If you’re into self-improvement and optimizing your health, you’re probably willing to spend a little money on supplements: Anything that can give you that edge, right?
On the other hand, it’s fairly common knowledge that the supplement industry is somewhat fraudulent. Do the products you’re buying really deliver on their grandiose promises, or have you just been throwing money down the drain for placebo effects, or no effect al all?
Supplement companies and products aren’t created equal, so here are some common RED FLAGS to take note of when deciding what protein powder or pre-workout you should buy:
It's not uncommon to come across two seemingly-identical products on the shelf, with the exact same labelling. But for some reason, one is half the price of the other. Usually, the consumer picks up the less expensive one, only to discover the fine print when he gets home. Turns out the product he purchased provides 10 days worth of product, meanwhile the other bottle that cost twice as much contained 30 days worth of product.
Stick to companies who label their products clearly.
Science and data impresses most of us. Supplement companies know this, so they’ll do anything to make it look like their products are backed by science. The problem is, sometimes the science they use is unproven. Or they’ll say vague things like "based on scientific research.” What research? What study?
Don’t be lazy: Spend some time and do some research to look into the validity of their claims. Specifically, look for peer-reviewed research with legitimate data.
Familiarize yourself with the Ingredients
It’s not uncommon for a company to release a product claiming to be something like an “endurance substance that improves performance.” It might say it’s full of calcium carbonate, so the consumer assumes calcium carbonate must be good for improving endurance. (Calcium carbonate is actually just Tums and likely won’t improve your endurance!)
Familiarize yourself with the ingredients of any product you buy and look into what these ingredients really are. (Also, avoid products with added sugar!)
Stay away from products that claim to produce health miracles. If a product says it can cure tumors, be suspicious! Although in the USA, the FDA requires companies to refrain from making claims that they cure diseases, sometimes these regulations are ignored. Breaking Muscle explained more about this in an article here:http://breakingmuscle.com/nutrition/4-things-you-need-to-know-before-buying-supplements.
The supplement industry is here to stay, in all its often flawed glory. It’s up to you to tread carefully and discover the good products out there. Read the labels, research the product, ingredients and company, avoid the common pitfalls and red flags, and trial and error your way to discover what works for you.
Here at Forge Valley Fitness we have taken the guess work out of the supplement game. All our supplements have been approved by many top coaches and athletes around the world. Plus we won't subscribe you something you don't need, or we don't believe in. Talk to your coach about what might be right for you.