Other Supplements - A Complete Guide


Posted: 22 December 2002

Supplement Function(s) Food Sources Claim(s) of Supplements The Science
Amino Acids Building blocks of protein Non-essential amino acids are manufactured by the body; essential amino acids are derived from animal protein (meat and poultry), beans, nuts and legumes Encourage muscle growth and prevent muscle breakdown May offset protein breakdown in muscles; supplements can increase muscle growth or recovery
Coenzyme Q-10 Helps release energy from food to body's cells Can be made in the body; food sources include peanuts, spinach, beans, bran, beef, sardines and mackerel Increased intake enhances release of energy from cells Inconclusive
Creatine Helps to fire up muscles during high-intensity exercise Protein-like substance found in body; food sources include meat and fish Boosts muscle strength and sprint performance One of the best-selling supplements ever; research suggests creatine supplements are effective, but they may not produce the same results in everyone
Ginkgo biloba Unknown No food sources; extracts of Ginkgo biloba are taken from the leaves of this plant Helps keep you mentally alert; supports blood circulation Inconclusive
Ginseng Unknown No food sources; plant used as a tonic that's made from ginseng extract; sold as tea, capsules and powders Improves stamina and immunity; helps maintain the natural balance of the body Studies show ginseng doesn't increase speed in runners
Glucosamine Sulphate Helps to rebuild connective tissue such as cartilage, tendons and ligaments No food sources; glucosamine is produced in the body from glucose and glutamine Supports the health, flexibility and functions of the joints Inconclusive but promising
Information obtained from: Runner's World archives, Boots, Solgar Vitamins, the British Nutrition Foundation and The Complete Guide to Sports Nutrition by Anita Bean.


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