T Nation

Do Supplements Really Matter with a Good Diet?

I like protein shakes for their ease before school when I’m half asleep and don’t want to cook.

I’ve stopped taking basically everything but whey, fish oil and creatine now and really haven’t noticed any difference.

I like supplements for their recovery abilities more then anything else. I’m actually thinking about cutting it all out soon and just take fish oil.

I stand by BCAA’s beeing a very good supplement. Creatine might just be a scam, especially with a good diet, and whey helps me consume sick amounts of protein so it’s a staple.

Multi vitamins and fish oils though, I will use until I die.

Pareto’s principle applies here: 20% of the work gets you 80% of the results. That 20% of the work/cost is in maintaining a generally decent diet. The remaining 80% of the work goes into things like perfecting an already solid diet, supplements, etc.
In other words it’s a waste to worry about things that will get you a percent here and there at great cost if you aren’t already consistantly doing all the things that will have a major impact that are relatively cheap and easy.

The only sports supplement I use really regularly is creatine. I’ll also use sports drinks (my own blend) and post workout drinks like Surge since I can keep them down but I consider those a somewhat different category given that I lack real food alternatives I can stomach during workouts. Otherwise I take fish oil and sometimes some antioxidents for general health.

Supplements are just that: an ADDITION to an already balanced diet. The actual food you eat does most of the work, and whatever supplements you take are designed to help you cover the bases that perhaps you couldn’t through regular food - i.e. to compensate for lack of vitamins/minerals in your diet or to provide macronutrients when you don’t have time for a full meal.

Basically, they become a bit redundant as your diet becomes more complete.

[quote]ghost wrote:
Supplements are just that: an ADDITION to an already balanced diet. The actual food you eat does most of the work, and whatever supplements you take are designed to help you cover the bases that perhaps you couldn’t through regular food - i.e. to compensate for lack of vitamins/minerals in your diet or to provide macronutrients when you don’t have time for a full meal.

Basically, they become a bit redundant as your diet becomes more complete.[/quote]

Yeah, With a good diet and without any supplements for about 6 weeks now and I’m stronger than ever.

[quote]ghost wrote:
Basically, they become a bit redundant as your diet becomes more complete.[/quote]

Actually, I believe the opposite is true with many supplements – you’ll get maximum effect from them once your diet is more complete.

A product like HOT-ROX comes to mind in this case. You’ll see far better results with it once you’re eating, and training, correctly to lose fat.