The Essentials in Supplements

 | Articles, Fitness, Health, Nutrition  | 14 Comments

As most of you know, I usually like to trumpet the immense value of eating mostly unprocessed foods. I like to avoid sugar and keep it fairly low-carb as well. But sometimes it can be difficult to get every single bit of the nutrients we need to keep our bodies humming along perfectly from our diets alone.

In the fitness world supplements are a pretty big deal. I’m sure lots of you know a gym rat or two who have whole cabinets devoted to shelves of tubs and bottles. You may hear people talking about everything from protein powder to pre-workout stimulants to BCAA’s to creatine. And depending on who you are and how you train, those things and other supplements may or may not be helpful and/or healthful to you.

People often ask me about supplements; what do I take? What do I recommend? I personally use protein powder and take an essential fatty acids supplement. Protein powder is no mystery. It can be hard to get all the protein you need from food alone when you’re an athlete that trains daily. Protein powder is convenient and tasty and helps me build and retain muscle, along with helping me feel full and satisfied. I also have a special Pre-Workout Protein Blend with Botanical Fat Burner in my own supplement line, that I ‘ve been using for months already.

Essential fatty acids are something else all together and it’s mostly what I want to talk about today. Essential fatty acids (EFAs) are acids that the body must have to function properly. It’s stuff you can’t live without! They affect all bodily systems and tissues. Deficiencies in EFAs can cause dry skin, eczema, anemia, hair loss, impaired wound healing, loose stools, and early death, among other symptoms.

EFAs are called essential because the body can’t function without them and the body can’t make them either. All EFA’s must be gotten from your diet alone. The two main EFAs are linoleic acid (omega-6) and alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3).

Ah, now there’s a familiar name. Many people feel like they’re on good terms with omega-3 fatty acids. That’s why we’re supposed to eat a bunch of salmon (salmon is the food with the highest amount of omega-3 EFAs) or take fish oil supplements. EFAs act as local hormones and have vital roles in inflammation, blood clotting, blood pressure, and contractions of the uterus. We’ve all heard that omega-3s are the good kind of fat.

So we should all be taking omega-3 supplements, right? But it turns out that just taking omega-3 supplements or eating a lot of fish doesn’t quite fill the bill. Unless you have omega-3 AND omega-6 EFAs, you might have a EFAs deficiency.

Unfortunately, the food highest in omega-6 EFAs is vegetable oil. And I don’t know about you but I’m not really up for drinking a shot or two of veg oil every day along with my fish dinner. Now, there are lots of other foods sources for omega-3 and omega-6 EFAs; nuts and seeds, poultry, cereal, grass-fed dairy, etc. But it can be hard to know how much you’re getting and in what ratio. Add in dietary restrictions or allergies (no dairy, no gluten, no meat) or the elimination of certain food groups because you’re trying to lose weight, and things can get really complicated.

That’s why I take an EFAs supplement. It has the appropriate ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 EFAs and adds no wasteful calories to my diet. I believe in them so strongly that I have had a formula developed for my own supplement line and actually sell them in my online store. Don’t get me wrong, I still love, eat, and recommend salmon and nuts and seeds and leafy greens and all that good stuff. But when I take my EFAs supplement I know I have all my bases completely covered. Tons of people are walking around with an EFAs deficiency and don’t even know it.

If you feel like something is off with your health and your diet is low in some of the food items mentioned above, I would highly recommend trying the EFAs supplement. I would actually recommend trying it anyway because EFAs are so crucial to your health and proper bodily function. It’s what I do and I wouldn’t recommend anything to you guys that I don’t do myself.

I’d love to hear from you all about your experiences with EFAs. Do you take any EFAs supplements? How does it affect your health and well being? DO you think supplements are bogus? As always, I’d love to know your thoughts.

In good health,

Z.

Join ZGYM Today!



Fitness. Simplified.

Get in the best shape of your life.

In just 20 minutes a day.

Period.

Become a ZGYM member to get access to even more, premium, specialized workouts, recipes, workout schedules, and Zuzka's Food Journal by joining ZGYM.

More Info

Comments



14 comments on “The Essentials in Supplements”

  1. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  |  CA, USA

    I totally agree, if I could only take 2 supplements, it would be EFA’s and Vitamin D3.

  2. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  | 

    Zuzka, thanks for the information. I get confused sometimes in all the supplements. Can you tell me your opinion on CLA? I have body fat (not a lot) that I want to drop and trying to take the supplements that are good for me and not that those not needed. I use a protein meal replacement for those occasions that can’t get a meal in. Any suggestions are appreciated.

    • private avatar image
      Private

      Private  |  Los Angeles, CA, USA

      The studies on CLA supplements show overall very modest/low effect on fat loss. Besides that, the Conjugated Linoleic Acid in the form of a supplement is way different from the CLA found in grass-fed meat (beef) and dairy, because the way the CLA supplement is made is through chemically altering unhealthy vegetable oils. There’s been a lot of research that shows how consumption of larger doses of CLA supplements can be harmful to our health. There are plenty of studies that show obtaining CLA from grass fed beef and dairy can be very beneficial for our health and yield desired fat loss. This is why I don’t list CLA supplements in my nutrition guide and why I have not included them in my own supplement line. It’s also why I use grass fed butter in my bulletproof coffee daily – that’s how I obtain natural source of CLA.

      • private avatar image
        Private

        Private  | 

        Zuzka, I watched your video on your energy drink making of the smoothie. I see and understand all ingredients EXCEPT,,, the goat (mixture). Would you share the name of it. And you said it’s really good for you. Would you share that as well. Ordering the energy packets and excited to get started. Thanks In Advance. 😊

      • private avatar image
        Private

        Private  | 

        Now I a really confused….Zuzka, I am Ana vid follower and do your workouts, love what you do, But after reading this post on your site, it reminded me to look back at your comment to me…. Seem that you contridict yourself. ( no disrespect meant what so ever). And maybe I am reading it wrong…. In the comment to me on my request of Cla you commented very low effect,,,, in the new one you state rapid rate effect….. As you can tell I am new to all the supplements and just trying to determine what is best to use. Can you please clearing???
        From your blog::::
        And what about Omega-6? An even more startling 1999 mice study at Louisiana State University showed that “CLA [conjugated linoleic acid, aka Omega-6 EFAs] feeding produces a rapid, marked decrease in fat accumulation, and an increase in protein accumulation, at relatively low doses without any major effects on food intake.” Again, incredible. This study really blew my socks off. The already stored fat actually decreased and the amount of protein accumulation increased with no changes to the rest of their diet! Those are some magic words for those of us who want to achieve a lean, muscular, sculpted body.

  3. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  | 

    Y las Bcaa tamb hay que tomarlas haciendo tus ejercicios,estoy un poco perdida en este tema pero con tu articulo me ha quedado claro que tengo que tomar omega 3,eso sí pero que opinas de las BCAA?

    • private avatar image
      Private

      Private  | 

      Virginia,
      Thanks for your response 🙂 However, I can’t read it as I can only speak and read English. If someone can translate that would be wonderful. Have a great day!!!

  4. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  |  San Diego, CA, USA

    I ordered your essential fatty acid supplement, I’m excited to try it and see if I feel a difference. Thanks Zuzka!

    • private avatar image
      Private

      Private  | 

      Hey Michelle,
      I wondered if you ordered the essential fatty acid supplement? How was the taste? Any difference that you can notice by taking it?

      Thanks,
      Lesia

      • private avatar image
        Private

        Private  |  San Diego, CA, USA

        Hi Lesia,

        I did order it and I just ordered a refill so I don’t run out! There is absolutely no taste and the pills are half the size of what I’m used to seeing in a fish oil supplement and very easy to swallow. I do feel a difference, particularly in my mood. I also feel less achy in my joints which was becoming more of a problem for me, especially once I turned 30.

    • private avatar image
      Private

      Private  | 

      Hi Michelle, Hope you have a wonderful start to a new year! Do you also use Z’s fat burner?? I am thinking of ordering and wondered if you had tried it as well. Happy New Year to you!!!!

      • private avatar image
        Private

        Private  |  San Diego, CA, USA

        Thank you, Happy New Year to you! I have not tried the fat burner, I am too attached to my morning pre-workout coffee LOL. I did receive a couple of sample packets of the fat burner with my EFA order and when I ordered the hoodie and tank top but I keep forgetting to try them!

  5. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  | 

    Hi Zuzka are your supplements Vegan friendly?

  6. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  |  Montecatini Terme, Pistoia, Italia

    Hi Zuzka
    I wanted to know if you send in Italy!

Add a comment

Note: You must be logged in to add a comment. Please log in, or register for a free account.

New to ZuzkaLight.com?

Become a ZGYM Member and get in the best shape of your life!

More Info


Already a member?
Login

Registering for a free account will allow you to: comment on articles, add your own profile picture, get notifications when another member replies to one of your comments, and add workouts to your own personal favorites list.

All fields are required.


Top


css.php