Vitamins & Minerals… Do You Really Need Them?
Question to Coach Rob
(From the Blueprint Power Hour on SuperHuman Radio)
What do you make of vitamins, minerals etc? I keep reading where my body needs them, but they’re tough to get enough of.
True, or is it just marketing?
I’m from the school of thought that yes, your body needs them. In fact without them, you’d either be dead or performance suffers – a lot. Let’s look at a few examples.
If you’re doing it right, you’re going to sweat – sometimes profusely. Your body loses a lot of minerals this way, chief among them sodium, potassium, zinc and especially magnesium. Throw a few sets of hanging leg raises into the mix or other intense ab moves and you’ll find that out right quick – your abs will cramp up. And when that happens, you’ll get a knee jerk reaction where the only way out of it is to lean backwards. This is only a temporary fix though, as you need to replenish these mineral and fast if you don’t’ want it to continue happening. 2-3 ZMA or Zinc, Magnesium Asparate capsules works and fast. Even better, make it a habit of consuming an electrolyte drink mix during training. Not only will you avoid those situations, your performance should improves – sometimes considerably.
Beyond this, a quality multi-vitamin/multi-mineral is good insurance against deficiencies. You can eat a quote unquote “balanced” diet and still be deficient. Why? In a best case scenario, we’re eating whole foods grown in nutritionally depleted soil. Far worse is processed “foods” stripped of vitamins and minerals. Worst of all, restaurants microwave it dead which virtually eliminates any nutritional value. Then you get into improper selection, poor eating habits, intolerance to certain foods, restrictive diets and increased take out. Or, vitamin-robbers like stress, tobacco smoke, alcohol, industrial pollution, medications, birth control and on and on…
There’s a really sharp formula called Multi-Guard that I really like. Or Pine Pollen Extract, that’s another good one. You’ll need to take certain other products separately though, because while a few hundred mg of vitamin C will prevent scurvy, you only gain Vit C’s anti-oxidant and immune boosting properties when it’s in the gram range. What are you going to do, eat a crate load of organges to get it? I’m afraid I have bad news: Identical looking oranges can have wildly differing Vit C levels depending upon climate, soil the trees grow in etc. That and it’d be enough fructose to sink a ship, never mind your fat loss efforts.
Finally, there’s some interesting research emerging on Vit C offshoots. For example, Vitamin C 2-phosphate: This isn’t the Vitamin C you find in orange juice. Vit C 2 phosphate is a much more stable, long acting derivative of regular Vitamin C. More importantly, it’s the only form that can accumulate in muscle cells following oral supplementation. New evidence shows it may promote both skeletal muscle fiber hypertrophy and differentiation.
More evidence is needed, but plan on hearing a lot more about this stuff if subsequent findings are consistent with that effect.
BPPH Show SHR Dec. 13, 2016