Other than food, what supps do you feel are essential to optimally bulking naturally? Essentially, What supps would you never bulk without?
In order of importance:
(1) A solid, multi-purpose protein powder
-Biotest Grow! or Low-Carb Grow! ($23 / 640 total grams of protein) both suffice nicely.
(2) Essential fatty acids
-I use a combination of Health From the Sun flax oil ($11 / 16oz.) and Member's Mark fish oil caps ($8 / 300g).
(3) Post-workout drink
-Biotest Surge (just over $2 / serving), no question. No other PWO product even compares.
(4) A green food powder
-I use Greens+, as do many other members here. It costs about $30 / month, retail. Garden of Life also puts out a good product, but for me, it is not as palatable.
(5) Creatine monohydrate
-Benefits have been documented repeatedly, with almost zero negative accompaniments. I use ProLab's brand, which can be obtained for about $20 / kg online.
These are my essential five. Anyone else?
Good to see someone else posting from Tennessee...I think I may have a good idea who you are.
Likewise. Tennessee boys are not exactly a common occurance around here. Haha.
Even protein is only needed if you are carrying so much size already that it makes it harder to meet that requirement from food alone (as in someone close to or over 200lbs). Creatine is not essential. I don't even use it anymore and haven't for a while. It has a purpose but if you aren't making gains on your own, something is wrong and that needs to be fixed first. Food is the most essential "supplement". Water might be a close second. Rest after that. For all of the focus I see on random supplements, very few seem to be just blowing up with muscle at amazing rates...unless they are just in hiding. I don't think most people understand how important your food intake is. There is nothing more important other than working out effectively.
Just to underscore the thought, my response was geared primarily toward this question:
No, of course supplements are not essential. People were making gains well before the advent of supplementary nutrition.
Maybe to put a spin on the original question, in your experience, what foods would you deem to be most advantageous for bulking? Obviously total caloric intake is critical, but I was curious about any foods you found most helpful (whether they are more nutrient/calorically dense and so on).