The Lowdown on 3 Common Athletic Supplements

Athletic Supplements

With so many athletic supplements crowding the shelves these days, choosing the right ones for your lifestyle may seem more daunting than winning an Olympic medal. Experts say many supplements don’t live up to their hype — and some may be detrimental to your health. Here is the lowdown on three common Athletic supplements

Athletic Supplements


Studies show that creatine supplementation can be of value if increasing muscle strength for anaerobic exercise is your goal. “It really only works in athletes like sprinters, strength athletes and football players,” says Dr. Vincent Disabella, DO, past president of the American Osteopathic Academy of Sports Medicine and a sports medicine specialist with Premier Orthopaedic Associates of Southern New Jersey.

He advises his athletes to “cycle” creatine by taking the supplement for eight to 12 weeks and then going off it, with five grams per day being the ideal dose. “When people start taking any more than about five grams a day, they start getting stomach cramps and gas from it,” Dr. Disabella says.

Glucosamine Sulfate

For middle-aged athletes who want to protect their joints, glucosamine sulfate may be of some help. “The evidence is mixed, depending on which sources you look at to see how effective it is, but it definitely seems safe,” says Dr. Matthew Gammons, MD, who serves on the Board of Directors of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine and is a physician at the Vermont Orthopaedic Clinic and the Killington Medical Clinic.

“It doesn’t boost performance, but it may protect you so that you can perform longer and better,” Dr. Gammons notes, adding that it may also be of benefit to younger athletes suffering from cartilage injuries. The recommended dose is 1500 milligrams per day.

Vitamin D

Athletes across the board may benefit from vitamin D, which is a prohormone essential for healthy bones. “There is some evidence that low vitamin D levels affect performance and injury risk,” Dr. Gammons explains. Levels tend to drop in the winter months, as sun exposure is a primary trigger for the body’s production of vitamin D.

“We supplement our athletes in the winter… it may protect their bones a little bit from things like stress fractures and may help their performance a little bit,” Dr. Gammons says, pointing out that taking 1,000 to 2,000 international units of vitamin D per day is ideal for most people. “Universally it is a good thing to take, even for overall health.”

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Most Popular

To Top