Before you make the decision to add supplements to your routine, consider a few things first. The best supplements for women are going to depend on your current diet, workout routine, and goals.
In my early 20’s I remember thinking I needed a fat burner. When I started looking at products I immediately felt overwhelmed. I didn’t want to waste my money on something that wasn’t going to work, but how was I supposed to know what worked? After that, I made it my mission to research ingredients and find out everything I could.
Meanwhile, I believe that there are companies out there who take advantage of the lack of customer knowledge. They rely on you not knowing what the ingredients do and then overcharge you. This is frustrating, so I decided to write a post dedicated to filtering through information and pointing you in the right direction.
Keep reading to learn more about the best supplements for women:
I’m going to sort through the following pieces of information.
- Guide you through what supplements actually do for you.
- Tell you what I think the best supplements for women are.
- Explain what you need and don’t need.
- Recommend supplements and brands I actually use and why.
It’s certainly worth pointing out that too often we want the easy way out. To go from point A to point B as quickly as possible, that all elusive overnight pill. Focus on proper nutrition and exercise first. Doing this will allow the supplements to aid in what you are already doing not make up for something you are not doing.
Alright, let’s learn!
Supplements will not take the place of a bad diet, period.
Do you eat enough fruit and veggies? As hard as I try I know I don’t, so I take a multi-vitamin everyday.
According to the CDC, 76% of adults don’t eat enough fruit and 87% of adults don’t eat enough veggies. Taking a multivitamin fills the gaps for those who are not getting enough nutrients from foods. As you age your nutritional needs increase, and you should be thinking about your heart health.
In addition, multivitamins support your eye health with vitamins A, C, E, and selenium. Your immunity gets a boost from vitamins C, D, and E, and some studies have shown a reduced risk for cancer.
Similarly, vitamin C provides protection against immune deficiencies, eye disease, and cardiovascular disease. In the colder months I add in an extra dose of vitamin C to help support my immune system.
Digestive Enzymes & Probiotics
On the list of the best supplements for women, digestive enzymes are high on the list. The healthy benefits of digestive enzymes not only include supporting healthy digestion but they also optimize the breakdown of fats, carbohydrates, and protein. They reduce gas, bloating, indigestions, and constipation following meals, support colon health and aid the body in the process of digesting difficult foods.
Probiotics help your body eliminate extra bad bacteria and provide you with good bacteria that help keep things in balance. They are made of good live bacteria and/or yeasts that naturally live in your body.
Digestive enzymes keep a healthy balance of good bacteria in your body. When you get sick the bad bacteria increases in number, the good bacteria work to fight off the bad bacteria and restore balance.
But what is whey protein?
If you are making a list of the best supplements for women, put whey protein at the top!
Milk contains two types of protein Casein (80%) and Whey (20%). Whey is found in the watery portion of milk. To explain, when the cheese is produced, the fatty parts of the milk coagulate, and the whey is separated from it as a byproduct.
Casein protein is slower digesting than whey protein. Therefore, I often recommend using this type of protein at night. An example of a casein protein would be cottage cheese. It makes the perfect bedtime snack, 1/2 cup cottage cheese with an apple or other fruit.
Many struggle to consume the necessary amounts of protein in their diet. I recommend 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. Subsequently, whey protein is an excellent way of getting the necessary amounts of protein to lose weight, build muscle, and aid in recovery.
In short, I highly recommend adding a whey protein supplement to your diet regimen, it will definitely help support your health goals!
In addition to a clean diet and exercise regimen I recommend adding L-glutamine and CLA. I take both these supplements when I’m training for a figure competition, which requires 2-3 workouts per day, so I want a little bit of a boost to my efforts.
What you take in has to be less than what you burn, period.
L-Carnitine is an amino acid that is produced in the body and helps the body turn fat into energy. It’s an important amino acid that plays a significant role in boosting metabolism. It does this by improving mitochondrial function and increasing cellular energy. Many athletes use it to help them burn fat, enjoy enhanced recovery, and prevent muscle fatigue.
CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) is a naturally occurring fatty acid found in meat and dairy. It is produced by grazing animals, and research shows that CLA reduces body fat in animals by increasing the amounts of specific enzymes and proteins that are involved in fat breakdown. Subsequently, many adults take CLA due to the claims that it helps aid in weight loss, but the researchers suggest that the benefits are greater in animals vs. humans.
Glucosamine and chondroitin are structural components of cartilage, the tissue that cushion the joints, both are produced naturally in the body. Some research suggests that this supplement can help with joint pain. If you suffer from joint pain I highly recommend taking this supplement.
When it comes to supplements for women you want to take something that has many benefits, not just one. Collagen peptides have many benefits, as a woman, I add this to my routine simply for the beauty benefits.
- The skin is largely made up of collagen so this supplement can improve your overall skin health. Several studies suggest that collagen peptides can help slow the aging of your skin by reducing wrinkles and dryness.
- Collagen can help maintain the integrity of your cartilage, which is the rubber-like tissue that protects your joints.
- Your bones are also mostly made of collagen, which gives them structure and helps keep them strong, so adding this to your diet can help prevent bone loss.
- They have been shown to boost muscle mass. Between 1-10% of muscle tissue is composed of collagen, this protein is necessary to keep your muscles strong and functioning properly.
- Reason five is all about your heart, research has been shown that taking this supplement may help reduce the risk of heart-related conditions. Collagen provides structure to your arteries, which are the blood vessels that carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body.
On the other hand, you might be wondering how you incorporate collagen peptides into your diet. No worries, I’ve got you covered! Keep reading for my favorite Collagen Smoothie Recipe.
More Energy & Pre Workout
Taking pre-workout supplements can be tricky because you don’t want to feel jittery or crash after your workout. Some pre-workout ingredients make your skin feel tingly while others have too much caffeine causing your heart to race. Taurine is the ingredient that tends to make your skin itch and tingle. If you see this ingredient on the label on highly recommend staying away from it.
Likewise, others contain more creatine that aids in muscle growth, strength, and recovery. But the downside of this supplement is water retention, as a woman that is the last thing, most of I want.
The most common ingredients in pre-workout supplements include:
- BCAA (Branch Chain Amino Acids)
- Citrulline Malate
- Vitamin B-12
Branch chain amino acids, electrolytes, vitamin b-12, and protein aid your workout and can help with recovery. I explain in more detail the benefits of branch chain amino acids below.
Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps keep the body’s nerve and blood cells healthy and helps make DNA, the genetic material in all cells.
On the other hand, if you are thinking about pre-workout supplements you should be thinking about recovery. Subsequently, amino acids get overlooked because many do not understand the benefits.
But the building blocks of protein are amino acids, which certainly makes them important. In total there are 20 amino acids, 9 essential and the rest non-essential, 8 of the essential 9 amino acids are found in your diet. Essential amino acids are required to complete protein synthesis because they are responsible for building protein.
For example, you can find these amino acids in things like meat, fish, and eggs, however, BCAAs are most commonly found in red meats. Essential amino acids are required to complete protein synthesis because they are responsible for building protein.
Branch Chain Amino Acid, refers to 3 essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine, and valine. This type of amino acid is an essential amino acid that has a branched structure that sets them apart from EAAs. They are fast-acting because they are metabolized primarily by the skeletal muscle because they skip the liver and directly enter your bloodstream.
I recommend and take NLA for Her: Her Amino Burner for my early morning cardio or go to the gym over lunch.
This supplement contains over 5 grams of powerful branch chain amino acids with an added 100mg of caffeine to give me a little extra boost. In addition, there are 9.4 grams of glutamine, which helps with inflammation and increases muscle recovery.
However, if you don’t want the added caffeine I recommend NLA for Her: Her Aminos. That way you can get the added recovery benefits of amino acids without the energy boost.
This supplement helps reduce inflammation and aids with recovery. Secondly, it’s used for energy production and is one of the 20 essential amino acids.
I notice my recovery time is much less when taking this supplement. Therefore, this has been my go-to over the years for better recovery.