Supplements for Muscle Recovery

Finding it hard to spring out of bed in the morning to make it to class? If you’re muscles aren’t repairing, you may find yourself hitting a wall and unable to perform at your best. Being sore day after day might make you feel like you’re making progress, but your body needs extra nutrients to repair itself after tough workouts. One of the most important but often neglected part of a work out is recovery.

Here are five of the most common supplements your body is asking for:

Protein

Protein is the building block of the body. In a healthy, varied diet, it contributes to the maintenance of bones, helps build and repairs tissues, and spurs on the growth and maintenance of muscle mass. So it’s a good idea to take some protein after exercise to help muscles repair and recover.

Adding some protein powder to your smoothie makes a great on-the-go snack if you’re smashing out fitness sessions. Protein is also important for those looking to build muscle mass, as it helps you feel fuller for longer and burn calories. When consumed alongside a healthy diet and exercise, it will also help you maintain weight and retain lean muscle mass.

Branch chain amino acids

You’ve probably heard of BCAAs, or branch chain amino acids. In a nutshell, if you’re doing any form of strength training, these are worth considering.

BCAAs—leucine, isoleucine and valine—are used to enhance exercise performance, prevent fatigue, improve concentration, and reduce protein and muscle breakdown during intense exercise. BCAAs are depleted through exercise and, as levels drop, athletes experience this as fatigue. Chronic depletion of these amino acids can result in overtraining syndrome and a severely impaired immune system.

BCAAs maximize muscle recovery (win!), prevent muscle soreness, and help to build lean muscle. Nice!

Magnesium

Magnesium has huge benefits for the physically active. Magnesium is the key nutrient required for muscle relaxation, and a deficiency could lead to muscle cramps, soreness and spasms. So supplementation can help prevent premature fatigue and muscular concerns.

Coenzyme Q10 (ubiquinol)

If you’re finding it hard to bounce back from exercise, ubiquinol could be your new buzzword. A naturally occurring antioxidant in the body responsible for powering our cells to create energy, ubiquinol naturally depletes as we age, and this process speeds up if we’re physically active or stressed. So get some ubiquinol to help support your exercise regime.

Zinc

Zinc is involved in the function of more than 300 enzyme systems and assists in the activity of many hormones. Consequently, adequate zinc intake is essential for normal cell function and metabolism, and a deficiency can result in the impairment of many key physiological processes.

One of the most important roles of zinc is to maintain a healthy immune system. So if you’re finding your immune system constantly run down, and are prone to colds and flus, this could be a good one to add to your arsenal.

Stephanie Berglin DBM, DipNut, BA Comms is a naturopath, nutritionist and iridologist with 12 years of clinical experience. Completing her studies at Sydney's renowned Natural Care College, Stephanie went on to found her own successful practice, before taking on her current role as Technical Editor at BioCeuticals and IsoWhey.

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