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Supplements the debate/discussion thread

Discussion in 'Sports Arena' started by Freefaller, Sep 1, 2009.

  1. Freefaller

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Jun 5, 2003

    Posts: 86,983

    Location: Falling...

    This is quite a long read, and I won't appreciate TLDR comments and will take it as a breach of forum rules. If you can't be arsed, don't bother. :)

    There has been a lot of heated exchanges between some members about supplements (please let us keep names and supps of the "natural" kind :)), whether they be protein powder, amino acids, fish oils or other such products such as antioxidants, adaptogens and so on.

    This is my view and my opening bid for this discussion.

    Protein powder: I think that once you have a good diet well established and I mean an honest good diet if you're training hard enough that your body requires the extra protein then I think it's perfectly sensible to supplement your body with extra protein. This is especially true if you play intensive sports such as rugby for example where your body gets injured and requires extra healing - whereas protein isn't a magic cure, your muscles depend on the amino acid content of the protein to help regenerate muscle tissue.

    Furthermore if you are vegetarian it's a fantastic way of getting cheap extra protein in your body, that meat eaters would get a lot more easily from their day to day diet.

    However, I tend to take shakes on days I train to give myself a spike, the whole bank holiday for example I wasn't training and not once did I touch a shake or any supps bar some fish oils. However I did eat accordingly, well it was BBQ weather after all! :D

    Essential Amino acids: possibly more important than protein itself as the human body does not store excess amino acids for later use, and as such the protein synthesis won't be as powerful or efficient and the nitrogen balance will be impared. Sounds all a bit gobbledegook doesn't it? Well essentially your body cannot synthesis these amio acids, therefore you need to ensure you get them in their "raw" format in your diet. The name "essential" means exactly that, they are needed by your body as your body cannot "create" them from other strings in your body.

    Does this mean you should buy lots of EEAs? No. Not at all. However, from my experience when I have added them to my diet, I have noticed a reduction in DOMs, and longevity in training and faster recovery. A lot of protein shakes have a good amino acid profile anyway so it's not always necessary. You can get a lot of amino acids through diet, but that's where a very varied diet comes in. Having chicken, tuna, eggs, and spinach EVERY day is not going to do you any good.

    Other amino acids: such as OKG etc... OKG in particular I have had very positive results from. Does this mean it should be used? No not really, it's bloody expensive for a start, and whilst it clearly (no psuedo science BS) increases anabolic proterties within your body it's too expensive to be a necessary supplement for me, but also isn't required or isn't that important for day to day life. There is a big list of other amino acids, again most of them are found in a protein powder of good quality but some stand alone as completely non-standard in terms of diet, and probably why they have such a decent influence in the correct doses. However, again, it's expensive, and unnecessary for most people, to bar the high end atheletes which none of us are.

    Creatine: the longest used/researched supp. There's a lot of debate about this one - which one to go for, which one works, some dont' work for some etc... Creatine works by pulling the water from outside the muscle cells - inside and thus allowing the muscle to exert a higher level of contractile force. It basically helps fuel muscles. This basically means you will be able to lift more weight during your workouts. I have to admit I havent' really "felt" I have got much of out creatines - but I know when I have been supplementing with it in the past, it probably did help but it's not like a cup of coffee where you "feel" the caffeine kicking in. Plain fact is, if you have a decent amount of red meat in your diet you probably have enough creatine in your body. However, there are a lot of non-pseudo bits of research on it. It's up to you to decide whether or not it works for you.

    Adaptogens: these are my favourite by a long shot and I do use these from time to time. The reasons I like them is because they are 100% natural, extract typicaly from plants. These are really helpful for things such as reducing stress, improving mood and focus and energy and potentially reduce cortisol levels. Things like gingseng, cissus, rhodiola rosea, reservatrol etc... Pretty much all adaptogens are nigh on impossible to get into your daily diet and hence why I feel they have such a powerful effect on people with a healthy diet. It's a bit hippy I guess, but these are one of the few sort of supps I do rant about.

    Fish oils: The popular one. We all know that our diets have difference immensley since the time we were first created as beings. Fish used to be staple is now a "luxury" for most people. The amount of fish oils and general EFAs (EHA DPA etc..) in our diets has shrunk considerably. There are soe many good effects from EHA DPAs in our diet that to me it seems daft not to have them in it. I do buy a fair bit of fish, but I admit my tastes have got used to having, lamb, beef, chicken etc.. as well, so fish is not always on the menu and whilst other foodstuffs contain the omegas and other EFAs we need it seems daft that such a good supplement for you (there are no bad connotations unless you take them by excess, but then what's new?!).

    Some of the reasons why I feel supplementation can be sensible is because from what I've read, and from personal experience in the world I live in, m odern diets are short of adequate daily nutritional requirements. Some nutrient deficiencies can make us prone to certain ailments, potentiall obesity and disease. Supps can help to overcome the negative effects of poor eating habits - but that's a key point, you should sort out your poor eating habits first rather than cover it up by loading your body full of supplements.

    Ultimately what supps do is to helps fill the gaps that food doesn't provide
    Modern agriculture suffers from depleted soils, excessive use of pesticides and also the refining processes lower nutrient content in foods - hence why I try and buy unrefined goods as much as I can - close to impossible now though. It could be argued that supps are refined, but then they are not foods are they? It's a tough one to accept I guess. I also read in the news realtively recently that a sample of green beans I think it was, were actually close to 20% short of nutrient content that it should be!!! After a bit of research it seems that a lot of veg and fruit are shy of their full nutritional content - I didn't look too much into meat, but from what I've seen other than injecting meats with water and meat proteins they still hold some value, but the quality of the meats can be brought into question - leading onto whether or not you believe that good quality meats contain more nutrition - from a taste perspective, an independently farmed chicken tastes miles better - and I have taste tested it blind folded. Seriously try it. A friend of mine who is a chef did the same with eggs. I cooked him eggs 3 ways, from 3 different types, caged, organic free range (supermarket), and a local farm that you go and pick your own eggs within hours of being hatched. Poached, fried, and scrambled. He got the caged egg right every time. He got the organic/free range egg and the "real" egg, wrong once where he got the poached one the wrong way round.

    Another thing that kills nutrient contents in food is the processing, transporting and storing foods. Supps with high quality plant enzymes, whole food vitamins and chelated minerals can help to replace the vital nutrients that arent' present in modern diets, but again it's not entirely necessary if you buy good quality foods as best you can.

    One thing that happens a lot and is hard to avoid are chemically treated foods which can lead to all sorts of things such as allergies, dysfunctions etc... Also modern lifestyle can have a huge effect on our bodies and food sources, though I don't necessarily believe that things like EM waves, microwaves etc.. can be that damaging, but again, it's something to consider. I'm just trying to give a rounded all point opinion. :)

    I think as a race we are far more stressed than we used to be and as such, stress can compromise bodily function and can deplete vital nutrients. Also people are taking more and more "pills" to overcome their stresses, whether they be analgesics, contraceptive pills etc... They all affect our bodies... But what's new? Is that an excuse to supplement, or just try and chill out more, look after your health more? You decide. I vote for the former - but I agree it is hard to relax sometimes.

    So should supps be regarded in the same way as taking pills to manage your day? Tough one... I say no, but I don't take pills and I don't take a million supps every day so I can't tell. However, I know for fact that more people die every year through the uses of prescription drugs so although those are also researched and tested, they still can cause side effects etc.. so it could be deemed that taking any extra stuff into your body might not be doing your body any good as it stresses the body out potentially? However, a lot of the supplements are natural, and available in your daily diet, so why would they be harmful? Unlike prescription drugs or other over the counter solutions they are chemicals that actually interfere with your body and it's hormones (the pill, head ache tablets, anti allergens etc...). So it's a tough call. I'm not enough of an expert to tell you what to think on that one.

    So to summarise, I have some minor reasons that I believe supplementation can be good, or worthwhile, taking into considering your whole lifestyle, diet has been evaluated and honestly analysed are:

    To correct nutritional deficiencies either through diet choice (vegetarianism etc...) or owing to allergies to some foods containing useful and important nutrients. Or through poor foods being available to you.

    To replenish what is missing in your foods (vitamins, minerals, enzymes, flora, and antioxidants). Again this should be an honest analysis, are you doing the best you can to get all the nutrients in as part of your diet?

    To provide your body with the nutrition necessary to combat today’s environmental stresses. This is one I do believe can be helped, I'm a big fant of adaptogens as I mentioned earlier and natural plant extracts and teas can really help give you a boost in this area.

    To meet the higher nutritional needs of your lifestyle choice. If you're into lots of sports and bodybuilding etc... you are potentially pushing your body beyond the enveloppe of what your nutrition can offer you - again this is down to an individual to analyse whether or not he/she falls into that category.

    This is contentious, and I'm not sure I personally believe this but there is talk that it could potentially help decrease your risk of chronic & degenerative diseases... but surely that would be part of a healthy lifestyle choice more than supplementation?

    I personally believe we an overfed and undernourished society. Our deficiencies have been created by our “modern” society and diet which cause the body to be more prone to certain things such as: viruses, disease, infections, obesity, allergies, headaches, stress, strokes, a weak immune system, to name a few. Look at the nation now... we have more obesity than ever before, we have more asthma as allergic sufferers (fish, milk, wheat, nuts etc...). A hundred years ago, unfortunately such people would probably have passed away, in a way we've been cheating death. I personally believe that modern science and medicine has hidden the dangers of our poor lifestyles.

    Today’s “modern” diet does not provide enough of the nutrients we need - for the average person, though I reckon a lot of us in this fitness/BB game probably punch above our weight in terms of lifestyle and diet. I doubt more than a handful of the population get their "5 a day". People's diets in general are too high in fat, sugar, sodium, and saturated fat, and doesn’t provide enough vitamins, minerals or fibre to meet our nutritional needs.

    Ultimately you need to be honest to yourself. It's your money, and is it your subconscious telling you it's working? Or is it REALLY working? No one can judge that. I, personally, have had a mixed thought on some of these supps, some have greatly helped and have had a positive influence, others I can take or leave. One thing I will still and always be a fan of are natural extracts (root, vegetable etc...) that are hard to get in your daily diet and help enhance a GOOD DIET, rather than REPLACE it. Some supps can work synergistically with your diet and body, but dont' expect miracles and RESEARCH!!! It's the most important thing. There have been some very very in depth studies on some of these supps, and others have been very weak.

    Ultimately these products exist because people have researched them and have believed that the body requires extra boost. I also believe that modern diets are poor, even if we do the best we can - so whilst I'm anti loading yourself with every supp under the sun for the sake of it, I believe there are uses for them and they can help.

    In conclusion, supps have their place in modern society. They certainly have their place if your diet is poor. They also have a place if you're pushing your body beyond it's normal capacity. It is plain fact that some of them can, and do, help regenerate your body, improve well being and help you life a healthier lifestyle. However, I would choose to try and live that lifestyle minus supps as much as possible, to minimise the supps you need to take. Not because they are bad per se, but a) they're expensive b) you can get the nurtients you need by eating well, c) understand what's causing you to be ill/run-down etc... Address the root cause of the problem is often more important than the peripheral causes - sure a short term solution may help, but if you don't get to the root of it, it'll just start to grow again.
  2. drunkenmaster


    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 33,048

    Modern diets are crap, but I couldn't care less, most people who workout or want to eat healthily will do so and people who don't do either won't be using supplements.

    The main situation for using supplements, if thats what you want to call them, is losing weight. Because its the one situation where you are eating less food than normal, but want the body to work harder to burn fat, logically the two things simply don't gel together. You can't ask your body to work harder while eating less.

    For putting on weight, protein's more than fine, largely because whey is a very very cheap and easy source to get protein from.

    But for me, I don't really care what most people want to label these things as. If you want vit e , you can eat it in several foods, or take a pill, its the same damn stuff, and if you need it you need it, its just food packaged differently.

    I don't supplement with protein, I need protein, its that simple, I choose for the sake of simplicity and budget, and I actually really like the shakes I make, to have whey protein, rather than burgers, its just food.

    EAA's and other things are, for me, a joke, the cost for those substances aren't in the weight, but in the separation. in a 30gram scoop of protein which costs maybe 10-30p, you get more in weight of the EAA's than in a £0.50-1 serving of EAA's from any other source. In other words, throw in an extra 10grams of protein for far cheaper and get the same amount of extra EAA's.

    Splitting products up just to get marginally higher percentages of a substance at a higher cost than just having more to start with, makes no sense. Its like chia seed vs Salba a supposedly marginally better "brand" of Chia seed. Its not magically better, if you eat 15grams of Salba, you'd want 16.5grams of generic Chia seed to get the same benefit. yet 15grams of Salba will cost 5 times the amount of 16.5grams of Chia seed anyway, its worthless.

    If your diet is poor so called "supplements" will do nothing. If you are trying to get to your peak, certain things to make sure you aren't lacking in can help, but if putting on weight, you're likely eating more food than normal and already a higher intake of nutrients and vitamins anyway. Again I go back to the one real situation to make sure you aren't lacking nutrients, is losing weight when you're taking in less food than normal.
  3. Freefaller

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Jun 5, 2003

    Posts: 86,983

    Location: Falling...

    I agree with this.

    Though as you stated modern diets ARE crap - therefore adding extra nutrients it to balance it out, is it a waste of time or not?

    I'm not defending either the use or the lack of use, I'm genuinely interested in hearing people's thoughts.

    Personally I think whey has it's place for a lot of reasons - certainly for you as you're a veggie. I agree about EAAs etc..
  4. TheCenturion


    Joined: Mar 18, 2008

    Posts: 12,752

    I agree with both of you. It's a similar debate to the weight loss pills/ other crap. People tend to believe that if they spend money on these things, then it's a good substitute for effort and common sense. The one I find funniest is the Ab belt that you can wear which gently vibrates on your stomach to "tone and define your abs" :rolleyes:

    Shame on consumers for believing it, but it's pretty disgraceful that companies are marketing fake products and exploiting ignorant minds. Then again, Nvidia does this with all its renaming schemes.

    Back on topic, as DM said, supplements won't really help if your diet isn't up to scratch. Even for me as a vegetarian, if I wasn't interested in bulking then I'd say I get enough of everything except possible creatine. But as I'm bulking, I tend to take a shake only on workout days. Having said that, I only take half a shake, as it's enough for me.

    Most of the people at my school who use the gym only use the machines, and none of them eat nearly enough. Then they tell me "The way to do it is to get really fat, then workout to convert it to muscle"

    I would say that beginners make the mistake of too many supplements, and not a good diet, then don't see the gains they expected, and end up quitting.
  5. dun


    Joined: Nov 5, 2004

    Posts: 4,617

    Location: West Midlands

    I'm going to just do a quick reply mate as there's a lot a information in that first post.
    For me 4 sups 'work':
    Fish oils, Creatine, Whey, Glucosamine

    Fish oil: Haven't been on these that long (6 months perhaps) but they've now become a daily staple. Too many health benefits to list, just all round good guys.

    Creatine: Debatable, as I have no real "evidence" for it. For me the first time I started taking it I grew very quickly from water weight (a couple of kg over 2 weeks) which mostly was lost when I came off. But the next time less gains but no loss. Now I take it few months on, 2 weeks off and to be fair feel/ see very little benefit from it.

    Whey- Training days I have 30g within 20 mins of finishing my workout most days. It works if you need the extra protein, if you don't then don't bother, it isn't some magical super drink like most newbs seem to think.

    : Again bit of a debatable one but after getting quite sore/ aching joints a few months ago I decided to try them out and IMO it works. When I feel the aches and pains I take 1 tab and normally its gone by morning instead of taking over a week if not more. Hardly proof, but like I say it works for me.

    Everything else this side of naughty is highly questionable imo. A good diet >*
  6. Jeffstar


    Joined: Mar 8, 2007

    Posts: 578

    Location: On top of a Goldmine

    Back in the days when i could be arsed i would have loved a good debate in this thread. Now i couldn't care less tbh, much more important things to do than bang your head against a wall over such an unimportant subject :D

    One hypothetical question i will ask though.

    If two men with identical genes followed the same diet/training routine and ate the same amount of calories etc (you get the idea) One man took supplements and the other didn't, who would develop the most muscle?
  7. dun


    Joined: Nov 5, 2004

    Posts: 4,617

    Location: West Midlands

    What the??? I saw Jeffstar and said to myself "WHO NEEDS SUPS, ALL BS blah" haha.

    Imo there would be little to no notable difference, but if the one was getting more calories from his shakes then obviously over time that one would develop more. But only the same as if he ate more normal food.
  8. Volcs

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Nov 6, 2004

    Posts: 2,496

    Location: Angel

    I've ditched a lot of the sups I used to take for a variety of reasons - no longer use whey as I'd rather get it from food and I'm not especially looking to bulk so don't really need the extra cals they provide.

    No longer use glucosamine after reading a lot of the negative studies that have come out in the past 18 months or so (they generally conclude it does have a pain relieving effect, although it's no more than that of a placebo).

    I do still take fish oil as I don't think I get enough from my diet, the benefits have been proven and it's cheap.
  9. oli collett


    Joined: Apr 19, 2004

    Posts: 4,777

    Location: London

    Instead of using personal anecdotes to make points, would it not be better for people to cite peer-reviewed papers? The nutrition/supplementation industry is full of pseudoscientific nonsense and for all the explanations of why supplements should work, there's no evidence that they do work. Randomised, controlled trials should be available to demonstrate that they are effective (pubmed being a good starter for this info).

    With that in mind Freefaller, what evidence is there of modern farming methods destroying nutritional content in food? Because the recent FSA meta-analysis found nothing to support that organic farming was any better, and that's pretty much the most complete review i've yet seen (see Ben Goldacre for further comment on that review here). Do you have a link to the news article about green beans? I can't see how a sample that's 20% lower nutritional content is at all statistically relevant. Either way, it's rare that such articles match up with the research they are talking about.

    As for eggs/chicken - I'd like to see a fair, like for like test that compares organically reared chicken meat/eggs. In my mind the biggest thing with eggs would be freshness (which would explain your scenario) and for the meat you're always going to have problems with equal size, although half the problem with processed chicken is the water injected into it to plump it up (as you pointed out) which could lead to cooking complications.

    I'd strongly recommend anyone who hasn't already to read the book Bad Science - it's an eye-opener to the nutrition industry and other aspects of alt-med. There's a good extract here - The Medicalisation of Everyday Life

    And lastly, my favourite example of how ludicrous some of the claims nutritionists make would be this Cochrane meta-analysis:

    For all those boasting about how anti-oxidants preventing X, Y, Z and curing every known disease on the sun, the gold standard of research concludes (on the prevention of mortality):
  10. clv101


    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 9,890

    Location: Bristol

    I've never used supplements believing them to be nine tenths marketing hype, as oil_collett pointed out the scientific basis is patchy at best. I do have a very good diet of real food though.

    However, now that I'm taking triathlon more seriously and upping my training to ~8hrs a week I am interested in 'recovery drinks'. Basically how best to recover after a hard session knowing that more often than not there's another session less than 24hrs away. I'm currently having milk, a banana and salted nuts within half an hour of getting in - any advice?
  11. Freefaller

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Jun 5, 2003

    Posts: 86,983

    Location: Falling...

    Oli - that's the whole point of this thread is to spark a debate. I seldom use vitamin supps etc... I just have a good diet, but I do use whey and fish oils and herbal-type of supps which work for me - it's going to be an independent thing.

    As for the FSA study, I trust it about as far as I could throw it, which all things considered would be pretty far, but you get my meaning.

    I'm opening up the debate to include presumptions, conjecture and theorising. I also don't believe all the sales pitches supp companies do. I've used myself as a bit of a guinea pig over the years of my training to evaluate the results, and keeping as much other factors constant (i.e. diet, sleep, exercises performed etc...) - not very scientific maybe but that's all I can base some of my expeirences on... on what... erm, I've experienced! :D Now, my cholesterol, blood pressure and visceral fat has decreased to what my doc said was very healthy levels, blood tests were good, I could be a bit fitter, but my recovery is pretty good nonetheless, though my cortisol levels are a little higher than I'd like, and I have a little bit of stubborn fat around the sides. Now I've always been healthy, having a multinational family and upbringing, and being brought up with exquisite foods and wonderful cultures around me I was exposed to a lot of wonderful lifestyles - I was very lucky I admit... however my adult life has been predominantly based in the UK, except in my last job where I spent my life living out of a suitcase.... whilst I didn't get fat, and I did some exercise to keep fit, I wasn't THAT fit or had the physique I wanted (I was just around 82kg or so), though I ate very well, and I've never had a sweet tooth, or enjoyed vices such as smoking and drinking. Since being based in the UK, my diet has improved as I've learned more about this game, my exercise has increased (taken up rugby and squash again) and I'm tipping the scales at 100kg or so, as well as being in a good state according to my doc. Now, I can't prove if that's purely down to what I eat (I still don't drink (maybe 1/2 dozen units a month) and don't smoke) or the bodybuilding/powerlifting training I've been doing, or whether it's the whole package supps and all. My lifestyle is not bad now - I could do with more sleep, but couldn't we all? I was theorising and decided to share my ramblings and open up the debate. :)

    As for the quality of foods, well I base my personal experience from having been around the world a million times and tasted various foods. So again not scientific - I was making suggestions however to trigger a debate. For example biting into a tomato in Cyprus your mouth is filled with so much flavour that it's quite a sensory overload. Here in this country, you bite into a tomato and you get a wet mouth with hardly any flavour - that surely must mean something in terms of quality no? But I am an absolute food snob.

    Just in case you DIDN'T realise, I'm not advocating or supporting the use of supps, as I'm very much in the mind that if you eat well, good food, well sourced and keep away from refined, mass produced, cheap and manufactured foods you're likely to get more than enough nutrients than you need.

    However I'm suggesting, that in some cases some supps are worth looking into, and some are just marketing hype, and drew on personal experiences.

    I think there's enough evidence for and against modern farming methods, and so on to give a balanced argument, ultimately it's what you convince yourself of. A lot of good physical health is down to good mental health too. :)

    Hey it's cool if you don't like supplements, I'm right with you. It's cool if you're happy with different quality foods, you're alive, healthy and doing well. I'm not telling people what to eat or not to eat, I'm triggering ideas.

    I still believe that modern lifestyles, diets, and stresses and strains of the world do us no good and do our bodies no good. Then again how can I run a test on myself since I've already lived all this life and couldn't do it fairly again? ;) However I am a hypocrite as I live this modern lifestyle - but without the modern lifestyle mantra. I don't think I';ve ever been stressed in my life :p

    I don't know if 2 people with the same diet, same genes and same calories whether or not the supplemented one would achieve more results - my guess is, there's a good chance he would - however, by how much? I doubt it would be HUGELY visible, but for the money - definitely not worth it. Why would the supps (and I'm talking about the actual researched ones used in medicine as we speak) not give a boost?

    I'm not saying my sentiments are correct, I'm not saying i have the answers, but I wanted to have one place to discuss all of this. :)
  12. Makunouchi


    Joined: Feb 4, 2008

    Posts: 3,410

    Location: Brighton

    Same here, I absolutely despair of the farming methods used in this country. I was at my parents place in deep rural France over the bank holiday weekend and the fresh produce doesn't even compare, its ridiculous. And you just know the nutritional value is completely different as well :(
  13. oli collett


    Joined: Apr 19, 2004

    Posts: 4,777

    Location: London

    Oh I enjoy debate, just wanted to get more input via studies and whatnot. Did you read goldacre's piece on the FSA study? I haven't seen a single sound critique of the study from the organic camp. They've accused them of cherry picking simply because they have discarded poor-quality studies (that is of course the point of a meta-analysis). Even if you look at the results including the discarded studies, they aren't exactly very pro-organic.

    So, basically, I don't understand why you wouldn't "trust" it - it's sound, solid science.

    Well flavour in tomato generally = high levels of glutamates. I guess you could argue that's nutritionally better in some respects. But anyway, things to consider to me would be firstly the freshness and second the climate. How was the tomato produced in cyprus anyway?

    Nope, I realise that, the problem I had was really with the no nutrition in processed modern farmed food, an argument which doesn't seem to have any evidence behind it.

    Yep, and to make it clear - I'm saying that if a supplement is worth looking into, it should have the relevant trials to back it up (it should have such trials anyway for safety reasons!). There are, for example, trials on pub-med suggesting HMB could offer a small benefit, especially in people new to bodybuilding. There's no reason why there should not be similar papers on other supplements, which is why I'm calling for such evidence.

    I'm quite welcome to hear the evidence against "modern farming methods" and nutritional content and I'm happy to debate that - it's just that I've yet to see any reviews which should convince me that the FSA study is inconclusive.

    You do realise that they use exactly the same techniques everywhere else in the developing world? Yes, they have organic farming in France, Germany etc. however it's not to the same standard as the soil association in the UK. How do you know the nutritional value is better anyway? By tasting it?
  14. Simon


    Joined: Oct 21, 2002

    Posts: 22,469

    Location: Berks / Moscow

    Good thread.

    Thoughts on Colostrum? Either within a protien shake powder or seperate?
  15. triggerthat


    Joined: Aug 26, 2005

    Posts: 6,821

    Location: London

    I thought I'd ask here.

    As discussed many times, it seems that protein shakes should be used to supplement a very good diet. I've noticed a few people have been recording their nutrition intake and was curious to know why lets say a can of tuna is better than a shake? Am guessing it is irrelevant that they both contain around 20g of protein? As a result, surely one shouldn't really add 20g of protein from a shake to their diet record? If anything the amount should be halved (or maybe not)?
  16. Skeptic


    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 3,769

    Location: UK

    Just to add a bit of a curveball into this thread. I struggle with getting the necessary protein from meat, and rely strongly on protein shakes. While my weekly diet is fine, daily it's not so good (i.e in a week I will have 2 fish meals, 2 meat meals or whatever - generally a similar amount to what a normal healthy adult would eat.)

    Most of the time my diet consists of good carbs (oats, wholemeal pasta, wholemeal bread, quinoa) along with poor protein sources (meats such as bacon, chorizo, continental meats, cheese, quark, yoghurt, etc) and then i bump up the protein intake with a shake. So for example, I might have wholemeal pasta with a tomato sauce and bacon, and a protein shake. Macros for the meal would be 80g carbs, 50g protein, 20g fat. Other times I would have a big bowl of oats, a protein shake and a banana - and this would be one of my meals for the day. Obviously have veggies etc too.

    I see whey as food, not as a supplement, so when I see posts saying 'whey is just an addition to a good diet', I disagree as I see whey as a staple of a good BB diet. There is evidence to suggest that whey supplementing is beneficial to general muscle longevity and health, which is a bonus too.

    I am progressing nicely, but carry a bit too much fat (no doubt to the poor protein choices I make), but the docs say I'm fine, I'm gaining, cardiovascularly healthy; what more can one ask for? Can always shift the fat later on ( I don't carry a lot, just more than I'd like).

    I also supplement with omega 3's (who wouldn't when they're so good for you?). I'm not at a stage to try BCAA's, but these will be next on the list.

    As an aside, I enjoy trying new supplements. I'm a huge fan of milkshakes in general, and a nice protein shake with milk is a treat for me - seems I'm on to a winner. Allowed to have 2 or 3 shakes a day, which taste fantastic, and are allowing me to be healthier and look better - why would I choose dry chicken with plain pasta? Personal preference I guess is key.
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2009
  17. Makunouchi


    Joined: Feb 4, 2008

    Posts: 3,410

    Location: Brighton

    I'm not going to continue this here because the thread is about suppliments, not farming methods, but you aren't correct. Farming is far too intensive the way we do it, organic or otherwise, although in rural France I've seen it done in a way I agree with much more. Companion planting, resting land, rock dust usage, organic tea brews, leaving a certain percentage of the crop in the ground to decompose etc are all things we don't do, but should. I was trying to look for a website I used to go to made by an american guy that pretty much summed up my feelings about farming, but I can't for the life of my dig it out, never mind.

    Edit: It was Bob Cannard - http://www.exploratorium.edu/gardening/feed/index.html (Everybody gets lunch)
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2009
  18. oli collett


    Joined: Apr 19, 2004

    Posts: 4,777

    Location: London

    The farming methods came into it because both you and freefaller made unsubstantiated claims about modern farming methods leading to lower nutrient levels.

    Do you really think those massive fields over in France are farmed in the same manner? Of course not. You'll get some producers over there with small farms producing things in the same way they have for centuries. You get the same thing over here. It might be more prevalent in France due to the high levels of subsidies, but I don't believe for one second that's how the majority of food is produced in France.

    Anyway, what you've said:
    Companion planting - yes, it is used. Both in conventional farming and it's used extensively in organic farming. See here

    Resting land - set-aside land? It was ended 2 years ago in conventional farming but they are now looking at bringing it back.

    Not sure what you mean by rock dust usage as an organic fertiliser. I assume this is to do with the long held belief that non-organic fertilisers have a detrimental effect on land fertility. This and other stuff is covered fairly well in this paper here. I'd recommend reading that paper, he covers a lot of ground on a lot of organic myths. He also addresses things like why people think organic food tastes better and why a more sensible approach would be one combining the use of both synthetic and organic sprays which would be better for both environmental and human health.

    Not sure what you mean by organic tea brews though, but anyway - as I said, I was just making the point initially refuting the idea that modern farming methods reducing nutrient levels, which has been shown both in the FSA study and the Trewavas paper above to be a myth.
  19. Makunouchi


    Joined: Feb 4, 2008

    Posts: 3,410

    Location: Brighton

    Ok, you clearly know more about this than me, so I will bow out at this point and go read the paper you linked. However, I know what's best in my mouth (don't even think about it), and that's what matters most to me :)
  20. Freefaller

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Jun 5, 2003

    Posts: 86,983

    Location: Falling...

    Couldn't agree more. Furthermore, mental stimulus promotes dopamine release and boosts your immune response, ergo making you feel better and therefore promoting your well being. Which in turn is better for you as it reduces cortisol levels. It's win win really :D