The supplements that actually work - personal experiences
Whenever you have a supplement you might be interested in, check the Examine website. It summarizes all the major studies on whether a particular supplement works. I saw some of you guys talked about lion's mane. Here's the related page: https://examine.com/supplements/yamabushitake/.

(Yes, I have a new account and this is only my second post. But I'm in no way associated with that site. It's just an excellent resource.)

The things that I take myself that have some scientific backing are:

- Creatine (muscle growth / gym performance)
- Vitamin D (general health)
- Bacopa (memory)
- And some modafinil once in a while. That's a pharmaceutical, not a supplement, but it works well and is safe when used responsibly.
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Are mushrooms actually purchasable in DC now?
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(03-17-2021, 04:37 PM)churros Wrote: Are mushrooms actually purchasable in DC now?

Sold online or via phone order and delivered to DC residents

https://420dc.com/where-to-get-the-best-shrooms-in-dc/
https://boingboing.net/2021/02/02/you-ca...on-dc.html

According to the seller,
"10-15 pieces will kick you into God Mode: walls might melt."
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Hope this can contribute to the forum... The below have given me noticeable benefits, either in mood or physical changes/recovery. Listed in most noticeable to least.
sunflower lecithin
zinc picolinate
horny goat weed
Red ginseng
tribulus terrestris
liver tablets
vitamin D3

These supplements are ones I haven't seen any noticeable benefits
ACV
Drenamin
maca gelatinized powder

Most of the time I go with the recommended dose because I'd see side effects from too much zinc or tribulus. Personally I usually get dehydrated or lose more hair when it's over done. So now I use it every few months.
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Strong list, I like most of those too.

I've only been taking zinc and glucosamine recently and making more of an effort to eat super clean. Feel goooood
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I'm going to start blending chicken liver, freezing it in ice cubes, and then adding it to my veg smoothies
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I love liver. Organs in general are spectacular. Big fan of chicken hearts.

I'm off the shake train cause my blender fucked up and i haven't bought a new one yet. Needa get on that.
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Hemp gel, not a supplement but an alternative to chemical painkillers if you have muscle or ligament pain.
Not as effective as the chemical stuff but it is a good natural alternative.
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Lemon balm for anxiety/ sleep. Same for Kava.

Kratom for pain. Although it does give you sorta opiate high. Use with caution.
A peasant is given a choice by a benevolent witch: 'I will do to you whatever you wish, but I warn you, I will do it to your neighbor twice'

The peasant, with a cunning smile, tells her, ‘Take one of my eyes!’

Slovene Proverb
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Not a supplement per se, but taping my mouth while sleeping has helped me sleep better and my breath is noticeably fresher in the morning when I do.
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So, a brief update on all this:

I experimented with some ingredients this year while continuing. Conditions were that I was eating at a surplus (bigger than I knew, in fact), lifting heavy, but not doing much cardio other than floor mat stuff. Bloodwork was all normal. I tried adding things for a month and seeing if I noticed a difference before adding anything else.

Gingko Biloba - Fail. In theory, this improves libido and has other alleged good impacts, but I didn't notice. Since it also acts as a blood thinner and I'm already taking fish oil, I tossed the bottle after a month.

Citrulline - Fail. In the studies, this boosts blood arginine better than dietary arginine, as it is more bioavailable for conversion to arginine. Arginine acts as a vasodilator and has exercise benefits and may have sexual health benefits. It's possible these benefits only materialize if you're deficient, but either way, I saw no benefit and added a jar of dry roasted peanuts to my desk as my go-to snack. Naturally high in arginine and healthy fats.

Bee Pollen - Fail. I didn't really expect anything from this, but my (reputable) supermarket health brand was on sale so I thought I'd try adding it. Supposedly, the antioxidant content is impressive if it comes from the right sources, but my greens powder already has a strong antioxidant complex. Supposedly, it can improve lipid profiles, but while this is always ambiguous and involves dozens of factors, my LDL was slightly elevated when I had my bloodwork taken last week - just as I finished the bag. It's the Aquaman of superfoods.

Flax Seeds - Success. They're a different kind of dietary source of Omega-3s, and high in fiber. My digestion noticeably appreciates my morning smoothie now.

Collagen - A success, I think. I'm using the Vital brand that also includes hyaluronic acid. I'm mainly interested in maintaining my joint health, and there's some evidence for this, but I can't speak to this yet. However, I think it might also be making my hair and nails come in healthier, which is the type of thing most people are taking it for. The bottom of my nails - roughly the parts that have grown in after I started - have a visible line in them where they are more reflective when the sun hits them. It's surprising.

Current stack: Unflavored whey, greens powder, collagen, flax, sunflower lecithin, plus fish oil and a men's multi with an herbal complex.

For now, I'm going HAM on my workouts with a lot of extra cardio so I won't experiment with this right now, since it'd be impossible to tell what was causing any changes.

(12-23-2020, 10:31 PM)pannenkoek Wrote: Whenever you have a supplement you might be interested in, check the Examine website. It summarizes all the major studies on whether a particular supplement works. I saw some of you guys talked about lion's mane. Here's the related page: https://examine.com/supplements/yamabushitake/.

Examine is a legit resource. You need to read it closely to figure out what's going on sometimes, but there's really good information in there.
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My experience with gingko biloba was the same jetset, only ever purchased it once. I like flax too but the rest I've yet to try.

I've been eating clean and simple with minimal supplementation since my last post. The only pill I've been taking is glucosamine to keep my joints healthy. My diet outside supps has been a constant work in progress.

Stopped taking zinc because the one I had was causing some insomnia and anxiety symptoms on account of it having b vitamins in it too.

Rather than taking fish oil I've been eating sardines multiple times each week and sometimes make a meal of another type of fish like salmon or barramundi. I might take fish oil with me when i travel in future but I definitely prefer getting my goodies from food rather than pills.

I realise this is a supplements thread but my experiments in supplementation have led me to mindfulness of my wider diet: lots of vegetables daily, lean meat, green tea and making sure to include various things where i can (eating sauerkraut or kimchi, making tea out of goji berries, using ginger where possible, drinking loooots of water each day). I'm not that guy who's gonna pass on a slice of birthday cake but outside such occasions I really don't eat sweets and I don't do any fast food.

Have had a few people comment on me being a health freak on account of my diet, it's interesting because I've been doing this so long it feels totally normal. I'm not sitting around freaking out about sugar, I just don't think about it and day to day I feel better than I ever have.
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(09-29-2020, 10:53 PM)Wintermute Wrote: I realise this is a supplements thread but my experiments in supplementation have led me to mindfulness of my wider diet: lots of vegetables daily, lean meat, green tea and making sure to include various things where i can (eating sauerkraut or kimchi, making tea out of goji berries, using ginger where possible, drinking loooots of water each day). I'm not that guy who's gonna pass on a slice of birthday cake but outside such occasions I really don't eat sweets and I don't do any fast food.

Have had a few people comment on me being a health freak on account of my diet, it's interesting because I've been doing this so long it feels totally normal. I'm not sitting around freaking out about sugar, I just don't think about it and day to day I feel better than I ever have.

Yeah, my ideal dinner is roughly equal portions lean meat, dark greens (broccoli, brussels sprouts, wilted spinach or kale), and a complex carb.

However, there are a lot of days where things just don't work out - including getting decent quality seafood - and most breakfast foods just don't do it for me in the morning when I'm in a hurry. I just can't enjoy it on a workday and will end up eating a bagel.

That's where the smoothie comes in. One serving of whole fruit, one serving of greens in the powder, protein, and some fiber. I used psyllium husk powder for a while. (You want to take efficient dumps? You will shit like Robocop if you put a teaspoon of psyllium husk in a shake every morning.) Flax has been perfect while I'm trying to keep it clean, though. So that's what I'm building on with the collagen.
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Yep. If you've got things going on there are always days where your best laid plans go to waste. I'm not above having a canned soup or cafe sandwich if i need something quickly. I'm satisfied as long as i can look back on my week and feel as though i ate right 80% of the time.

Being totally ignorant of food intake is one extreme, the other extreme is counting every single macro in every single thing you eat, and I think both extremes are unhealthy in different ways.

Liking the smoothie idea though, just because you can get so much in them. I really need to get another blender.
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Just got back from the asian grocery, got a big ol box of korean ginseng
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2020 was surprisingly a fun year of dating/bangs (amongst other things) despite gaining significant weight around March.

Prior to March 2020, I utilized a combination of:
1) Distance Running
2) High Intensity Interval Training
3) Abs/Weight Workouts
4) Majority plant-based diet

^The above helped out tremendously with losing belly fat and overall slimming down though I had issues with upper body chub.

I would fix the issue involving upper body chub with:
1) Warm up jogs
2) Extensive stretching after warm up jogs
3) Followed by longer distance running
4) Plant-based protein shakes 

Post March 2020, I started getting paranoid about the Rona while temporarily staying with my parents to avoid going crazy.  Needless to say with all they were feeding me, I got fat.  I also developed some habits such as:
1) Quitting exercising
2) Indulging in Vitamin C pills which slowed down my metabolism
3) Daily Zinc pills
4) Still intaking protein shakes

^The combination of my body taking all those supplements resulted in making it harder to lose weight.  I've heard Vitamin C pills can slow down metabolism as it was tough for my system adapting to a sudden change in supplement overkill.  

I would lose a bit of weight in Fall 2020 by:
1) Qutting Zinc/Vitamin C pills
2) Yet still indulging in not just plant-based but also whey protein shakes too.  
3) Getting back to my workout routine.  

I think whey protein is very polarizing because it's supposed to be the best protein for killing off belly fat.  
In my case however, protein shakes made it harder for me to lose my gut as it turned my soft belly fat into a "hard visceral gut" which is exponentially harder to eliminate.  Supposedly, manufactured proteins (or proteins in general) such as whey with BCAAs (Block-Chain Amino Acids) can be transformed into glucose stored into the belly similar to that of carbs if the body is not consistently active enough.  I think this is what happened to myself ten-fold.  

Links:

1) https://www.quora.com/Why-is-fat-increas...supplement

2) https://www.livestrong.com/article/41138...belly-fat/

In Spring of 2021, I quit protein shakes altogether temporarily as my visceral belly fat merely became soft fat again.  I wasn't making the progress I wanted so the Youtube Channel Gravity Transformation gave me some interesting tips that were effective:
1) Instead of running daily...try 80 minutes of walking daily.
2) I was always active walking say 30 minutes a day but mainly in sandals.
3) It's amazing how walking in some form of athletic shoes is way more effective than maneuvering around in sandals.
4) I'm about to complete week 4 of this routine as I'm already losing soft belly & chest fat as well!
5) It's supposed to be a 6 week program though I've been cheating on my diet hella crazy.  

Some new additions to my routine were recently included being:
1) Walking for about 60 minutes as a replacement for my "warmup jog" before stretching and then subsequently running 1-2 miles.
2) Adding some treadmill-based incline walking at incline level 7 and 4 miles per hour for 20-25 minutes post high intensity interval/weight/abs training.  

I never quite understood why dedicated lifters would use training bikes for both their high intensity training/cardio on top of just long durations of walking....but it's starting to make sense now.  

I've heard and personally felt that too much long distance running can tighten your body a bit too much as "tighter muscles" can make it hard to burn calories.  There is very little tightening when going through longer durations of walking in athletic shoes. 

I'm definitely open-minded towards reverting back to daily plant-based protein shakes as it actually tightened my abdomen after losing my gut in 2019.  It's not fully gone yet so will hold off.  As for all the excess whey protein I have, I might indulge in that again but max once or twice a week after I lose my gut while keeping those 80 minutes of distance walking in tact too.
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Distance running in my opinion is a fantastic athletic endeavour in and of itself, but a suboptimal way to lose weight.

Regular walking is enough to keep the kilos off provided your nutrition is dialled in, which yours clearly is. Awesome stuff man.
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(06-13-2021, 06:03 AM)Wintermute Wrote: Distance running in my opinion is a fantastic athletic endeavour in and of itself, but a suboptimal way to lose weight.

Regular walking is enough to keep the kilos off provided your nutrition is dialled in, which yours clearly is. Awesome stuff man.

Yep I'll still do distance running 3-4 times a week; however, it's for 1-2 miles max as walking for even longer distances balances my body out along with the other stuff I do (HIIT & weights).  

Hardest part about long distance walking?  Time consuming not to mention I have to find a random isolated bush to piss in frequently as that urge dissipates with distance running.  

I'll still snack on bananas/whole grain bread with peanut butter before some workouts (if I get hungry) though I'll usually have sweet potatoes or purple yams as my starch with my stir fry veggie meals.  

If stir frying veggies, I add ginger, onions & garlic and only use extra virgin olive oil.  I'd say steaming veggies is the healthier option but I like that extra probiotic being garlic/onions/ginger being mixed in as that tastes better with oil.
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(09-29-2020, 10:53 PM)Wintermute Wrote: I never quite understood why dedicated lifters would use training bikes for both their high intensity training/cardio on top of just long durations of walking....but it's starting to make sense now.

One thing I found in my old gym routine that was doing moderate cardio was a solid warm-up but kind of wearing me down before I would lift.

Doing intense cardio on the spin bike for 20-30 minutes in the morning, on the other hand, kicks my system into gear the whole day. I have way more energy to lift after work and can get through higher volume hypertrophy and endurance sets faster. It is definitely a positive addition.

Just to mix it up, though, I'm keeping running/walking in the mix one day a week, weather permitting.
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(06-13-2021, 11:31 AM)Jetset Wrote:
(09-29-2020, 10:53 PM)Wintermute Wrote: I never quite understood why dedicated lifters would use training bikes for both their high intensity training/cardio on top of just long durations of walking....but it's starting to make sense now.

One thing I found in my old gym routine that was doing moderate cardio was a solid warm-up but kind of wearing me down before I would lift.

Doing intense cardio on the spin bike for 20-30 minutes in the morning, on the other hand, kicks my system into gear the whole day. I have way more energy to lift after work and can get through higher volume hypertrophy and endurance sets faster. It is definitely a positive addition.

Just to mix it up, though, I'm keeping running/walking in the mix one day a week, weather permitting.

Intense cardio is definitely the best for me as well.  These circumstances within the last year have however been strange consuming all these Vitamin C/Zinc pills along with Whey protein sources resulting in visceral-based hard belly fats which is something I've NEVER dealt with.  

-Whenever I had issues with soft belly fat, 1-2 weeks worth of high intensity interval training, abs, distance running, and weights were the norm for killing all of that off.  

-Visceral belly fats took a good 3-4 weeks of daily 80+ minutes worth of brisk walking in athletic shoes which was more of a gradual drawn out approach to successfully eliminate.  



Quote:Just like you store the leftover food in your freezer for future use, our body has a mechanism to store nutrients for future use. But that ‘future’ if not well planned, it can lead to overloading of your freezer (say body)
You should first understand that protein cannot be directly stored in the body like glucose (in the form of glycogen) and fat. So whatever excess protein you ingest that is not of any immediate use,your body will first convert it to glucose. If this excess glucose (apart from whatever you ingest as carbohydrates) remains unused, it will be ultimately converted to fat for storage. Remember, this is something extra that the body needs to accommodate. So it starts storing excess fat in the abdominal region that gets deposited as Visceral fat (fat layer on internal organs). This shows up as BELLY FAT!
Firstly consider reviewing the amount and quality of protein that you have in your diet apart from whey supplement. If dietary protein intake is more than you require (in terms of calories), and on top of it you are also taking protein supplements, you can end up dumping more protein than your body can handle. Do consult a dietitian before starting any supplement. Excess protein intake can affect your kidneys and also lead to auto-immune disorders.

https://www.quora.com/Why-is-fat-increas...supplement
 
^This lady right here pretty much nailed the situation I was dealing with.  

I can't find the other source but just read that the human body on average can only process 10 grams of "whey protein" max per hour; keep in mind a single scoop full of 25 protein grams leaves an excess of 15 grams that's stored as glucose in this case becoming visceral belly fat opposed to soft belly fat (sources of this are carbs/sugar albeit faster to burn off).  

Whey protein is technically lactose free but still a milk-based protein as I guess our bodies are not naturally built to absorb that unlike meat or plant-based proteins.  The resulting visceral fat is more dangerous than soft belly fat since visceral is located right next to our kidneys, organs, liver, intestines, etc making type 2 diabetes/high blood pressure a greater likelihood.    

When I'm in the US however, I usually avoid eating meat & heavy amounts of dairy frequently since these are all super processed with hormones, etc.  Grocery store meats will often be labeled "no added hormones" meaning there's already been hormones injected which creates similar visceral fats for my body at least while offsetting the benefits of protein.  Chicken in the US is the absolute worst since hormones lead to the animal doubling in size while offering less protein than beef/pork.  Since hogs/cows are already big to begin with, hormones lead to some growth but not to the extent of chicken.  

Even boneless salmon is likely "farmed" with hormones so I prefer to consume my fish-related meats with the bone inside.

All of this is quite the contrast to when I consume pork/chicken/beef outside the US where the protein found in those meats speed up my metabolism to where I'm losing weight....yes...I actually dropped many pounds eating steak & ice cream almost daily during my last trip in Brazil.
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