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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    How safe is it to take body building supplements?

    Its been 2 months at the gym for me on fully natural diet, but trainers at my gym are pressing to take supplements like mass gainers, whey protein etc.

    After a little research I found that probiotic mass gainers are bad as they may contain steroids and secrete a lot of unnecessary hormones on long run. While there is no mention about whey protein etc.

    So how safe are they? Is it recommended I should take them? If not what other diet options should I follow. Thanks.

    About myself: Height-178cm, Weight - 56 Kg, Body Fat - 9.3%, Lean Mass - 45.8 Kg
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    Chris Fonda

    Dietitian, Nutritionist, Sports Dietitian

    As an Accredited Sports Dietitian, APD and athlete (springboard diver), Chris has both professional and personal experience in sport at the sub-elite and elite level.Chris … View Profile

    Good question. Unfortunately the sports supplement industry in Australia is not well controlled and there is a risk that taking a protein supplement will result in a positve doping result. So for many professional athletes I do recommend that they speak with their sports science team including a sports dietitian to make sure they prevent inadvertant doping. Unfortunately people get sucked into the supplement marketing hype with many supplement companies making sensationalist claims often not backed up by scientific evidence.

    It really depends on what your goals are. Sports supplements such as whey protein can have their place in a well planned training schedule and diet to support muscle growth, you just need to know the appropriate protocols and a sports dietitian can be your nutriiton expert here. You can find a sports dietitian by logging onto the Sports Dietitian's Austraila website (www.sportsdietitians.com.au) 

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    My research interests include immunology and the mechanisms of amyloid formation. The latter has implications for people who are dealing with Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease … View Profile

    I think that Chris has offered you good advice.
     
    From looking at the numbers (“Height-178cm, Weight - 56 Kg”) that you gave, your Body Mass Index (BMI) is in the underweight range. There are many possible reasons for this.
     
    I suggest that that you talk with an Accredited Practising Dietitian about eating in a healthy way, rather than taking advice from a “trainer” (whatever, if anything, that label may mean) at your gym.

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    Dr Amer Gilani

    GP (General Practitioner)

    I am working as a GP for more than 15 years. I have worked in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Australia. I can speak English, Urdu, … View Profile

    Well these things either have proteins or some times even steroids in it. The protein really increases work load on kidneys and that why it can not be safe.

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    Elisha Danine

    Nutritionist

    I am a Clinical Nutritionist, and I hold a Bachelors Degree in Complementary Medicine. I specialise in Women's and Children's Health. My areas of expertise … View Profile

    From a holistic nutrition point of view weight gain or muscle gain can be achieved through diet. You may have a fast metabolism that is keeping you underweight or maybe you are not eating enough. Have a good look at your diet and find a good clean australian protein brand to help supplement your diet. Dont be scared of using whey protein its one if the most important food groups required to build and maintain muscle mass.

  • Elizabeth Newsham-West is committed to optimising the health and well-being of people across all ages within the Mount Tamborine community.  She works as a domicillary … View Profile

    Research is showing you should get your nutrients from food. Don't be pressured by those pushing supplements.  If you  are trying to build muscle yes protein is the key provided you are getting enough energy from other foods. Milk can be one of the best foods for this or Skim Milk powder (SMP) is as good as any and miles cheaper. It is not just the whey protein that is important for muscle health but casein as well, and milk and SMP has both. And the other benefit of these foods is it comes with other other important vitamins and minerals.

    See these websites which support the use of food first.

    http://www.ausport.gov.au/ais/nutrition/factsheets/basics/protein_-_how_much

    http://www.sportsdietitians.com.au/content/2562/ProteinandAminoSupplementationforAthletes/

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