For many people, building muscle mass is not an easy thing. The growth is usually more pronounced in the first few months after beginning an exercise program, only for the gains to peter out once the body gets used to the exercise regimen.
While changing your exercise program and diet can help, you may have considered using some muscle-building supplements to help you achieve your goals faster.
However, with so many different supplements available, it can be difficult to know which ones are the best for you. Let’s explore how you can compare different muscle-building supplements, so you make a good choice.
Criteria for Comparing Muscle-Building Supplements
When comparing supplements, there are several factors you need to consider to help you narrow down your list of the best supplements to build muscles. These include:
Ingredients and composition
It is always important to research the types of ingredients and their concentration levels in each supplement. This is because the quality and type of ingredients in a supplement can greatly impact its effectiveness.
Some supplements contain ingredients sourced from animal products, such as whey protein. Meanwhile, others have a high amount of plant extracts, such as ginseng and fenugreek. Others still have artificial compounds.
It is also important to note that some supplements contain one ingredient and are thus only able to provide limited benefits compared to those with multiple ingredients. For instance, a supplement that has amino acids, creatine, and testosterone boosters will not only boost muscle growth, but also enhance power and endurance while working out.
On the other hand, a muscle-building supplement that only has whey protein may only boost rapid muscle growth, but lack the ability to boost your weight lightening power.
Safety and potential side effects
Some supplements contain ingredients that can cause adverse reactions, or even interact with your medications, hence reducing their effectiveness. It is therefore important to research the safety profile of each supplement you want to purchase, so you can be aware of any potential side effects.
As a rule of thumb, avoid supplements that contain anabolic steroids like:
- Trenbolone acetate
These compounds contain high levels of testosterone and are not only addictive, but can lead to a number of health complications, such as:
- Liver damage
- Reproductive disorders
- Heart disease
Generally, the safest supplements are those that contain nutrients that are commonly found in food, such as zinc, protein, magnesium and vitamins. They should also be certified by the FDA in accordance with the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994.
Most importantly, check whether the products have undergone independent testing by a third party, and stop using any product once you notice a negative body reaction to it.
Effectiveness and customer reviews
Different supplements have different degrees of effectiveness. It is also important to note that some supplements are designed for amateur trainers, while others are ideal for more experienced weightlifters. You should therefore use a supplement based on the amount of effort you put into your exercise.
For instance, if you are just starting to work out, go for a product that promotes moderate muscle growth and only use a more effective supplement once you build on your momentum and are able to lift heavy weights.
One of the best ways to gauge a supplement’s effectiveness is by reading online reviews from previous and current users. Look for supplements that have a high rating and positive feedback from users who have achieved their desired results.
Price and value for money
Cost is always a factor when choosing a supplement. While the most expensive option may not always be the best, it is also important to avoid budget supplements that may not contain high-quality ingredients.
Once you have a budget and you’ve established the type of supplement you want to acquire, you can compare the market prices and choose a reasonably priced supplement.
Which is the Best Muscle Building Supplement?
The truth is, there is no one supplement that works best for every fitness enthusiast. Whether you want to build muscle mass, increase strength, or improve recovery, you should first establish your goals and choose a supplement that will help you achieve them.
Likewise, always consult your fitness trainer or doctor for proper guidance, even if the supplements contain natural and seemingly safe ingredients. According to the European Annals of Allergy And Clinical Immunology, for instance, some whey and protein supplements were found to trigger cow’s milk allergy.