Lance Armstrong’s illegal doping controversy is giving all supplements a bad name

Lance Armstrong’s illegal doping controversy and marathon runner Claire Squires’ accidental death from a dangerous stimulant have left people questioning the safety of performance-enhancing supplements. Due to inadequate quality controls, some manufactures are able to release products without demonstrating they are safe and effective, leaving consumers vulnerable.

According to a 2010 Ipsos-Reid survey, 73% of Canadians regularly take natural health products, with 32% using at least one on a daily basis – but how much do we really know about what we are taking?

Despite recent events, not all supplements are “bad.” Here are some examples of popular, safe and natural performance-enhancing supplements that can be taken for health and fitness benefits:

– Multi-Vitamin/Minerals supplements help ensure the body’s stores have all the micronutrients needed for proper functioning. Vitamin D helps boost the immune system, energy levels, one’s ability to maintain healthy weight and mood. Calcium helps prevent osteoporosis, controls weight, helps combat cancer and reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and hypertension.

– Antioxidants work to fight off “free radicals” and decrease stress on the body. Green Tea helps boost mental focus and the immune system, controls cholesterol levels and aids in cancer prevention. Acai Berry is useful for weight loss, heart health, skin health, digestive health and has potent anti-viral properties. Dendrobium stimulates physical strength, energy, mental focus and decrease harmful free radical levels.

– Whey Protein speeds up the recovery from physical activities, power and strength-training when consumed immediately after training. Low in calories and carbs, the body uses the amino acids in whey protein to strengthen and heal muscles, boost the immune system, enhance blood circulation and prevent fatigue.

– Carbohydrate Powder replenishes depleted glycogen (sugar/carbohydrate) levels from exercise so muscles can recover quicker after training. They increase the absorption of protein by the body and shunt the amino acids to muscle tissue for quick and efficient muscle repair.

– Fiber helps athletes repair from training and become stronger by allowing nutrients to be more easily absorbed by the body. Soluble fiber dissolves in water, slowing the movement of food through the colon where as insoluble fiber absorbs water and eases defecation. The body needs a combination of the two to function properly.

Don Gauvreau is recognized as one of the best researchers and product formulators in the dietary supplement industry. He has earned the moniker, The Supplement Godfather because of his depth of knowledge and ability to continually develop and discover new and exciting dietary ingredients. Over the past 10 years, Don has had a hand in formulating and marketing hundreds of different products now on store shelves around the globe.

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Victoria Lifestyles Magazine

Victoria is home to a variety of people of all ages who enjoy diverse activities and interests. The mandate of Victoria Lifestyles Magazine is to cover a wide range of resident topics. Utilizing the talents of highly experienced writers and journalists, as well as local burgeoning talent eager share their ideas, our editorial will provoke thought and perhaps lively, intelligent debate from our community’s brightest minds.