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Get Your Glutamine


Skeletal muscle is the most abundant tissue in the human body, so the fact it serves as the primary amino acid pool supplying the body with proteins in times of need is no surprise, especially when your bodily systems are under conditions of stress, including dieting, heavy training and injury. Scientists have been very interested in the pathways that mediate muscle wastage in such conditions. Recent research indicates hyperexpression of myostatin is a key player in this response. In the most basic sense, myostatin in the body acts as the brakes for muscle growth.

Glutamine, the most abundant amino acid in skeletal muscle, is depleted during and after heavy stress. Years of research has demonstrated supplementing with glutamine before and after your training sessions leads to greater protein synthesis and decreased catabolism.

Evidence indicates the muscle-sparing and anabolic effects of glutamine supplementation are a direct outcome of its ability to inhibit myostatin, essentially taking the “brakes” off muscle growth. In a study publishes in Amino Acids, researchers showed that when muscle cells were exposed to TNFα (to induce catabolism) and supplemented with glutamine, the process completely reversed the hyperactivity of myostatin and therefore halted catabolism.

Since its genetic discovery in 1997 supplement research and development teams have been on a dedicated search to fine safe and effective compounds that inhibit myostatin. Remarkably they have discovered a well-known amino acid can effectively reverse the negative impact of myostatin hyperactivity. Although this study was completed in vitro (in a controlled environment such as a test tube or Petri dish, not in a living organism), it provides a powerful mechanism for the muscle-sparing effect of glutamine, therefore reinforcing the importance of pre and post-workout glutamine supplementation.


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I Have A Very Diverse Diet And I Consume A Ton Of Calories Everyday. Is It Still Necessary To Take A Multivitamin?


For some people, multivitamins are a waste of money. Since hard training athletes often need additional supplementation, it is better to stick to food-based multivitamins. You should also focus on consuming specific vitamins and minerals that athletes are notoriously deficient in such as zinc, magnesium, vitamin D, fish oil and curcumin, which are beneficial for performance and overall health.


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Water Consumption For a Dry, Shredded Look


I should keep water consumption low to maintain a dry, shredded look. True or false?

False. Aside from perhaps the day of a contest, there is no benefit of being dehydrated. It impairs growth, recovery and ability to train. In fact the best way to avoid looking bloated is to drink plenty of water, limit carbohydrates and consumption and ensure your electrolytes are balanced. Aim to drink about 1.5 to 2 litres of water per day, limit carbs to fewer than 50 grams and supplement with electrolytes while training.


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Consumption of Protein Shakes


I know that protein shakes are beneficial post-workout. Is it as good to have them at other times of the day?

You can drink protein shakes through the day between whole-food meals to supplement your protein intake. If you are struggling to make gains, it is recommended to drink a protein shake before going to bed. A supplement with multiple protein sources such as fast-digesting whey and slower-digesting casein, is ideal.


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Should Creatine Be Taken With Grape Juice To Spike Insulin?


Grape juice contains a high level of fructose. Fructose is one of the worst carbohydrate sources for bodybuilders, especially in things like fruit juices. Specifically spiking insulin post-workout can actually be detrimental. Post-workout, starving muscles are wide open to receiving nutrients for repair and growth, and when we flood our bodies with simple carbohydrates the muscles quickly slam the door shut. Consuming BCAAs, protein and some fat is preferential immediately following a workout.