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Fitness Nutrition

Whey protein – A quick no-nonsense nutrition facts article

Whey protein is commonly used by people of all ages as a popular diet supplement. After milk is converted to cheese, the residual liquid is called Whey. There are two major kinds of protein in milk – whey and casein. In the course of producing milk from cheese, there is a separation of a mixture of proteins from whey. This mixture of protein is called whey protein.

During the production of cheese, the fatty component of milk essentially coagulates together, leaving whey (usually found in the liquid part of milk) as a byproduct. 

The top building block benefits

BCAA Amino Acids in Whey Protein

Whey enhances our body’s consumption of BCAA (branched-chain amino acids) and proteins. Amino acids are a product of proteins. There are nine essential amino acids in whey protein. In addition to that, they contain a high concentration of essential BCAAs like Leucine. Leucine is an amino acid that enhances growth. There is also cysteine which boosts the levels of a cellular antioxidant known as glutathione.

Though the body is responsible for producing a percentage of our required amino acids, we need to obtain the rest from the food we consume. These amino acids, which our body relies on external food sources for, are known as essential amino acids.

They combine to form whey protein which is very effective in promoting growth in the human body.

The body uses protein for muscle growth and tissue repair. As food is digested, the proteins are converted to amino acids which are then changed to form new proteins. 

Why is it good for bodybuilders and athletes?

Joint Support for crossfit, weightlifting and powerlifting

Whey protein is popular among bodybuilders because it is an excellent source of the amino acids valine, isoleucine, and leucine. These are the amino acids that form the 3-branched chain amino acids that are necessary for muscle building. Humans need to obtain nine essential amino acids from food in order to survive and function properly.

Research has long established that whey protein supplements can promote athletic strength and a better immune system. But whey protein supplements are also being promoted as a means to improve mental focus, eliminate stress, and boost energy.

The release of anabolic hormones from whey protein results in a growth in muscle mass and strength. One such hormone is insulin, which aids muscle growth. The leucine content of whey promotes muscle protein synthesis in the body. Muscle growth is stimulated by amino acids and protein. Compared to other protein sources, muscle growth can occur faster with whey protein.

The effect that protein has on satiety is amazing. In terms of satiety, protein tops the list of macronutrients. It helps you consume a balanced amount of calories, increasing energy expenditure. According to research, your hunger cravings are reduced by 60% when you eat a quarter of your body’s daily protein requirement.

Whey protein can help to mprove your metabolism, whilst also regulating your appetite, and growing or maintaining lean muscle.

It has been established that ingesting whey protein powder helps to enhance your athletic abilities. It promotes faster recovery from workouts, whether you train with weights or not. 

Are whey protein supplements safe?

Chocolate, Banana and peanut butter protein shalke recipe

Whey protein supplements are largely safe if used in appropriate doses. The body stores the excess of any kind of protein as fat and this tends to cause dehydration. They are not a swap for real food, but a supplement, providng a convenient source of fast acting protein.

Consuming proteins in excess amounts also puts a person at higher risks of calcium deficiency and osteoporosis. This happens because when protein is digested; acids are released into the bloodstream and calcium is used to neutralise these acids in the body. 

What are the types of whey protein?

1. Concentrate
This form of whey protein has about 70-80% protein. It is rich in fat and lactose as well. It is known to be the tastiest among the varieties of whey protein. 

2. Isolate
The protein component in isolate whey protein can be up to 90% or even higher. Lactose and fat are present in smaller percentages. It also contains less beneficial nutrients than whey protein concentrate. 

3. Hydrolysate
Whey in a pre-digested form is called hydrolysate or hydrolysed whey. It is the best whey when it comes to fast absorption. Hydrolysed whey leads to a 28-43% increase in insulin levels, higher than the isolate form of whey. 

In Summary

Whey protein is great for athletes, weight trainers, people who don’t consume enough protein from food, or anyone who wants less body fat and more muscle mass and strength. Protein is the best nutrient when it comes to gaining muscle, and losing fat, and one of the best, and most convenient ways of getting protein is through whey.

Ideally, if you are looking to increase your protein intake from your diet, then whey protein offers a great, relatively cheap, well rersearched form of protein, that has great flexibility to combine into your own smoothies and recipes.
We have our own range of Whey protein that includes whey isolate and comes in three no-nonsense flavours you can check this out here 

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Fitness Nutrition

4 Best Supplements for CrossFit

You’ve started CrossFit, and see others ripping through WOD’s in half the time you can do it. Perhaps they’ve found an elusive supplement that you weren’t aware of, and if you had access to this same thing, then you’d be as quick or as strong too…

In reality, its likely they have been doing CF for a number of years, and have actually been where you are, as the newbie, starting out, and just getting to grips with WOD’s. Years of solid work has built the physical capacity, and the foundation for their improvements. 

Turning up, putting in the effort, and following your coaches advice, is the best way to start. Getting your diet right is a great step to improvement too. Getting these fundamental things right first, is where everybody should start. As for supplements, the clue is in the name, they are supplementary to your diet, and not the starting point for a good diet, or fitness level. There is certainly no magic pill, although there are certainly supplements to avoid, and ones that have solid research behind them, so let’s get into the good ones:

1. Whey protein and/or vegan protein

There is a lot of evidence that a high protein diet is beneficial for building muscle, gaining strength and losing weight versus a low, or moderate protein diet. Not only does protein aid recovery allowing you to train harder in subsequent sessions, it also stimulates muscle growth, which helps in muscle and strength gains.

It is easily digested, and absorbed quickly compared to many sources of protein, and can work out as cost effective, at 20g – 25g per serving. The high quantity of amino acids, available in whey protein, and particularly leucine, help to prevent the breakdown of muscle tissue and promote fat loss.

Chocolate, Banana and peanut butter protein shalke recipeActivits performance whey protein (with whey isolate) – Learn More

Look out for manufacturers packaging though, with the addition of unnecessary ingredients, or a huge scoop size to inflate the amount of protein per serving. Protein per 100g is a good test of the amount included rather than the serving size. If the protein is 80g per 100g then its 80% protein. If you are seeing 60 – 70% then you should be looking for why that is the case.

There are a multitude of vegan protein options available now too, and you may prefer a plant based protein for ethical, dietary or other reasons. Vegan protein, is vastly improved from the early options, which while offering plant based protein, were often really quite unpleasant to drink! There is less research on the benefits of vegan protein, although that is changing, and there are definitely good reasons to try a vegan protein. As with the advice on whey protein though, still keep in mind, checking the label, and looking for what’s included before making your purchase. 

Ultimately for most people, whey or vegan protein is about convenience. They can be added to smoothies, overnight oats, and other recipes, or just taken straight from a shaker with water, milk or your choice of alternative milk. They help to add extra protein to your diet, without much extra fat or sugar, and are a great addition to the whole foods you eat. Backed by plenty of research, they are a staple for many people involved in all types of sport, and for good reason, just make sure you read the packaging!

2. Creatine

Creatine monohydrate is one of the most studied and researched supplements, and is best taken as monohydrate (do not bother with more expensive versions, promising more, it is monohydrate which has the data to back up its use). It has been shown to have many benefits, so lets get into what they are.

Creatine has been shown to have particular benefit for athletes involved in activities that require short bursts of speed, or increased muscle strength, and might allow an athlete to do more work during reps, or sprints, which could lead to greater gains in performance. 

A detailed study in 2017, published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, concluded that creatine ‘remains one of the few nutritional supplements for which research has consistently shown ergogenic benefits’. This means that it may enhance strength and power performance, so increased repetitions and power output, both fundamentally important for the CF, or the functional fitness athlete. 

Another benefit of creatine is in relation to age, because as we get older, we start to lose muscle mass. Combining creatine with a resistance training program could help to reduce muscle mass loss, maintain strength, and even improve mental activity. 

Some of the latest research advocates taking it after exercise, although others argue the timing is not as important as taking it continuously, with 3g – 5g per day being the optimum amount. Some people choose to have a loading phase where they take 20g for 5 days, but much advice now focuses on this not being necessary, and instead just taking the recommended daily amount.

3. A quality multivitamin

Probably the most widely taken of all supplements, and a multi billion pound industry, but with varying levels of quality, and differing results from research. It is likely that if your diet is good, with whole foods being eaten and a variety of fruit and vegetables, then you may have no need for a multi vitamin. That said, many people do have poor diets, and others who train hard regularly, want the ease of a multivitamin to supplement their diet.

Particular people can benefit from taking additional vitamins, such as vegans and vegetarians, who might benefit from more vitamin B12, which is primarily found in animal foods, and some vegans (but by no means all) may also lack calcium, zinc, iron and vitamin D. Older people may benefit from more vitamin B12, vitamin D, and calcium too. 

Vitamin capsules and tablets, can absorb very differently, and often the percentage of vitamin absorbed, is much lower than stated on the pack too, so as with whey protein, actually taking the time to assess the product, and read the label, is always the best policy. 

There are good quality multi vitamins available, and we should know…

IgniteRX Vegan

Activits IgniteRX Crossfit Multivitamin – Learn More

Activits IgniteRX Vegan Crossfit Multivitamin – Learn More

4. Caffeine

The International Society of Sports Nutrition (ISSN), evaluated available literature on caffeine, and came up with a number of conclusions which are worth reading when considering using caffeine to boost performance:

  • Supplementation with caffeine has been shown to enhance various aspects of exercise performance in most studies. 
  • Aerobic endurance appears to be the form of exercise with most consistent benefits from caffeine use, although there are variations between individuals
  • The dose required to consistently improve exercise performance is 3-6 mg / kg of body mass. Minimal effective dose may be as low as 2mg / kg
  • The most commonly used timing is 60 mins pre workout. The timing though does depend on the form of caffeine that is taken
  • Caffeine appears to improve physical performance in both trained and untrained individuals
  • Caffeine does show some positive effects for cognitive function, including attention and vigilance
  • Energy drinks and pre workout supplements containing caffeine have been shown to enhance both anaerobic and aerobic performance

Can a weight vest make you stronger

In short, there appears to be a clear link between caffeine and performance, although people do have different levels of tolerance to caffeine, and a pre workout with 200mg of caffeine, may be barely noticed by some people, but send others into overdrive! Test your tolerance first, before diving in, use sporadically, and reset your caffeine tolerance by going without, or reducing the quantity you take for a few weeks.

Supplements to avoid

We’ve mentioned some products that are worth considering, but what about the ones to avoid.

  1. Fat burners

Often packed with ingredients you have never heard of, and with no research backing up claims, weight loss is best done with a combination of diet and exercise, and avoiding these so called fat burners.

  1. BCAA’s

You are very probably already getting enough BCAA’s, especially if using protein powder, or on a higher protein diet. There is no conclusive research available that proves they offer a benefit. Save your money!

  1. Products you have never heard of

If it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. It could be an invented name by a manufacturer. Do your research, and avoid…

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Fitness Nutrition

Chocolate Banana Overnight Oats Recipe

You’re going to love this Chocolate, banana overnight oats recipe because it is made with a few simple ingredients but packs a real punch, tastes great and by using our Activits Nutrition chocolate whey protein you’ll get a good hit of protein and BCAA’s first thing to start your day.

Ingredients

– 1 x scoop of Activits chocolate whey protein 
– 200 Milk of your choice. We recommend Oatly – Oat Milk.
– 40g Oats
– Half a banana
– Optional Extra – Fresh raspberries. 

 

Method

– Add oats, milk and Activits whey protein to a bowl or container and mix together slowly, then add the banana and fresh raspberries on top.
– Leave overnight in fridge and wake up to a tasty breakfast of champions.

 

Bonus Tip

– Have your overnight oats at breakfast along with 1 x 15ml shot of Activits IgniteRX liquid multivitamin and or Activits Fusion RX Joint support formula  to nutritionally set yourself up for the day. 

 

 

 


 

Activits Whey Protein Available Now
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Fitness Nutrition

7 Benefits of Whey Protein Isolate

What is Whey Protein Isolate?

One of the most commonly used sources of protein is whey which comes from dairy and this can be split into two most commonly used types concentrate and isolate. When milk products like cheese or yogurt are processed the liquid that remains is called whey and it is this liquid that contains the fast digesting protein ‘whey protein’ we see in all our protein supplements and the slower digesting casein protein. Both are great sources of protein but Whey protein is better at increasing the production of new protein in your muscles. Both whey isolate and concentrate are produced differently giving them both distinctive nutritional breakdowns and it is this difference in production that changes how the protein works, tastes and the amount of protein by weight.

Whey Isolate has more 90% more protein by weight than concentrate due to it’s low carbohydrate and fat content it also has lower lactose content. This type of whey protein lacks the taste of the concentrate due to the lower amounts of carbohydrates, lactose and fat and this is typically why a blend of the two creates the best of both worlds, high protein and great taste.

What are the benefits of Whey protein isolate?

Promote Lean Muscle Growth
This one goes without saying but the higher protein content in whey protein isolate helps you to develop lean muscle growth faster than it’s counterpart due to the higher protein amount per serving.

Reduce Fat Cells
A high protein diet has benefits outside of muscle growth one of those being, reduce in fat cells and weight loss when combined with a regular exercise routine. Whey protein also has the effect of making you feel fuller for longer meaning you won’t feel the urge to snack so much.

Support low blood pressure
Whey protein contains peptides which have been shown to have a positive effect in lowering blood pressure.

Essential Amino acids
Whey protein isolate is a complete protein and contains all the necessary essential amino acids that your body will need post workout to repair your muscles.

Lower in carbohydrates and fat
Due to whey isolates production process this type of whey protein has far less of anything other than protein in it so you get the protein you need (up to 90% more by weight than concentrate) without the added carbs and fat.

Low in lactose
Whey isolate protein has less than 1% lactose in it compared with 3% in concentrate.

Easily digested and used by your body
Whey protein isolate is easily digested by your body and used quickly.

 

 


Whey Isolate protein makes up part of our protein blend found in our NEW high-performance whey protein

Strawberry Whey Protein

A great tasting, premium protein, with 24g of protein per serving*, to be used in your morning smoothie, post workout, or whenever you want an extra hit of easily digested protein

You can FIND OUT MORE here.

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Fitness Nutrition Recipe

Chocolate, Banana and Peanut Butter Protein Shake Recipe

You’re going to love this Chocolate, banana and peanut protein shake recipe because it tastes exactly like chocolate and peanut butter banana bread. This protein powder smoothie recipe is made with just a few simple ingredients but packs a real push, tastes great and by using our Activits Nutrition chocolate whey protein you’ll get a good hit of protein and BCAA’s.

Ingredients

– 1 x scoop of Activits chocolate whey protein 
– 200 – 250ml Milk of your choice. We recommend Oatly – Oat Milk.
– 1 x Banana
– 1 x Scoop of peanut butter

 

Method

– Add all ingredients to a nutri bullet or similar blender and blitz until your chosen consistency.

 

Bonus Tip

– Take your Chocolate, banana and peanut butter shake at breakfast along with 1 x 15ml shot of Activits IgniteRX liquid multivitamin and or Activits Fusion RX Joint support formula  to nutritionally set yourself up for the day. 

 

 

 


 

Activits Whey Protein Available Now
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Fitness Nutrition

What is post workout recovery?

What is post-workout recovery?

Do you struggle to sleep, find it hard to continually perform at your peak due to stiffness and soreness or find your immune systems suffers from intense training? You probably have an issue with your recovery routine. Post-workout our body will try and reverse the impact of stress from training, it is in this reversal that the body overcompensates recovery so that next time you can perform at higher levels and for longer. To get the most benefit from the bodies post-training recovery we want to recover fully from one workout before we train again. So the quicker we can recover the more frequently we can train, reducing the risk of injury and lower levels of performance.

Why is it important?

The quicker we recover, the more we can get out of our training and the more progress we make. By promoting certain mechanisms of recovery post-workout we can get back to a fresh, ready to train state quicker to maximise our workout schedule. Post-workout recovery also helps in reducing your chance for an injury by allowing the body to fully repair before training again.

 

Post-workout recovery routine

 

What are the benefits of post-workout recovery?

Increased mobility
Recovery helps to increase the maximum range of movement during your subsequent workouts and over time if you practiser some post-workout routines that involve stretching and or yoga you will see greatly improved range of movement. This help to improve the individual exercises you use when training due to a greater range of movement during that exercise.

Decreases pain and soreness
Your recovery routine will help you to reduce the pain, stiffness and sore muscles that you get from training and speed up the recovery process so you don’t have to put up with it for so long.

Improve your workout performance
Post-workout recovery helps you to increase your range of movement and get you back to the gym faster. This speed of recovery is crucial to improving your performance and making regular incremental gains in your strength, stamina and overall fitness, which allows you to continually push yourself.

Better sleep
We all know the importance of sleep but few of us do anything to improve our sleeping habits. An effective post-workout recovery routine will help you to address the common issue of overtraining. The problem with overtraining is it affects your sleep and one of the signs of this is being overly tired during the day but unable to sleep at night, by practising post-workout recovery you can put your body back in balance.

Improved immune function
Studies have shown that improving recovery strengthens your immune system and regulates hormonal in balances. A stronger immune system will help you ward off illness allowing you to continually train, there is nothing worse than getting ill and not being able to train.

Foam Roller

 

How can you improve your post-workout recovery?

Take care of your nutrition
For your body to be able to effectively recover and repair post-workout you need to get the right kind of and balanced nutrition. Protein is essential for the repair of damaged cells during training, carbohydrates work to restore your muscles glycogen stores, a balance of vitamins and minerals helps your cells to functions properly and optimally and staying hydrated helps in repairing and the growth of new cells.

Active recovery
Light intensity exercise post-workout can aid with your recovery as it helps to promote blood flow and clear out metabolites e.g lactate from our system that reduce muscle performance. Yoga is a great way to do light intensity exercise but also stretch to improve tissue quality.

Tissue Quality
Stretching and flexibility techniques help with your mobility and to stretch out your tight muscles post-workout. Sports massage and products like foam rollers can also help to loosen up your muscles and target certain areas. 

 


Activits IgniteRX and IgniteRX Vegan

IgniteRX multi-vitamin supplement with Vitamin D

In our IgniteRX a specially formulated liquid multi-vitamin for functional fitness athletes, weightlifters, cross fitters and powerlifters we have 28 important vitamins, minerals (including Vitamin B12), greens for health, ginseng and caffeine for the extra energy boost.

You can buy our IgniteRX here.

 

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Fitness Nutrition

What are the benefits of glucosamine supplements and how can it improve your workout recovery?

What is Glucosamine?

Crossfit, powerlifting, functional training and weightlifting all put pressure and stress on our joints especially as we get older and continue to train or increase the weight we are using this can exacerbate this even more. Supplements with glucosamine and chondroitin can our joint recover in the following ways.

Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound that is chemically classified as an amino sugar. It serves as the building block for a variety of molecules but is primarily recognised for developing and maintaining cartilage within your joints.

 

Joint Support for crossfit, weightlifting and powerlifting

 

What are the benefits of glucosamine?

Reduces inflammation
Glucosamine help your body to reduce post workout related pain, stiffness and swelling in your joints.

Improve joint function
Glucosamine can help to improve your joint movement and function, perfect for those more complex movements or heavier movements such as squats, deadlifts and snatch.

Reduces joint pain
Glucosamine can help to reduce the pain in joints and stiffness post training, this can help when you train regularly or want to train more regularly.

Supports healthy joints
Some recent studies indicate that taking glucosamine supplements may protect joint tissue by preventing the breakdown of cartilage, but more studies are needed to be conclusive.

Often used to treat bone and joint disorders
Glucosamine is used to treat disorders like arthritis.

How much glucosamine should you take?

You can take up to 1,500mg in one or multiple doses throughout the day as per the Web MD website

Our FusionRX joint support and recovery supplement has Glucosamine in it along with turmeric, green tea extract and select other nutrients, and vitamins, specially formulated to support your joints.

FusionRX Joint recovery

You can buy our FusionRX here.

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Fitness Nutrition

5 benefits of green tea including weight loss, workout performance and general health

What is Green Tea?

Green tea is a type of tea made from Camellia sinensis leaves and buds that have not undergone the same withering and oxidation process used to make oolong teas and black teas.

 

What are the benefits of Green Tea?

Enhances performance
Drinking Green tea before a workout or run can increase your endurance and enhance performance. The American Journal of Physiology found increases your exercise endurance by up to 24%.

Reduce Inflammation
Green tea is rich in polyphenols natural compounds that help to reduce inflammation. Great if you suffer from joint pain, injury or inflammation during or post workout.

Boost brain function
Green tea has a good amount of caffeine in it, not as much as coffee but enough to boost brain function without the jittery side effects. It also includes the amino-acid L-theanine which reduces anxiety, increases dopamine and alpha waves in the brain.

Increase fat burning
Green tea is one of the ingredients found in most fat burning supplements, this is because it raises metabolic rate and increases fat burning in your body.

Reduces your appetite
Green tea has been shown to reduce your appetite and increase energy. It also has 0 calories so can be a great way to hydrate and stop you from snacking as much.

Green Tea good for your workout

Other Benefits of green tea
– High in antioxidants
– Helps prevent type 2 diabetes
– Protects the brain against ageing
– Helps reduce bad breath
– May help against cardiovascular disease (more research needed)

 


Green Tea in Activits FusionRX

FusionRX Joint Support

In our FusionRX a specially formulated liquid joint support for functional fitness athletes, weightlifters, cross fitters and powerlifters we have a number of ingredients to maintain and support joint health (including Green tea), turmeric, glucosamine and condroitin.

You can buy our FusionRX here.

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Fitness Nutrition

How vitamin B12 helps the body, enhances your health and is crucial for your workout performance

What is Vitamin B12?

Vitamin B12 is a water soluble vitamin that the body can’t make on its own and your body absorbs what it needs and flushes the rest out. So you have to replenish your vitamin B12 daily.

What are the benefits of vitamin B12?

Essential for energy
Vitamin B12 helps you to metabolise proteins and fats and helps turn carbohydrates into sugar for use as energy. People with a B12 deficiency often feel tired and run down.

Enhances brain function
Vitamin B12 nervous system benefits extend to your brain and it is also crucial for maintaining memory, concentration and focus.

Improve mood
Vitamin B12 is key to creating serotonine and dopamine to boost your mood and help to reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. When combined with folate in your body it helps you to regulate stress. 

Improve sleep
Vitamin B12 boosts production of the sleep hormone melatonin, which is responsible for regulating your circadian rhythm.

Reduce Joint Pain
Vitamin B12 provides relief and decreases inflammation for conditions that cause joint pain and stiffness such as arthritis.

Other Benefits of Vitamin B12
– Helps with red blood cell production and anaemia prevention
– Slows down macular degeneration
– Supports bone health and prevent osteoarthritis (more research needed)
– Reduces brain neurone loss
– Increases heart health
– Supports healthy hair, skin and nails

Vitamin B12 Deficiency

An estimated 6% of the population has a B12 deficiency while a further 20% have low levels or borderline deficiency. It can occur in two ways either you can’t absorb B12 from your food intake or you don’t get enough of it in your diet as the body doesn’t make it you have to get all you need from food and supplementation.

The most at risk from a vitamin B12 deficiency are those with diseases like Crohn’s or Celiac’s, older adults over 60, those on a strict Vegan diet.

Sources of Vitamin B12

– Meat
– Fish
– Dairy
– Eggs
– Seafood
– Liver
– Plant Milks (for Vegan’s)
– Soy products (for Vegan’s)
– Supplements


Vitamin B12 in Activits IgniteRX and IgniteRX Vegan

IgniteRX multi-vitamin supplement with Vitamin D

In our IgniteRX a specially formulated liquid multi-vitamin for functional fitness athletes, weightlifters, cross fitters and powerlifters we have 28 important vitamins, minerals (including Vitamin B12), greens for health, ginseng and caffeine for the extra energy boost.

You can buy our IgniteRX here.

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Fitness Nutrition

What is Selenium and why is it important for your health and workout performance?

What is Selenium?

Selenium is an essential mineral, meaning it must be obtained through your diet and it plays a major role in many bodily functions including your metabolism, immune system and thyroid function.

What are the benefits of selenium?

Selenium is a powerful antioxidant
Antioxidants like selenium help reduce oxidative stress by neutralising the number of excess free radicals, protecting cells from damage.

Important for thyroid health
Selenium is important for the proper functioning of your thyroid gland. With your thyroid tissue containing more Selenium than any other organ.

Important for brain health
Selenium has been shown to improve cognitive health, helping with brain development and increasing your mood.

Could help to reduce your BMI
A recent study published in ‘Nutrients’ did a study of 3214 subjects showed that the subjects with a higher dietary selenium intake had lower BMI. Further research is needed however on seleniums impact on body fat composition.

Other Benefits of Selenium
– Can help with DNA synthesis
– Protects against oxidative damage
– Can help with asthma (more research needed)
– Can help against cancer (more research needed)

Sources of selenium

– Oysters
– Brazil Nuts
– Halibut
– Eggs
– Sardines
– Tuna
– Sunflower seeds
– Shitake mushroom
– Supplements


Selenium in Activits IgniteRX

IgniteRX multi-vitamin supplement with Vitamin D

In our IgniteRX a specially formulated liquid multi-vitamin for functional fitness athletes, weightlifters, cross fitters and powerlifters we have 28 important vitamins, minerals (including selenium), greens for health, ginseng and caffeine for the extra energy boost.

You can buy our IgniteRX here.

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Fitness Nutrition

Why Collagen is important for your joints?

We include 5000mg of hydrolysed collagen in Fusion RX, our joint formula, designed to keep your joints in their best working order, to help you through your tough workouts. You may have seen it in products, or as supplements for skin too – so what is it ?

Collagen is a protein, and has important roles in providing structure to your skin and being one of the important building blocks of bones, muscles, tendons and ligaments. It is one of the main proteins in cartilage too.

Of the studies that have been done on collagen, a 2019 study on active males showed that collagen supplementation and strength training increased muscle mass more than a placebo. It is also thought that collagen can reduce joint pain, and also help strengthen joints, a key reason why it now being used to aid joint health.

We use hydrolysed collagen, as that is collagen that has been broken down into smaller, easy to process particles, and then as we deliver this in a liquid form, the body absorbs a greater proportion of this.

Reducing joint pain and safe guarding your joints, is something all us active people want to do. Its why we created Fusion RX, so you can get the best dose of ingredients, to keep you as active as you want to be, even as you age.

 

Benefits of Collagen

 

1. Reduce joint pain

Collagen is an important component of cartilage which supports joints. Getting older, when you exercise frequently or an athlete breaks down this tissue more rapidly which can lead to pain. Studies have shown that using collagen supplements can reduce joint pain.

 

2. Increase muscle mass

Collagen is an important part of your muscles and one reason you see muscle mass decreasing as you get older is that collagen decreases. Researchers found that when a post workout collagen supplement was taken they built more muscle than those that exercised a received a placebo. (Study published on the British Journal of Nutrition Website).

 

3. May enhance recovery

The regeneration of muscle fibres and producing scar tissue are crucial to post workout recovery and both of these processes require collagen to effectively work but more research is needed on this to be conclusive.

 

4. Reduce Injuries

Studies have shown that collagen supplementation increases the diameter of tendons in the joints with one study in particular looking at athletes and their ankles. These athletes were given collagen supplements or a placebo for six months whilst they trained and competed. Those that took the supplement had significantly lower rates of ankle injuries (Study published on the British Journal of Nutrition Website).

 

Other Benefits of Collagen

Research isn’t as strong on the following benefits of Collagen but there are very promising results on these so far.

Can help with the circulatory system

Improve bone health

FusionRX Joint recovery

Our FusionRX joint support and recovery supplement has collagen in it along with glucosamine, green tea extract, turmeric and select other nutrients, and vitamins, specially formulated for functional fitness recovery.

You can buy our FusionRX here.

 

Categories
Fitness Nutrition

The 3 main things to do to maintain muscle mass

While everyone can expect to lose muscle mass as we age, it is also possible to grow muscle at any age. There are no short cuts available, and to maintain or grow new muscle requires pushing and pulling heavy things. In short, some resistance exercise.

Why do it though ?


That one is easy. Loss of muscle mass contributes to poor health, fatigue, and then further down the line, as we age, disability, frailty, and even death. If you do manage to maintain muscle mass though, your chance of dying from a chronic disease is massively reduced, and it has been proven that only one hour a week of resistance exercise can be beneficial.

While building muscle mass is massively complex, and there is an unlimited amount of information available online, it can be condensed into 3 simple points:

1.     Diet, particularly with respect to protein intake

Ascent Protein


2.     Resistance exercise

 

Resistance Exercises


3.     Dietary supplements to enhance muscle mass and muscle protein synthesis

 

Nutritional Supplements

It turns out then that making sure you have enough quality protein, doing some weight training, and using the right kind of supplements can help you preserve muscle mass, which can have massive pay offs later in life. A really simple formula worth investing in if ever there was one!

 


 

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Fitness Nutrition

The Benefits of a High Protein Diet

There is a lot of evidence that a high protein diet is beneficial for building muscle, gaining strength and losing weight v a low or moderate protein diet. Not only does protein aid recovery allowing you to train harder in subsequent sessions, it also stimulates muscle growth, which helps in muscle and strength gains.

For losing weight, protein digests slowly, and helps to preserve muscle while you lose weight, while also burning more calories, making fat loss faster. We often hear the comment: won’t eating more protein make me bulky?

The answer to that is no. You can’t gain weight by burning more energy than you consume, so unless your total calories consumed exceed what you are burning, then you won’t gain weight. This is the same for any diet, so a high protein diet will not suddenly have you walking around like a body builder…


Lean muscle growth

What about protein before bed. Will that make me fat ?

Again this is a simple answer of no. As long as you are not taking in more calories than you burn in a day, then meal timing won’t contribute to gaining fat. Taking in a slow digesting protein before bed can actually be a good way to give a supply of amino acids to your muscles for growth and repair while you sleep. Greek yoghurt, cottage cheese and casein protein are all good choices before bed.


 

Activits Whey Protein Available Now
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Fitness Nutrition

Why Turmeric is good for your post workout recovery?

What is Turmeric?

Turmeric, sometimes called Indian saffron or the golden spice, is a tall plant that grows in Asia and Central America. Curcumin is the active ingredient in turmeric that is used to treat inflamation and help ease chronic pain.

What are the benefits of turmeric?

Anti-inflammatory properties
After a heavy workout, sometimes your muscles can be damaged, becoming sore and inflamed. Turmeric has been found to reduce muscle damage, thus decreasing the chance of inflammation occurring in your muscles.

Increased antioxident capacity
Curcumin is a potent antioxidant that can neutralize free radicals due to its chemical structure. In addition, curcumin boosts the activity of your body’s own antioxidant enzymes.

Boosts Brain BDNF
BDNF or Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor is a type of growth hormone that functions in your brain. It works as a fertilizer aiding neuro-plasticity, improving memory and creating new mental pathways. All helping you achieve those some of the more complex functional workout flows!

Pain Relief
Studies seem to support turmeric for pain relief, with one study noting that it seemed to work as well as ibuprofen (Advil) in people with arthritis in their knees.

Other Benefits of Turmeric
Research isn’t as strong on the following benefits yet but very promising results on these so far.
– Can help with skin irritations.
– Increased athletic performance.
– Lower the risk of heart disease.
– helps against age related diseases.

Adding Turmeric into your diet

– Adding turmeric into spice mixtures such as curry
– Making a homemade dressing using part oil, part vinegar, and seasonings including turmeric
– Turmeric Latte
– Supplements Like Activits FusionRX Joint recovery.

FusionRX Joint recovery

Our FusionRX joint support and recovery supplement has Tumeric in it along with glucosamine, green tea extract and select other nutrients, and vitamins, specially formulated for functional fitness recovery.

You can buy our FusionRX here.

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Fitness Nutrition

Why are amino acids important for building lean muscle and your post workout recovery?

What are amino acids?

Amino acids are widely known as the building blocks of proteins but they also play many other important roles in your body including: Improved muscles growth, Increased endurance, greater fat burn, improved recovery, and reduced muscle soreness.

Your body needs 20 amino acids all are important with only 9 being essential. These 9 cannot be made by your body and are obtained through diet or supplements. The 9 are histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and valine.

What are the benefits of amino acids?

Improved Muscle Growth
The amino acid Leucine has been shown to regulate and improve muscle protein synthesis after exercise.

Greater fat burn
Amino acids change the way our bodies use carbs and fat. Aminos have been shown to protect the bodies glycogen supply, burning fat instead.

Increased endurance
For athletes that rely on short burst of power as in crossfit glycogen depletion can be a major problem. A 2011 study found that aminos protected glycogen stores so well the participants took 17.2 times longer to hit the wall.

Improved Recovery
Aminos increase muscle protein synthesis meaning you can recover quicker and get back to working out sooner.

Increased Mental Focus
Amino acid supplements have been shown to improve your short term memory and processing abilities. Perfect when you’re competing in an all day competition.

What are the best sources of amino acids?

As your body can’t make the 9 essential amino acids here are some dietary sources.

Meat
Seafood
Eggs
Buckwheat
Dairy
Quinoa
Eggs
Soy
Supplements

Activits IgniteRX

IgniteRX multi-vitamin supplement with Vitamin D

In our IgniteRX a specially formulated liquid multi-vitamin for functional fitness athletes, weightlifters, cross fitters and powerlifters we have added all 9 essential amino acids along with 28 other important vitamins, minerals, greens for health, ginseng and caffeine for the extra energy boost.

You can buy our IgniteRX here.

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Fitness Nutrition

Why Vitamin D is important for enhancing your fitness and adding to your workout nutrition

Vitamin D is so important to us as humans that we have evolved to be able to get it from the sun, but with reduced sun exposure and more people working longer hours inside without regular breaks more and more people are becoming Vitamin D deficient.

What is vitamin D?

Vitamin D is the only vitamin we can make by standing in the sun. We can also eat it in fish, beef liver and mushrooms. Most milk, cereal, and orange juice that is fortified with vitamin D. Vitamin D is fat-soluble and not a vitamin but a prohormone or a precursor to a hormone.

Vitamin D has multiple roles in the body including, promoting healthy teeth and bones, supporting immune and nervous system health, supporting cardiovascular health, healthy cell growth, regulating insulin levels. This leads to some of the benefits of Vitamin D – Increased testosterone, better cognition, improved bone health, higher immunity, lower risk of depression and slower rates of aging.

What are the benefits of vitamin D?

Stronger healthier bones.
Our bodies need vitamin D to extract calcium properly from the food we eat, but vitamin D deficiency means we cannot absorb enough calcium. It can also slow down bone loss, warding off osteoporosis and keeping you stronger for longer. Vitamin D deficiency in children can cause rickets which leads to a bow-legged appearance due to the softening of bones from lack of calcium absorption. In adults, it can lead to bone softening and muscular weakness.

Stronger muscles
Vitamin D impacts protein synthesis and regulates neuromuscular functioning with studies showing a lack of or low Vitamin D levels resulting in muscle wastage and reduced functioning. People with insufficient levels of Vitamin D can also suffer from fatty muscles due to fat infiltration into the muscle tissue which impacts strength and power and can impair physical functioning.

Vital for immune health
If you can’t get to the gym you can’t train so immune health is something that as gym fans we need to stay on top of. Vitamin D has been shown to reduce the risk of flu in this 2018 study. Further research is needed but the initial results are promising.

Improve Heart Health
A recent study in the European Journal of preventative cardiology found that Vitamin D helps to exercise ability and possibly reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Typically people with a higher VO2 max capacity can exercise longer and more vigorously and they found a correlation with an increase in Vitamin D and an increase with max V02.

What is vitamin D deficiency?

Vitamin D deficiency can occur for many reasons

Darker skin type
Darker skin and sunscreen reduce the body’s ability to absorb the UV rays from the sun which is essential for the skin to produce Vitamin D.

Where you live
People who live in northern latitude locations or polluted areas don’t get as much sunlight as their southern counterparts.

Work Conditions
People who work night shifts, long shifts or work from home without regular brake from the office to go outside don’t get much sunlight.

What are the symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency?

Getting sick often
Fatigue and Tiredness
Bone and Back pain
Impaired wound healing
Bone loss
Hair loss
Muscle pain

What are the best dietary sources of Vitamin D?

The best way to get Vitamin D is through sufficient sunlight, however, here are some dietary sources of Vitamin D which can help to increase your intake.

Egg Yolks
Fatty fish such as mackerel and salmon
Beef liver
Mushrooms
Cheese
Fortified Milk
Fortified Juices
Fortified Cereals

Activits IgniteRX

IgniteRX multi-vitamin supplement with Vitamin D

In our IgniteRX a specially formulated liquid multi-vitamin for functional fitness athletes, weightlifters, cross fitters and powerlifters we have added Vitamin D along with 28 other important vitamins, minerals, amino acids, greens, ginseng and caffeine for the extra energy boost.

You can buy our IgniteRX here.

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Fitness Nutrition

Why you should be using Liquid Vitamins

  1. Absorption

Your body absorbs liquids in a matter of minutes, as they don’t have to be broken down first like tablets. Better than that though, you receive a much higher percentage of the vitamins

  1. Convenience

Many people struggle with the size of many tablets or capsules, especially as they get increasingly large to fit more in. No such issues with liquids, where you can just take a convenient ‘shot’ 

  1. Dose

A liquid vitamin allows much more to be included than a tablet, which can only be a certain size. As well as better quantities of vitamins and minerals, it is possible to add other beneficial ingredients like amino acids, and greens 

  1. Flexibility

It is possible to adjust the quantity dose you are taking with liquids. If you want to take half the dose, this is much easier than breaking into a tablet

  1. Digestion

Some tablets do not fully break and disintegrate, and can aggravate sensitive stomachs

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Fitness Nutrition

Complete A-Z of the best nutritional supplements

Amino Acids

BCAA supplements are huge sellers (branched chain amino acids), because they generally contain the 3 amino acids most important for manufacture, maintenance and repair of muscle tissue. As BCAA’s help promote recovery and growth their use is widespread.

Beta alanine

Ever taken a pre workout and had an itchy or tingly sensation ? Blame beta alanine. Aside from your weird itchy face though, why is it often added to pre workouts ? Its because there is much research on its benefits for endurance, particularly exercise over 60 seconds long. Alongside creatine it is now one of the most documented ingredients. Oh and in case you’re wondering the itchy / tingly / flushed face is called paresthesia, and is harmless. It is more likely if you take something with beta alanine on an empty stomach, so if you’re not a fan of this feeling, try eating first.

Creatine

Simply put it’s the most cost effective supplement for muscle mass and strength gains. There is loads of positive research on creatine monohydrate, so if you’re looking to gain muscle then its worth a go.

Vitamin D

There has been a lot of talk around Vitamin D recently. It maintains strong bones, helps with muscle health, and has a host of other beneficial reasons to take it. Its known as the sunshine vitamin, and its produced when out in the sun. For those of us who go many, many months without a glimpse of the yellow sphere, supplementing could be a good option.

Endurance 

Pre workouts, carbohydrates and amino acids are regularly used to help endurance during sports or workouts

Fat Burner

The market for magic, fat burning capsules is enormous and growing all the time. So what’s the best fat burner available ? Easy. It’s diet and exercise. No question. Sorry. The magic pill just doesn’t exist. Fat burning products can help shed the last few pounds, but should in no way be used to replace good nutrition, and exercise. Caffeine is the most widely researched ingredient which has been shown to increase fat loss.

Glutamine

Research has shown Glutamine to have anti-catabolic properties, which is to say that it can help to reduce the breakdown of muscle. Widely used by bodybuilders for this reason.

HMB

Not a great deal of research, but some positive suggestions that it helps decrease muscle breakdown, and could be particularly useful when cutting calories but wanting to maintain muscle

Intra workout

A high carb drink to help you power you through workouts. Everyone has lacked energy in the gym at some point, and intra drinks can help you maintain energy levels.

Joint Support

Nothing to do with Bob Marley, Glucosamine and Chondroitin are the two main ingredients in most joint support supplements. They can help repair cartilage is the claim. Evidence at the moment is not huge.

Vitamin K

Associated with cardiovascular health as it’s associated with inhibiting arterial calcification and stiffening.

L- Carnitine

A fat burner, and performance enhancer in one, its been used for years, and can help with endurance.

Magnesium  

An important part of ZMA, and can aid with better sleep.

Nitric Oxide

NO may prove useful when using weights as it can increase blood flow in the body. If you’ve heard people talking about pumps (increased blood flow to your muscles), then NO is a supplement used for this.

Omega 3

An excellent all rounder, as many people don’t get enough from their diet. Omega 3 can help with fat loss, improved brain function, and inflammation amongst other things.

Protein 

Whey ? Casein ? Isolate ? There are million types of protein available now. What is known for sure, is that protein is needed for muscle growth and recovery. Whey protein is easily digested and the most widely used, and can be helpful to people involved in most sports. Casein is a slower digested process, and is often taken at night to feed your muscles as you sleep. Isolate is the form of protein with the highest percentage of pure protein, so is considering the premium whey protein supplement.

Quality supplements

Pay attention to your supplements. Read the ingredients. Look out for dubious products you have not heard of, and you can find no information on.

RTD

Ready to drink supplements are becoming more popular and have appeared in many supermarkets now offering a quick fix of protein in an easy to drink bottle.

Supplements

Reading this article could leave you a bit confused, so if you want any advice on specific supplements then get in touch with us

Testosterone booster

Herbal ingredients aimed at boosting testosterone. ZMA was shown to increase testosterone in a study (see ZMA). Scientific research is not wide, so if looking for your first supplements then stick with the basics.

Ubiquitous 

Not a supplement, but a nice word to shove in this guide. Could be used to describe sports nutrition products as you can now see them everywhere. They aren’t just for athletes, or the guy with the stripey trousers and oversized arms in your gym.

Vitamins

Available everywhere, but did you know many tablets and capsules offer really poor absorption, so your body uses much less than you think ? Our liquid multi vitamin offers better absorption, with a greater quantity of ingredients in a convenient shot

Weight Gainer

Usually a high carb, high protein mix, with serious calories to help you put on a few pounds. Best used in conjunction with a gym!

Xylophone

A musical instrument. Not a supplement. Don’t ingest.

Yohimibe

A very popular ingredient in fat burners in the US, but not widely available in the UK as there are stipulations surrounding selling it.

ZMA

Its zinc, magnesium and vitamin B6. Used at night to aid sleep quality, which in turn helps muscle recovery after tough workouts.