At Allied Strength we recommend that all adults and athletes follow a balanced diet of lean proteins, healthy fats, fruits and lots of vegetables. It will always be best to get your daily energy and nutrient needs covered from unprocessed, whole foods. But we understand that day to day life can be hectic and unpredictable, so here are our supplement recommendations that should do just that, supplement your regular food intake. And it never hurts to have a good backup plan and solutions for getting in adequate nutrition.
1. A Great Multivitamin
Multivitamins are a great way to make sure you are “covering your bases” and consuming nutrients you are not getting through your regular diet.
Benefits: Overall health and immune system, energy levels, reducing the risks for a multitude of illnesses and avoiding malnutrition.
Recommended Multivitamins: Optimum Nutrition Men’s (Opti-Men) or Women’s (Opti-Women), One A Day.
2. A High Quality/Potency Omega-3s
While it is getting easier to consume omega-3 fatty acids from foods, some may still lack adequate intake based on the foods they eat daily. When looking for a great Omega-3 supplement it comes down to the brand, quality control, and potency testing.
Benefits: Cardiovascular support, improved blood lipid ratios, cognitive (brain) health, reducing joint pain (including Arthritis), improving mood, skin health/complexation.
Recommended Omega-3 Products: NOW Ultra Omega-3, Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega-3, Kirkland Signature Fish Oil Concentrate (Costco). For Vegetarians/Vegans: Nordic Naturals Algae Omega
Great Food Sources: Wild salmon, free range eggs, tuna, anchovies, walnuts, algae
We can actually synthesize vitamin-d in our bodies with the help of the sun, but during the colder periods of the year we might not get enough sun exposure (10-15 minutes in shorts/t-shirt or equivalent. Usually it is only needed for supplementation in the winter months or if you live in areas with limited sun light.
Benefits: Improved bone health, improved muscle function, additional health benefits
Recommended Vitamin-D Supplements: Carlson Solar D Gems (this brand is particularly great because each dose includes omega-3s to help with the Vitamin-D uptake as it is a fat-soluble vitamin). Most reputable brands with 1,000-4,000 IUs per serving are perfect.
Great Food Sources: Egg Yolks and products fortified with vitamin-d (dairy products and grains)
4. Greens Supplement
Like a multivitamin, a great greens supplement can fill in some of the vitamin and mineral deficiencies you are not regularly consuming through food. Great to consume first thing in the morning.
Benefits: Improved energy and immune system support.
Recommended Greens Supplement: Greens Plus Organic Super Food Wild Berry, Amazing Grass Green Superfood (Berry).
5. A High Quality and Great Tasting Protein Blend
As with everything mentioned previously, a protein powder is really only needed for those not consuming enough quality protein through their regular diet. Protein powder is also incredibly convenient for those that find themselves limited on time to eat during the day. We also emphasize to find a protein powder that tastes/mixes great in water. You are much less likely to consume it if you don’t like the taste. You can also buy premade shakes in a can or bottle for added convenience.
We recommend that you get a protein powder or shake with a mix of protein sources (usually whey, casein, milk or egg). For vegetarian or vegans there are also some great plant-based protein blends. Also watch out for powders high in sugar and fat. If possible, avoid soy protein sources.
Benefits: Improved muscle recovery and lean muscle growth, reduced hunger, potentially improved metabolism, improved bone health, not to mention it is basically essential for every cell in your body.
Recommended Protein Supplements: Trutein and Trutein Naturals (the best tasting and highest quality protein blend for the money), Metabolic Drive, Quest Protein. Pure Protein Shakes (in can) For Vegans: Sun Warrior, Body Nutrition Gardenia (same brand as Trutein).
Food Sources: Lean meats like chicken, turkey, beef, some fish like salmon and tuna. Dairy products especially low fat Greek yogurt and cottage cheese.