Supplements aren’t cheap. Picking the right type of supplements to use whilst on a budget can often be a lengthy and dizzying process in which you have to start weighing up the pros and cons of each supplement, along with careful shopping to find the best deals and most cost effective brands. But you can still build a ton of lean muscle without forking out a small fortune. Here are 5 of the most important supplements to get if you’re on a budget.
Creatine is considered by most professionals in the industry as the most important and most validated supplement on the market. Creatine is effective in:
- Amplifying Lean Muscle Mass Gains and Power
- Boosting Aerobic Performance and Recovery
- Increasing Bone Mineral Density
- Improving Glucose Metabolism
- Enhancing Brain Performance
- Reducing Oxidative Stress
Besides supplementation, there’s no real effective way of getting enough creatine for it to work its performance enhancing magic unless you’re happy to drink litres of milk or eat kilos of meat. As such, creatine is by far the best supplement to get if you were on a tight budget. Better yet, it’s fairly cheap, so it won’t break the bank. Go for a high quality creatine monohydrate such as Creapure.
- Best Creatine Supplement to Buy – Elemental Nutrition Creapure
- Other Alternatives – ON Micronized Creatine and Reflex Creapure Creatine
Protein is the building block of muscle and so is vital to support lean muscle growth. It’s also a great supplement to keep you leaner and your appetite in check, making it easier to stay away from nutrient poor junk foods. Most people can get the majority of their protein needs from food, and so it’s less important as a supplement than creatine. However, if you train often and require more protein or simply want something more convenient, a protein shake is one of the best supplements you can get. It’s also relatively cheap and can make a lot of impact without breaking the bank. Go for a blended whey protein or a whey/casein blend.
- Best Protein Supplement to Buy – Pure Supps 100% Whey
- Other Alternatives – ON Gold Standard 100% Whey or Max’s Super Whey
3. Multivitamin & Fish Oil
These two supplement categories have been lumped together as they are both sources of essential compounds. Multivitamins generally contain 24 of the essential vitamins and minerals that our body needs to optimal health and function. Fish oil and krill oil can help provide essential fatty acids which our body does not produce. As with protein powders, we can get all of our vitamin, mineral and essential fatty acids from foods alone. Having said that though, those on lower incomes and/or with particular nutrient poor diets may be at higher risk of deficiency, making a multi or fish oil supplement incredibly handy. They’re also relatively cheap and can make a world of difference.
- Best Multivitamin & Fish Oil to Buy – Nature’s Own Men’s & Womens Multivitamin and Fish or Krill Oil
- Other Alternatives – BSc Executive Stress Multivitamin, Swisse Men’s & Women’s Ultivite and Swisse Odourless Fish Oil
4. Pre Workout
The pre workout category is one of the best selling categories behind protein and one of the most well researched behind protein and creatine. Performance enhancement via the use of natural compounds is one of the biggest topic research areas in the sports science arena. While fat burner supplements are just as popular, if not more so, their effect is often not as high or as effective as many of the pre workouts. As our lives become more hectic and work schedules increase, getting the motivation to work out and work out well can be hard. A pre workout is the perfect answer to help knock out a good workout and also keep you alert during the day and avoid negative food decisions.
- Best Pre Workout to Buy – Cellucor C4 Extreme
- Other Alternatives – Pro Supps Mr Hyde & Nutrex Outlift
5. Nootropic Supplements
Nootropics is just a fancy word for any drug, supplement or ingredient which is often used to help support and improve cognitive and mental function. There are so many ingredients that help support brain health. Interestingly enough, you’ll find a lot of these ingredients in both fat burners, pre workouts and sleep support supplements. All three have their place for supporting workout capacity as well as overall health. While they rank last in this list of the best supplements to get on a budget, they still rank extremely high in the grand scheme of things. Nootropic supplements are still growing in popularity, so there aren’t that many around, but look out for ingredients such as carnitine, choline and tyrosine just to name a few.
- Best Nootropic Supplement to Buy – Elemental Nutrition Pre Workout
- Other Alternatives – Gen-Tec Acetyl L-Carnitine
Supplements on a Budget
It can be hard prioritising what to get when it comes to your supplement needs, especially when you’re on a tight budget. The fact that there are thousands of supplements in multiple categories makes it even more confusing. Generally speaking though, if you’ve got a very limited budget, focus on creatine and protein. Most of your other needs can be met through a nutrient dense diet and plenty of rest and sleep.