NASM CPT 7th Edition Chapter 10: Supplementation 5

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Chapter Goals:

  • Be able to define the supplementation and the needs of the client’s diet in the world of supplements. 
  • Be able to give a summary of various supplements used for optimal health and body composition.
  • Be able to discuss the role of supplementation in the profession of personal training.

Introduction to Supplements

Diet supplements and performance concepts like foods that enhance wellness have been around for thousands of years. 

Supplements have gone beyond general health and entered the world of fitness and performance. They are quite common and useful in today’s world.

The fitness professional will often be asked about these popular supplements as they are considered part of the package by the clients.

What are Dietary Supplements?

They began as a way to add some key nutrients into the diet that were somewhat lacking in the diet. 

Diets are meant to be added and supplement some lack of something. They are not a diet in and of themselves.

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The rationale for the Use of Dietary Supplements

Younger people have been seen to use dietary supplements to manage their weight, immune health, energy, and general beauty. 

Older people have been seen to use dietary supplements for reasons like filling their nutrient gaps and for health specific concerns like bone and heart problems. 

A rising problem is the problems that come with taking in too many of the various nutrients and then ending up with some form of toxicity in the body.

Supplement Guidelines and Labels

It is required that dietary supplements are natural or, at the very least, present in nature in that form. 

They are regulated by the FDA in the united states.

General Guidelines for Responsible Use

Supplements are sought after for their ability to possibly improve health, performance, and other attributes found to be desirable. They can also harm people when not used right. 

They should never replace food but help fill gaps for us.

The intakes above the well known tolerable upper limits will usually result in some adverse side effects and toxicities. So, it is important to know the amount you shouldn’t be getting with the various supplements you or a client may be using. 

These are the guidelines for the responsible use of supplements:

  • Do not use or recommend dietary supplements without first checking the label and reviewing the published literature on the supplement or the supplement’s ingredients.
  • Do not exceed the recommended dose of a dietary supplement.
  • Look for supplements with a fully disclosed list of active ingredients; avoid proprietary blends until more is known about the supplement’s specific ingredients.
  • Do not recommend supplements to those younger than 18 years unless prescribed by a medical professional. Supplements are intended for adult use only.
  • Different dietary supplements should not be taken together or “stacked” without reasonable certainty that the supplements will not interact to produce an adverse event. Dietary supplements should not be used with medication. Nutrient–drug interactions can occur, and clients using medication should check with their physician before using supplements.
  • Those with a medical condition should not use dietary supplements without first asking their physician.

Dietary Supplement Labels

These labels will be quite similar to that of their food label counterparts. They have the same minimum requirements, but if they have zero of something, they actually are not required to list it. This is often seen with calories. 

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There are often some extra things, include like amino acid profiles of the selected supplements, and so on.

Health Supplements

Dietary supplements are put into the categories of health or performance supplements. Performance often sees more attention, but health supplements are the larger part of the market.

Vitamin and Mineral Supplements

These are typically supplemented in the form of multivitamins that contain many different vitamins and minerals. They even have these in individual forms if needed, but usually, the more common form is this multivitamin form.

The forms of the vitamins and minerals are important to note, as some may be more easily absorbed in the body, and others may not. This is true especially when we look at nutrients like iron. Heme and nonheme iron are responded to differently in the body, so it is good to be informed on that.

Omega 3 Supplements

These are well researched and quite popular as supplements.

They are usually sold in the form of fish oil. They can be a good idea for someone who doesn’t get the ideal balanced diet that includes some fish products or other similar sources of the necessary omega-3 foods.

Ergogenic Aids

An ergogenic aid is something that aims to increase the body’s physical ability to do work. It is a performance enhancer in supplement form. They can be legal or illegal.

Many ergogenic aids make promises without actually having any research behind them. But, some main ones out there have been well proven to work for their purposes of aiding performance.

Protein

This is a vastly popular supplement that comes in the form of powders and bars to help up the protein an athlete takes every day.

Essential amino acids or BCAAs are most commonly supplemented to up their intakes.

Creatine Supplementation

Creatine is a very popular workout supplement. It is used to increase the stores of creatine in the muscles, increasing the size and amount of lean muscle along with water weight to accompany the creatine.

Stimulants (caffeine)

This is a tried and true supplement that has been used for a long time and shows great results in performance. It is the world’s most popular supplement, and it may come supplemented with other workout supplements, possibly in the form of things like pre-workout drink mixes.

Ethical and Legal Issues with Ergogenic Aids

There are so many ergogenic aids available on the market today, which has caused an increase in the amount that actually does nothing. Because of this, it is important to look into the products being sold and know their real info. 

Many supplements will not do what they are saying it does online.

The three former ones we just discussed are really the only ones researched well enough to have confidence in.

It is important to know about the banned substances in sports performance. These are things like anabolic steroids. They are banned for use worldwide but are still quite popular substances. 

There are many poor effects on the body to be had with these performance-enhancing banned substances. It is vital to be informed on this subject as well. 

Expectations of the Certified Personal Trainer

Providing nutritional or dietary supplement prescriptions is well beyond the scope of practice for certified personal trainers, and it is important that we actually direct any questions that clients have to the actual professionals that can better answer them. 

Regarding advising clients, it is ok to give some general information on the substances that have been researched and covered well in this book. But again, prescriptions are off limits. 

Tyler Read - Certified Personal Trainer with PTPioneer

Tyler Read


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