Athletes all want to perform at the highest level. This means practicing and taking care of their body. The body uses something called the citric acid cycle to break down food into usable energy. We asked Dr. Rand what supplements he suggests athletes should take to reach peak performance and here’s what we found out.
“So if I had to say, ‘okay what are the basics you need to take no matter what’ it would be a B Complex, Zinc, Magnesium and Coenzyme Q10. They are absolutely essential to waking up,” said Dr.Rand.
So let’s take a look at what these vitamins are doing to help your body reach its fullest athletic potential.
B Vitamins help support your body’s process of turning food into energy. This gives you more bang for your buck energy-wise when eating. B Vitamins also help form red blood cells which carry oxygen to the lungs. This will help when doing a lot of running or cardio during a sporting event.
Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in your body. It supports muscle and nerve functions as well as energy production. Magnesium also helps maintain a healthy heartbeat. Other added benefits of taking Magnesium can include a lower blood pressure, reducing risk of heart disease, improving sleep quality and may help reduce symptoms of depression.
Zinc is a trace mineral, meaning the body only needs trace amounts of it to function. However, Zinc is needed in over 100 chemical reactions that take place in the body. Zinc plays a major role in creating DNA, the growth of cells, healing damaged tissue and supporting a healthy immune system. The recommended daily amount for Zinc is 8 mg a day for women and 11 mg per day for men.
Coenzyme Q10 or CoQ10 is found in almost every cell in the body, making it vital to helping the body function properly. CoQ10 is produced naturally in the body but tends to decrease with age. CoQ10 is a powerful antioxidant and participating in sports is the best time to take antioxidant supplements. Antioxidants fight free radicals in the body which are damaging particles that can break down cell membranes. CoQ10 also helps to improve heart health and blood sugar regulation.
Calcium is another great supplement to add to your list for athletes. It helps the body strengthen and maintain bones, teeth and muscles. This will help reduce injury and retain muscle mass when participating in strenuous activities.
Another important thing to consider is choosing the right multivitamin for you. Some things to consider are the appropriate daily values of ingredients, right balance for age and sex and essential micronutrients like Vitamin A, B6 or D2 or D3 and USP verification. USP is U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention which verifies whether certain supplements are pure and contain the ingredients listed on their labels.
Dr.Rand suggests that the perfect supplements for athletes to take are B Complex vitamins, Magnesium, Zinc, Coenzyme Q10 and Calcium. Pairing these with a standard multivitamin will be the best route to help athletes reach peak performance and keep their energy up for longer periods of time.
Check out the full interview of Dr. Rand from our Ask The Doc series here.