set of the pill popping athlete is that he can shun wholesome foods and obtain all the micronutrients he needs through supplemental pills. While, as we will see, supplements hold some promise, they are not substitutes for a balanced healthy diet. Eating a variety of grains, fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins such as non fat milk and cheese, fish, skinless chicken breast and even small amounts of lean cuts of red meat will provide the body with a wide spectrum of vitamins and minerals.

Keep Your Weight In Check During The Holidays

Keep Your Weight In Check During The Holidays

A time for giving and receiving, getting closer with the ones we love and marking the end of another year and all the eating also. We eat because the food is yummy and plentiful but we don't usually count calories at this time of year. This book will help you do just this.

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