Build Muscle & Burn Fat | A Beginner’s Guide To Supplements


By Edd Oldfield |

Bodybuilder and Personal Trainer

In the present day, the fitness industry is saturated with 1000’s of supplements ranging from simple protein powders to names that would sound more at home in a science lesson. You can see why then it is so hard for a beginner/those on a limited budget.

So what actually works? What supplements will actually benefit a beginner?

Before I go into what I believe to be the essential supplements that are proven to work, I have to make an important point. Supplements are just that, they supplement your diet, training and rest. Supplementing can enhance your hard work to help you reach your ultimate goal – the desired physique!

#1 Whey Protein

The number one choice when it comes to protein supplementation for pretty much everyone is Whey Protein. Whey Protein is a lot more common than you think, in fact, it is one of the two proteins found in milk –  the other being casein.

Whey is made by extraction from milk, then the remaining excess carbohydrates and fats are removed to leave the purest protein you can wish it find. Whey protein is as close as any supplement will ever get to being “required” in a training and diet program. With good reason too – as Whey is an excellent source of the most important muscle-building amino acids (branched chained amino acids) leucine, isoleucine and valine. These are key signals in triggering muscle protein synthesis¹ AKA new muscle growth.

Whey Protein has also been shown to increase fat burning, in a study conducted by Jeff S. Volek, Ph.D., R.D they found by just adding whey protein into the diet without any other dietary modification, subjects lost fat and built new muscle tissue².

Vegans can easily opt for the likes of:

Hemp protein, Brown rice protein, Pea protein, or try a combo with Vegan blend protein – which also contains essential amino acids and over 20g protein per serving!

Take a look at our range of protein powders and understand how we can offer quality products at great prices!

When to take and dosage?

? The most common way to consume whey is post-workout (up to 30 minutes after your workout) and this is a great way to get whey into your diet – simply mix 1 scoop (usually 20-30g) with water or milk, depending on your preference.

? However, whey protein can be used at any time you’re looking for a good source of protein be it breakfast, midday or before bed!

#2 Creatine Monohydrate

The most tested and researched supplement on the market is Creatine Monohydrate. Creatine Monohydrate is an organic acid found naturally in food such as fish and beef.

Creatine helps those looking to get bigger, stronger and perform better. It works by acting as an energy source for anaerobic work such as weightlifting, sprinting and anything requiring rapid short bursts of movement. It has also been shown to increase muscle protein synthesis in not one but two ways:

1) Creatine help individuals to lift more for longer due to its rapid energy replenishment properties.

2) Secondly, is that the more creatine you have stored in the muscle, the more water is drawn into the muscle itself – thus making them fuller and stronger.

With more creatine and water in muscle, the volume will increase and the muscles become ‘volumised’ or ‘super-hydrated’. A volumised muscle will help trigger protein synthesis, minimise protein breakdown and increase glycogen synthesis as shown by Haussinger 1996; 1996³.

When to take and dosage?

Creatine Monohydrate can be taken in one of two ways. Firstly you can “load” it in order to saturate your muscles quicker by taking 15-20g per day for 5 days followed by 5g per day as a maintenance phase.

#3 Omega 3

Probably the most underrated supplement on the market is Omega 3 derived from fish oil. As an Essential Fatty Acid (EFA) it is just that – essential. This is due to the fact that we cannot synthesise it in our bodies, therefore we need to eat or supplement Omega 3 in order to get enough of it in our diet.

Omega 3 can be found in salmon, trout, free range eggs and grass fed beef. Unfortunately, the amounts in these foods tend to be on the lower side, therefore, supplementing Omega 3 is a great option.

Omega 3’s have also been shown to help burn more fat for those in a caloric deficit. This is due to the fact it helps with Beta-oxidation (the breakdown of fatty acids to be used as energy). Therefore, by supplementing more Omega 3, you have a better chance of increasing your body’s ability to use its own fat stores as energy and thus burning body fat in the process.

When to take and dosage?

I recommend taking in 5g of Omega 3 daily to get the maximum benefit.

protein shakes


When used properly, BCAA’s are an incredibly powerful supplement to assist your training – whether you’re trying to build muscle, lose weight or both!

In order to build muscle, it is important for your body’s rate of protein synthesis to be higher than the rate of protein breakdown. If it is the other way around, you’ll begin to lose muscle mass and when they are equal, your muscle mass will remain the same. So, how do BCAA’s help this?

? BCAA’s increase the rate of protein synthesis

BCAA’s stimulate protein synthesis as they have previously been broken down into the amino acids required by your body to carry out the reaction >>, therefore, the rate of protein synthesis increases. This is exactly how BCAA’s can help maximise muscle recovery.

Increased muscle repair >> more muscle growth >> better fat burn!

BCAA’s reduce the amount of protein breakdown

BCAA’s reduce the number of bases that are released which signal to break-down protein. Understanding this makes it is easier to understand how BCAA’s increase protein synthesis – this results in more muscle being built. More muscle.

Furthermore, they have been shown to reduce muscle soreness, meaning you can push even harder the days following intense exercise.

When to take and dosage?

BCAA powder form can be taken in 5g dosages and can be consumed 2-4 times daily, whenever needed! Consume pre-workout, during training, post-workout or throughout the day to help aid aching muscles (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness – DOMS).

Capsules: 2 x Myprotein BCAA 1500 is recommended 2-3 times daily. Nevertheless, dosages are usually very similar – simply follow guidelines.

 #5 Multi-vitamin

Some people could say that a multivitamin is a non-essential supplement and each vitamin can be absorbed through a well-balanced diet.

However, for most, it’s pretty difficult to squeeze in 7 essential vitamins, in addition to B vitamins, vitamin C, E, A and D3 – especially those who live a hectic lifestyle.

Including daily vitamins in the diet is more important for those who push their bodies through physical exercise – as a lack of these could interfere with muscle growth and strength gains!

When to take and dosage?

DOSAGE: Take a multivitamin once, maybe twice daily with meals.

Take Home Message

If you are not eating the right diet, not training properly and/or not getting enough rest you won’t reap the full benefits of these supplements.

Just remember these are the icing on the cake and you first need the cake (proper diet, training and rest) before you can ice it!

Our articles should be used for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned, consult a health professional before taking dietary supplements or introducing any major changes to your diet.



Writer and expert

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