When you enter any shop that offers various supplements, you may see the whole range of various products that are supposed to help in, among others, building muscle mass. They usually work, but are not equally effective for everyone. Each organism is different and reactions to supplements will also vary. However, despite these differences, there are many supplements characterized by high effectiveness and maximal results for everybody
Building muscle mass – creatine
Creatine is an entirely natural substance, which can be found in our muscle cells – primarily around the tissue of skeletal muscles, where it constitutes around 95% of its whole content in the organism. The remaining 5% is evenly distributed in the whole body.
Using creatine stimulates the growth of muscle mass, increases the volume of muscle cells, influences faster regeneration after training, increases glycogen synthesis and muscle work intensity.
During performing intensive trainings, the need for energy coming from ATP in working muscles considerably increases. During the first 10 seconds of performing an exercise with near-to-maximum weight, muscles utilize the stores of ATP and phosphocreatine. Taking creatine considerably increases the level of ATP, thanks to which we are able to perform more repetitions, i.e. to train longer.
It is recommended to use from 5 to 10 g of creatine in two portions – the first one before training and the second one immediately after training
Muscle mass supplements – beta-alanine
Beta-alanine is a natural amino acid, which accesses the organism along with high-protein food. The increase of training efficiency takes place thanks to the ability to increase the level of carnosine. Taking beta-alanine in the form of a supplement additionally allows to increase the level of carnosine by 60% as soon as after 4 weeks of use. It is very important during intensive trainings, when the organism produces large amounts of hydrogen, which causes the drop of pH, which means that the concentration of lactic acid in the body increases. Such acidity may cause the feeling of strong fatigue, decrease muscle efficiency and may even stop the transmission of nerve impulses.
Using beta-alanine increases endurance and strength, decreases the feeling of fatigue and leads to achieving the effect of muscle pump. Additionally, beta-alanine appears in the role of creatine effect “booster”, ensuring further increase of endurance and strength and it also intensifies the growth of muscle mass and fatty tissue burning.
It is recommended to take 2-3 g before training and the same dose after training.
Muscle mass growth – whey protein
It has been widely known for a long time that in order to increase muscle mass, one should use whey protein. It provides the organism with a lot of proteins, calcium, magnesium and other minerals.
The advantages of whey proteins are:
– good assimilability
- increased muscle regeneration
- decreased appetite
- the content of amino acids
- improved metabolism
It is recommended to take 30-40g, preferably before and after training, but also when you have no other meal at hand and you are not able to provide your organism with a sufficient amount of proteins. However, it should be borne in mind that protein supplements will never replace a complete meal.
Building muscle mass – BCAA
Yet another meaningful supplement, which is often used by bodybuilders is BCAA (branched chain amino acids). Out of 20 essential amino acids, 3 are classified as branched chain amino acids – leucine, isoleucine and valine. They are major elements of protein and they constitute ca. 30% of skeletal muscles of the body. The organism utilizes them for muscle regeneration. Similarly to whey protein, they direct nutritious substances to the muscles, which leads to better regeneration. BCAA are used up during training, therefore their supplementation may help to level up their levels. Additionally, BCAA decrease muscle pain and fatigue.
It is recommended to use this supplement at the doses from 7 to 20 g, therefore it is assumed that 10g of BCAA per day is an optimal amount to work in the organism.
Muscle mass – testosterone boosters
Testosterone boosters are supplements used in order to stimulate the growth of muscle mass, increase strength and libido and to improve the level of sex hormones.
The effect of boosters consists in the fact that they are able to increase the production of testosterone in the organism. They are usually composed of natural plant ingredients and vitamins and sometimes they may contain chemical substances that are also able to increase the level of testosterone.
Testosterone boosters are most often used by bodybuilders, who want to increase lean body mass. Minimal age for applying these supplements ranges from 20 to 24 years. It is related to the instability of the hormonal system and the level of hormones in the young organism. Using testosterone boosters below this age may lead to hormonal disorders. Additionally, the level of testosterone in young men is sufficiently high without external stimulation.
Testosterone boosters cause the most visible effect in men at the age of 30-40 or even older. It is caused by physiologically low level of testosterone at this age, hence applying boosters is conducive to the development of muscle mass, but it also increases libido and potency.