Many people today are getting into healthy living and aiming to have a fit body. Exercising regularly and eating nutritious foods are some of the best ways to achieve fitness. One of the important benefits of exercising is gaining muscle and strength, as these will enable you to perform your best during exercise and as well as in your daily life. And this can be improved by taking food supplements.
When you search for food supplements, the results vary depending on marketing, opinions, fads, and as well as the hottest trends. But keep in mind that when choosing food supplements for fitness, it’s better to avoid those that promise to cut fat, build muscle, and enhance performance. Why? It’s because people can achieve most of the essential nutrients from healthy food intake to create the body you want. But there are a few food supplements that you can take that can help enhance your fitness.
Keep in mind that food supplements are unregulated. With this, before spending a lot on them, it is very important to research first about the products, ask your doctor about it, and track your own progress. Before buying a bunch of supplements, it’s essential to make an informed decision. To help you, we are giving you the top 5 food supplements for fitness that are backed by scientific evidence.
1. Fish Oil
Fatty fish has docosahexaenoic acid or DHA and eicosapentaenoic acid or EPA, which are both types of Omega-3 fatty acids. Based on studies similar to The Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, fish oil supplementation aids in neuromuscular improvement for endurance athletes. Also, Omega-3 fats have already been linked to a decreased risk of heart disease.
In addition, another study suggests that supplementation with DHA produced perceptual-motor benefits in female elite athletes and that it could be a useful supplement in sports where decision making and reaction time efficiency are essential.
Here are some of the best fish oil supplements you can try:
- NOW Foods Omega-3 Fish Soft Gels
- Dr. Tobias Omega-3 Fish Oil Soft Gels
- Nature’s Bounty Fish Oil Dietary Supplement
- Nature Made Fish Oil Supplement
- MAV NUTRITION Omega-3 Fish Oil Supplement
2. Branch Chain Amino Acids or BCAAs
BCAAs are important supplements to improve recovery if you are into fitness sports and workouts. It can help in reducing fatigue and protein degradation. It contains valine, isoleucine, and leucine, which all have an important role in protein synthesis and glucose uptake in the body cells. These amino acids have important functions in post-exercise and as well as for overall muscle building and recovery. This can be obtained by eating lean protein. Based on the Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, BCAA supplementation may decrease the muscle damage associated with endurance exercise.
Here are some of the best BCAA food supplements you can try:
- Clean Machine Natural Food Sourced BCAAs & Coconut Water Electrolytes Supplement
- Mutant BCAA Supplement Powder
- Pristine Foods BCAA Amino Shock Powder
- Optimum Nutrition Instantized BCAA Capsules
- NOW Sports Nutrition BCAA Blast Powder
3. Vitamin D
Vitamin D is also a great food supplement for fitness because vitamin D deficiency has become an issue that negatively affects people over a wide age spectrum worldwide. This vitamin can be obtained by eating dairy products. Aside from that, it is also absorbed through natural sunlight. To maintain optimal health and fitness, it is very important to include a source of vitamin D in your diet.
Based on Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, vitamin D may help in improving athletic performance in vitamin D-deficient athletes. In addition, it may also protect them from several acute and chronic medical conditions.
Here are some of the best vitamin D supplements you can try:
- NOW Foods Vitamin D3 Supplement
- Nature Wise Vitamin D3 Food Supplement
- Nature’s Bounty Vitamin D3 for Healthy Bones
- 365 by Whole Foods Market Vitamin D Supplements
- MegaFood Certified Organic Vitamin D Supplement Gummies
Most of the fat-burning, weight loss, and performance enhancer supplements out there have caffeine as their main ingredient. This is because a cup of coffee can boost the metabolism and give antioxidants at the same time. However, when it comes to caffeine, more is never better, and you need to be cautious before using it as a food supplement.
Based on a 2014 Harvard Health Publication, caffeine, aside from being a brain stimulant, can also block receptions, giving you a surge of energy, which can potentially improve mental performance and slowing age-related mental decline.
Here are some of the best caffeine food supplements we found:
- Nutricost Natural Caffeine Veggie Capsules
- Natrol Caffeine Supplement
- Science in Sport Energy Caffeine Gels
- Prolab Caffeine Dietary Supplement for Energy, Focus, and Endurance
Fitness always involves muscle building and strength, and creatine is one of the most research and widely used supplements for this. It is used to supply energy to cells within the body and maintain the balance of cellular functions. This is a naturally occurring substance in the body but can also be found in foods such as meat, eggs, and dairy.
It is still important to do your research on this before adding it to your diet. But based on some studies, creatine supplementation seems to be a generally effective nutritional ergogenic aid for different exercise tasks in a number of athletic and clinical populations.
Here are some of the best creatine food supplements we found:
- Optimum Nutrition Micronized Creatine Monohydrate Powder
- MET-Rx Creatine 4200 Supplement
- CYTOSPORT Creatine Monohydrate Supplement Powder
- Pure Encapsulations Creatine Powder Workout Supplement
- NAKED Nutrition Pure Creatine Food Supplement
These are the top 5 food supplements for fitness. Remember that food supplements are only used to enhance nutrition and exercise performance. It is still essential to do your workouts regularly and eat healthy and fresh foods to achieve a fit body. Also, before taking any food supplements, ensure that you consult with a doctor first, especially if you have health conditions or taking any medications.