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With so many bodybuilding supplements on the market today, it’s hard to know which will actually help you and which are nothing more than a waste of money. Here, you’ll learn about a few different things that absolutely do not need to be a part of your stack.
CLA, or conjugated linoleic acid, comes in capsule form and is found online as well as in many specialty and nutrition stores. It’s a naturally-occurring fatty acid that your body makes from linoleic acid found in the food you eat. Many companies claim that it can help you gain muscle and lose fat at the same time, and some quote studies that back up this claim. In truth, CLA in its natural form – produced by the body from linoleic acid – is incredibly important to muscle growth. However, there are just as many studies proving that exogenous CLA bodybuilding supplements are pointless.
Carnitine is derived from amino acids, and science has shown that it plays an important role in the metabolism of lipids in a variety of animals. Because of this, manufacturers of bodybuilding supplements have started packaging L-carnitine and marketing it as a product that burns fat and boosts energy at the same time. However, the truth is that more than one large-scale study has shown it doesn’t work at all, and any effects that people get from it are simply placebo effects. For the most part, taking L-carnitine in hopes of losing weight is no better than throwing your money away.
HGH, or Human Growth Hormone, has been shown to drastically improve muscle growth and promote a younger-looking body. People use it with amazing results and very few side effects as long as they use it responsibly. However, HGH is not available over the counter, and doctors won’t prescribe it for conditions that aren’t related to a failure to thrive, which means it’s generally reserved for children with certain disorders. Companies sell HGH boosters that are supposed to improve the amount of HGH your body produces on its own, but numerous studies have shown that they don’t work and you can get the same results
Vanadyl sulfate is another performance enhancer sold online and in specialty sports nutrition stores. It’s a derivative of vanadium, which is a trace mineral found in nature. It’s a popular bodybuilding supplement because it’s said to improve the fullness of the muscles, making them look larger before competitions without the same side effects or risk of repercussion of anabolic steroids. However, there is plenty of research to suggest that the “pumped” result offered by Vanadyl sulfate is very small, which means it’s probably not worth your time or effort. What’s more, too much vanadium in your body can harm your liver and kidneys, too.
Although there are some bodybuilding supplements out there that can provide you with the performance and appearance enhancement you crave, there are others that are just a waste of your time. The four listed above may work for very few people, but for the most part, the benefits– if any – are minimal and they do not outweigh the risk of side effects.