The Top 5 Highest Return Supplements

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The Top 5 Highest Return Supplements

Supplements are one of the most common topics I get asked by people when it comes to their fitness progress.

However, before you go around splashing your cash on the next ‘best’ fat burner.

Forking out for some mass gainer.

Or spending your wages on overpriced skinny tea.

Realise this:

Supplements will aid an already well structured and executed training and nutrition plan.

If that is not there, supplements won’t be effective.

Taking supplements without being on top of your training, nutrition and recovery is like adding a spoiler to your car to make it faster but not putting the correct petrol in it.

You ain’t going anywhere quickly.

That being said, if you are on top of your training, nutrition, sleep and hydration, supplements can give you that extra boost when it comes to your strength, performance and overall adherence to your fitness plan.

Below are the top 5 supplements that will give you the highest return, why they are beneficial and when and how much of them you should be taking.

1. Whey Protein

Many people class whey as a supplement (I don’t as it is actually a food substitute) but for the sake of this article, I want to add it in as it can be useful for your results.

How much you should you be taking?

Use whey protein as a strategy to hit your protein target for the day.

An average chicken breast has around 40g of protein.

Two scoops of whey isolate protein has around 40g of protein.

If you can’t get access to 40g protein through a chicken breast, a protein shake could be a good substitute.

Your protein target will vary depending on your bodyweight. A good rule of thumb is to aim for 1g of protein per LB of bodyweight. If you weigh 160 LBs, aim for 160g protein per day.

When should you be taking it?

The idea that protein should be taken within an hour of training is a complete myth. There is no such thing as an anabolic window.

That being said, it’s a smart idea to spread your protein out evenly across the day to help aid Muscle Protein Synthesis

Aim for around 25-30g protein per meal and use protein shakes as a tool to help aid this.

2. Omega-3 Fish Oils

Omega-3 fish oils are an important component to aid our brain’s cognitive function as well as many other health benefits.

Studies demonstrate that high doses of omega-3, can reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety as well as relieve several health conditions such as heart disease and cancer.

Omega-3 fish oils contain both docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA).

How much you should you be taking?

To date, there is no official recommended daily allowance for omega-3s. However, most health organisations agree that 250–500 mg of combined EPA and DHA is enough for adults to maintain overall health.

If you are taking this in supplement form, this is usually 2-3 tablets per day is enough.

When should you be taking it?

Omega-3 fish oils are not time dependant.

I’d recommend taking them in the morning with your breakfast or whenever you are having food.

3. Caffeine/Pre-Workout

Caffeine is the world’s most popular stimulant and is used to help increase concentration, improve energy levels and enhance our training performance when in the gym.

A study by Lane et al (2013) found that caffeine, even when taken in low does can improve power, the study looked at cycling power output and found that a dosage of 3mg/kg increase power by up to 3.5%.

How much should you be taking?

A good rule of thumb is to aim for about 4-6mg of caffeine per kg of bodyweight.

So 4mg/kg for a 70kg person would be 280mg of caffeine which is about 1.5 black coffees (out of a regular sized mug).

When should you be taking it?

Caffeine is time dependent.

Many people knock back a coffee 5 minutes before training but studies have shown this to not be very optimal.

Other studies show that you should aim to consume your caffeine around 45 mins-60 mins before you are about to train.

4. Creatine Monohydrate

Out of all the supplements, creatine monohydrate is the most effective supplement I’ve found to help myself and clients get results.

Creatine is without a doubt the most tried and tested supplement out there. It helps with increasing power and strength and can be bought very cheaply. 

How much should you be taking?

Creatine supplementation works by saturating your muscles with as much creatine phosphate as they can handle and a good rule of thumb is to aim for around 5 grams per day. 

There is no need to load or cycle it.

When should you be taking it?

There is some evidence to suggest that post-workout consumption of creatine may be slightly more beneficial than pre-workout consumption, however the difference is very small.

I always advise to take your creatine at a time you’re likely to remember to take it. A good idea is to add it to your protein shake each day and this can signal you to remember to take it.

5. Multivitamins

Multivitamins are the most commonly used supplements in the world and contain many different vitamins and minerals. They’re available in various forms.

Several observational studies indicate that people who take multivitamins have a lower risk of heart disease. However, research in this area is mixed with some studies showing little to no connection.

What we do know is that multivitamins can improve memory and mood. What’s more, antioxidant vitamins and minerals may help slow the progression of diseases that cause blindness.

How much you should you be taking?

Studies show that unless your intake on overall vitamins is inadequate as a result of a poor diet then supplements will probably do you no good.

That being said, if you feel your diet is deficient in these multivitamins, aim to take one tablet per day.

When should you be taking it?

Multivitamins are not time dependant. In the morning with your breakfast can be a good time to take them, if it is easy to remember.

If you are interested in purchasing any supplements, I am affiliated with MyProtein and if you use my code ‘RA35’, you will get 35% off of their products.

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