Supplements? Part 3 of 3

Riptide CrossFit – CrossFit Nutrition Blog


Disclosure: We are not nutritionists, licensed dietitians, or medical professionals. We are coaches with years of experience in training, food as fuel, and coaching athletes at competitive and recreational levels. Please take this blog as advise, but not fact.

By: Najeeb R.

Welcome to the Riptide Nutrition Blog! Here you can expect to read a tid-bit on nutrition, whether it’s a Coach’s 2-cents, a good recipe, or a copy-paste of a great article. Enjoy!

For Week 4 of the Accountability Challenge we are learning about supplementation. Join our first WORKSHOP Saturday, February 4th with questions and more.


Today we feature the third of three parts of this great blog by Crossfit Invictus:

Top 7 Supplements for Athletes – Primary Supplements:

5. Protein, if taken within 10 minutes of training, will reduce the amount of stress hormones (mainly cortisol) released! This has a huge implication on belly fat (no pun intended). But don’t overdo it – 20-30 grams per hour is the maximum a body can digest and you only need .8-1.4 grams of protein per 1 kg of lean mass each day. Too much protein leads to body acidity which leads to many other problems. But the right amount of protein – besides providing energy – repairs tissues and reduces muscle soreness. Protein should be eaten – from primarily animal sources – throughout the day and most certainly within 10 minutes of training. Whey protein is a highly marketed protein and is fairly inexpensive so it is frequently used by athletes. Many, however, have an intolerance to whey such as gas, bloating and postnasal drip. Soy protein is not a good option because 100% of soy is genetically modified and it is very low in branch chain amino acids which are necessary to build muscle. It increases estrogen levels in the body – the opposite of what someone trying to build strength wants – and many also have a food intolerance to soy. Casein is dairy derived so if you have an intolerance to whey, you may have an intolerance to Casein as well. Vegan protein that combines a wide variety of sources can be good options because they are less likely to produce allergies. Remember, only 20-30 grams maximum at a time!


6. Vitamin C needs to be complexed to carbs to increase absorption so you don’t get SPO and you know what I mean if you’ve ever taken high doses of Vitamin C to “beat that cold”. That diarrhea is caused because the body is flushing out what it can’t absorb in the small intestine (your Vitamin C in the improper form). Vitamin C is mostly present in fruits – which contain fructose – thereby allowing your body to absorb the nutrient. If you are watching your sugar intake, there are products out there, like Bio Energy C, that use Ribose instead so you can avoid the insulin response associated with fructose intake. Ribose has also been proven to reduce oxidative stress (damage created by strenuous exercise) and aids in the removal of lactic acid as does Vitamin C so you get double bang for your buck with this product. Triple if you count the no SPO. But that’s not all! Vitamin C aids the production of our old friend, ATP, helps wound healing, and is a cofactor to building collagen and repairing muscle. The US RDA is 90 mg which is enough to prevent “index” diseases like scurvy. Athletes and other special populations should take a minimum of 4,000-8,000 mg a day and upwards of 16,000 mg a day as it is very difficult to overdose on Vitamin C. During and post-workout are the optimal times to take Vitamin C. You can even make your own energy drink with it and a few other, common ingredients!

Energy Drink Recipe:

1 cup coconut water

1 cup water

½ cup Organic Pomegranate Juice (no sugar added)

½-1 teaspoon Hawaiian Pink Salt

1 package Ola Loa vitamin drink mix (available at Whole Foods)

1-2 scoops Bio Energy C


7. Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), an important antioxidant also known as ubiquinone (good!), ubiquinol (not-so-good), and abbreviated at times to CoQ10. CoQ10 is the ONLY anti-oxidant found within cells and it allows the mitochondria to produce ATP. It also gets rid of of lactic acid (and other waste). CoQ10 SHOULD be in the news more because of its important implications to the heart – which is high in CoQ10 to keep us ticking – when it is depleted from statins (drugs used to treat high cholesterol) and “stressful” athletic training/exercise (ultra-distance athletes, crossfitters, etc.). There have been a number of young, ultra-distance runners drop dead of cardiac failure in recent years and the discovery was the lack of CoQ10 in their hearts which caused scarring and damage from years of training abuse and I don’t want to see it happen to any of you, my CrossFit friends! Anyone who participates in strenuous training or is on statin drugs should take CoQ10. The best, most usable form of CoQ10 is ubiquinone (not ubiquinol because it enters the bloodstream but does not go into the cells) and delivered in oil (make sure it’s an approved oil and not soy which is common). Since fats enhance the absorption of CoQ10 it can enter the cells. Make sure not to take your CoQ10 at the same time as your fish oils because it can actually inhibit the absorption rate. A recommended dosage of CoQ10 is 100-200 mg a day and higher dosages can actually be used to treat diseases such as essential hypertension and certain heart arrhythmias. If you are an athlete, try increasing your dosage when you are approaching an event to improve performance, endurance, strength and recovery. Post-workout is best but I’d caution against taking it too close to bedtime if you are sensitive to stimulants – it does stimulate energy, especially in the heart, after all. It will also be best absorbed if it isn’t taken with fish oil or other oil-based supplements as they literally battle it out for absorption.