Like any athlete, vegan and vegetarians need supplements for nutritional benefits. The only difference is that it is a bit tricky to find the right vegetarian supplements or vegan supplements.
Like we know, vegans will not consume any animal-derived nutrient too.
Today we pick this topic of the best vegetarian and vegan supplements to complement your everyday fitness schedule.
Top Choice of Supplements for Vegetarians
Like I mentioned earlier, it is a challenge for vegetarians to feed the body with balanced nutrition, especially when you work hard to build muscles. But without supplementation, there will no result as your body craves for good nutrition.
A balanced diet does not help enough in this case. Because your body still needs extra protein and BCAAs for example to build muscle mass. So, here is your choice for taking vegetarian supplements in stride and in confidence.
1) Creatine Monohydrate
Let me put the hard fact first: creatine can be sourced only from animal meat in the diet and thus, vegetarians have no choice but to switch to a supplement like MFF Creatine Monohydrate 200 Mesh.
It is no exaggeration to call it one of the best vegetarian supplements for body building. It is crucial to increase the creatine stores in the muscle as it releases energy and improves muscle strength. A good supplement works efficiently to deliver strength training.
Similar Article: The Benefits of Creatine Monohydrate Powder
Another important fact attached to creatine is that you should consume it only for muscle recovery, which means only if you do hard workouts. There is no point having it for jogging or cardio for example,as it doesn’t require long hours of gym investment.
As we know, BCAAs are protein synthesis nutrient agents and touted as one of the best supplements during and after the training sessions. BCAA are helpful in gaining muscle mass and critical to supplement our muscle health which lacks enough nutrition from a low-calorie diet.
Why it features as one of the top vegetarian supplements is because their diet profile does not provide BCAAs sufficiently.
Jacob Wilson, Ph.D., director of the Human Performance and Sports Nutrition Lab at the University of Tampa has explicitly confirmed this fact implying that plant based nutrition (protein) has a low profile of essential amino acids.
Thus, it is really a diet rich in meat which helps build the essential amino acids profile, a must for an increase in protein metabolism. A BCAA supplement works good as it prevents muscle breakdown and assists in muscle recovery.
A good BCAA supplement is therefore important and according to me, one such BCAA supplement is MFF BCAA 5000. It is a perfect blend of only the required amino acids (Leucine: 2500 mg, Iso-leucine: 1250 mg, and valine: 1250 mg in every 5 gm serving) in definite proportion. And it comes at such an affordable price of only Rupees 1699 for 5000 mg of packet or 50 servings.
3) Whey Protein
A vegetarian lifestyle will typically include plenty of proteins; it is the first thing which enters your mind, we know its many benefits. Then, why do you need supplements for a vegetarian diet?
The reason is simple as bodybuilders or athletes who don’t get sufficient protein are likely to put both muscle growth and repair at risk. And, the fact that vegetarians deprived of meat, fish or chicken, for example, makes it more important for them to include vegetarian supplements.
Similar Article: 10 Benefits About Whey Protein You Didn’t Know
Extending the logic of meat-less diet, the top protein supplements for vegetarians is whey protein and it doesn’t stop here; you need whey protein isolate.
Whey Protein Isolate or WPI is a class of whey protein that contains about 90% protein which is made possible after several ion-exchange and micro-filtration process. It contains the least amount of fat and carbs. A typical 60-gram (2 scoops serving) of Whey Protein Isolate contains around 52-54 grams of pure protein and about a couple of grams of carbs and other ingredients.
Why whey protein isolate is important?
- It saves vegetarians from the demerits of a meatless dietand completes your amino acid profile.
- High whey protein isolate gives you the required protein benefit which lacks in a plant-based and animal-based diet together.
Where to buy the best Whey supplement
Formulated with high grade whey Protein isolate, MFF Whey Protein 90 Isolate is my top choice. A single serve of 32 grams gives you 26 grams of pure protein and 5.8 gm BCAA and 4.3 gm Glutamine, which is one of the best amino acid profiles in whey I have come across so far.
4) Casein Protein
Since vegetarians require a lot of protein, there is another recommendation- casein protein, a type of protein found in cow’s milk. It accounts for 80% of the total protein obtained from cow’s milk.
Casein protein is a good protein source as it contains essential and non-essential amino acids both. Now, the reason we recommend both whey and casein supplements is: casein protein is a slow digesting protein source and it has a low content of BCAA while whey is fast digesting and contains BCAA too.
Then why have casein at all? It is useful for two reasons: firstly, a slow digesting protein means it is good to take it before bed to feed your body with continued nutrition while you rest and secondly, casein protein does not have amino spiking properties, meaning less amount of protein goes to waste and ultimately reduction in whole body protein breakdown.
Related Article: What Is Casein Protein And Its Benefits
Why whey and casein over other protein powder sources?
- Both have essential and non essential amino acid profile
- Low on carbs in comparison to quinoa, beans, etc
- Good for hormone balance unlike soy protein which has a high level of estrogen
Every protein has merits and demerits both, but whey and casein our top choice for vegetarian supplements especially whey, which can be consumed anytime and anywhere.
A good supplement is MFF Calcium Caseinate 90; it provides 28gm protein per 32gm serving, 5.7gm BCAA and 5.4gm Glutamine. The fact that Calcium Caseinate is producing using an alkaline substance (Calcium) adds more points to this supplement.
Top Vegan Supplements
Vegans have a bigger challenge when it comes to intake of balanced nutrition. Because they don’t eat animal sourced products (also), their choice is limited but no way less. Like any athlete, vegans also need supplements to get the nutrition benefit.
Animal based proteins have high protein content than plant-based proteins. Thus, a vegan (especially a bodybuilder) needs to supplement the macronutrient more efficiently.
A vegan bodybuilder needs to consume a dose of around 1 gram as per the lean muscle mass. It means you need to subtract the body fat to measure exactly your lean body weight.
An average person with a medium built will have 10-15% body fat, which means if your weight is 80 kg, your lean body mass weighs around 70 kg and you need consume almost 60-70 grams of protein every day.
Similar Article: All You Need To Know About Vegan Protein
1) Vitamin D
Vitamin D deficiency affects the health of vegans especially in maintaining the required calcium levels and bone strength. Its other benefits for health like weight loss and cardiovascular health, makes it essential to supplement with Vitamin D pills.
A simple blood test can help you determine your Vitamin D level and accordingly take a maintenance dose of vitamin D.
Why you need multi-vitamin in addition to Vitamin D is because the nutrient contents of fruits and vegetables are affected by rise in contamination of it. Thus, you need vegan supplements like: B12, Zinc, and Iodine.
3) Omega 3
Omega-3s can be naturally sourced from animal food and thus, it is one of the top supplements for vegans. A vegan body builder requires flaxseed powder, walnut and chia seeds nutritional supplements to correct the deficiency of Omega-3 fatty acids.
Vegan BCAAs are a must in a body builder diet and a regular dose of 7-10 grams is recommendable in the morning, afternoon and every evening. It reduces muscle swelling and helps build the muscle mass.
All the supplements mentioned so far can benefit you the most, only if you plan it to consume it at the right time. Whey for example is a good pre and post workout supplement and casein on the other hand, is best before bed.
In addition, you need to have the best quality product so that there is no compromise and I recommend MyFitFuel for your entire supplement requirement. It offers you certified products along with good literature on why and when to consume it. You need that information, right?