THE ROLE OF SUPPLEMENTS IN YOUR DIET PROGRAM
Supplements are NOT food substitutes. Instead, as the name implies, they “supplement” and complement a well-balanced diet.
Supplements can make up for deficiencies in your diet in certain cases. For instance, if you’re not getting enough protein, a protein supplement can help you to make up for insufficient dietary protein.
But relying strictly on supplements to the exclusion of food can set you up for failure. I have people ask me all the time:
We’ll get to what I take shortly. As to how much product to use…
If I was selfish, I would say, “Use as much as you can.” But that’s not going to help you. BALANCE is the key.
Supplements can also improve the quality of your nutrition by helping you get an increased concentration of one or more nutrients that you desire to increase in your diet. Take vitamins and minerals for example. It’s hard to get all of the vitamins and minerals that your body needs for optimal performance by eating a regular diet, even if that diet includes vegetables and fruits.
Today, the ground is so depleted that our vegetables and fruits don’t contain the amount of vitamins and nutrients that they did in the days of our ancestors.
Supplements can buy you convenience. Let’s face it. It’s tough to get all of the small meals that you need every day in order to provide a continuous source of nutrients and protein to your muscles. As many of you already know, meal frequency is a keystone of keeping your metabolism high.
That is why I recommend a breakfast, a lunch and a dinner consisting of real food with protein supplements used in between in order to cover the 5-6 meal requirements of my Lean Body Program.
Most of us don’t have the luxury of time to cook or prepare 5-6 real meals, so that is why protein supplements are useful. With that said, always remember that the base of your nutrition should always be your real food (like I said, at least 3 real meals) and then the protein supplements added to that. DO NOT EVER substitute all of your meals with protein supplements as this will not yield the results that you are looking for.
Also, here are various diet examples that show how to incorporate supplements into your diet based on the goals that you have.