Do young athletes need supplements? We answer the question.
If a youth athlete is eating three meals a day, everyday, then we can discuss supplements. This article is discussing youth athletes 13+ and supplementation.
The first supplement that we would recommend is creatine.
The most researched supplement on the planet is creatine. Lets knock out all of the creatine myths:
- Creatine doesn’t make you gain weight(only increase in weight is from the “loading” phase which we don’t recommend)
- You don’t need to “load or ramp” your creatine intake.
- Creatine is not a banned supplement.
- Creatine is not going to make you a superman or superwomen.
What is creatine good for?
Creatine in the short term is used for short bursts of energy. The simplest way to think of this is creatine helps individual cells store more energy. This stored energy helps your muscles.
Creatine is a popular and effective way to gain muscle. Creatine can stimulate several different biological processes that help an individual gain and retain muscle.
For those playing high intensity sports creatine is the most effective supplement. No matter your starting point creatine helps with ATP production which is necessary for any high intensity sport, such as soccer, football, wrestling, etc.
The second supplement I would recommend is Protein.
Protein is usually the the most lacking macronutrient that youth athletes have. If we are already hitting our 3 meals a day target and having protein at each meal but we are still short of our goals regarding protein, adding a protein shake after training is an easy supplement to implement.
Protein helps build bones, muscles, and skin and plays a vital role in growth and many bodily functions. Athletes that are participating in sports, strength training etc, need to hit around 1g of protein per pound of body weight. For example a 160# male looking to maintain his weight needs to be shooting for 160 grams of protein a day. Everyday including the weekends or off days where the training intensity might be lower.
Finally, the third supplement I would recommend for young athletes is magnesium
here are a lot of magnesium types so I would recommend a magnesium complex supplement such as this one(https://www.mitolife.co/collections/wellness/products/mag-atp)
A short break down of what different types of magnesium does for your body:
Magnesium sulfate. This is the king of magnesium for muscle recovery. This is frequently dissolved in water to treat stress and sore muscles.
Magnesium taurate contains the amino acid taurine. Research suggests that adequate intakes of taurine and magnesium play a role in regulating blood sugar. Thus, this particular form may promote healthy blood sugar levels.
Do young athletes need supplements?
Yes in certain cases. Always consult a physician and discuss supplementation before starting. Young athletes need supplements to ensure they are preparing themselves the best way possible for their athletic endeavors.