Not all supplements are bad for the body, say experts

Hyderabad Express spoke to a trainer, a body-builder, a nutritionist and a medical doctor to put into perspective what is best for our body.

Published: 06th December 2018 04:59 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th December 2018 08:54 AM   |  A+A-


Image used for representational purpose only

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: A fit body is a desire almost everyone has. While some strive to achieve it, some find shortcuts. Supplements that those hitting the gym actively take have a bad reputation unless the user knows full well about it. But of course, there are those of the same that aren’t as innocent as they seem. To get to the bottom of this, Hyderabad Express spoke to a trainer, a body-builder, a nutritionist and a medical doctor to put into perspective what is best for our body. What we realised that not all supplements are unnatural. See what we found...

Afzalpaasha Mohammad, Professional bodybuilder, Celebrity trainer

Bodybuilding for me started as a goal towards just fitness and went on to become an addiction. There is a common misconception that the only way to have a ripped body is to succumb to synthetic supplements. But all it takes is patience and being informed about your body. There are different body types and the workout and intake too should be done accordingly. It’s necessary to figure out what kind of body yours is. For any person looking to build their body, they need to have protein double their weight in grams per day- that is if you weigh 70 kgs, you need to have 140 gms of protein. Now that is not practically possible to have through just eggs chicken or your regular meals. Even generously planned meals in a day will barely give you 100 gms of protein to your body. This is where the protein supplements come in. While protein supplements are the best way to go, that too has types. There are mass gainers, isolate proteins and the most common whey protein. Isolate protein are the best for those working out because they can be digested fast and are perfect for post-workout intake. It would go directly to the muscles. Similarly, the slow digesting protein, Casein, is perfect for nights, because it digests slowly through the 8 hours that you sleep. And most muscle building happens in your body when you are asleep and your body needs the protein in moderated time then. Amino acids or BCAA too are common supplements which are barely complementary supplements to the protein. These amino acids which are usually present in the body too are needed to break down the extra proteins that we take. That is what leads to body-synthesis, or what we understand as body building. Besides these Glutamine is another supplement that helps bodybuilders recover from heavy workouts. Multivitamins and fish oil too are good fats that the body needs and it also keeps the heartrate in check.

Dr HariKishan Boorugu, Consultant Physician, Apollo Hospitals

From what I know, some people who seek to have a ripped body get the help of anabolic steroids to help in building muscle. Of course because of the reputation they have, all that is usually off the table. And the reason too is its risky nature. Anabolic steroids are used in medicinal prognosis but in this case it’s a cosmetic use, for the reason of vanity.  Having said that even the protein supplements that are celebrated might have adverse effects. Although it is uncommon, with the kind of lifestyles that the youngsters are leading, there might be undiagnosed conditions in the body that can turn this protein intake dangerous too. In most cases this intake goes unchecked. This may lead to disturbed levels of uric acid which can in turn lead to liver and kidney issues in the long term and joint pains in short term effects.

Sridevi Jasthi Holistic Nutritionist

I have had patients come to me with bodies full of acidity. This is usually the result of putting proteins in the body due to the popular assumptions associated with it in regard to body building. This leads to aches and pains which do not leave your body unless you make some changes. I eliminate a few things in their diet and regulate the protein intake and within a week they feel better. I always recommend food grade supplements or natural supplements like whey protein, soy protein or even hemp protein for those who need high intake of protein which is not possible to acquire from just food. Similarly, omega 3,6,9 fatty acids, and probiotics are necessary to keep up the balance and proportion of the body. However, over-supplementing with anything will eventually lead to body acting up. For instance over-intake of protein will lead to lactic acid production in excess, more than the body can break down and that leads to the joint pains.  Synthetic supplements on the other hand simply do not get absorbed and assimilated in the body which will only make them have to add something else to their diet to battle that. Any element that isn’t naturally produced in the body will only create toxicity in the body. Omega oils, protein, amino acids, and multivitamins are all produced in the body as well, so supplementing those into your body - in optimum amounts of course - will not affect one adversely. 

Kuldep Sethi, Director for 360 Degree Fitness, Celebrity Trainer

There are three different body types and no recommendation can be termed as “fit-for-all”. The types are Ectomorphic body - where the metabolism is so high that no matter how much you eat, you don’t gain weight. Endomorph - where eating a little leads to weight gain and fat deposits. The third kind is Mesomorph - who have a naturally well-built muscular body. Now the supplements too depend on what the individual is looking for. It depends on whether they are looking for a leaner body, a muscled body or just looking for strength. For someone who is into heavy muscle building I would suggest whey protein and amino acids all of which are present in the body naturally and are only adding to the level to match up to the workout. Those who are bodybuilders and who complete need to pack on muscle and the intake needs to be complementing that. Different training needs different intake. But the most common supplement and possibly the safest is whey protein. There’s nothing unnatural about it in fact every cell in your body is made of protein. There was a survey that mentioned that the protein intake of Indians has reduced and the intake of carbs has increased.  Earlier in our meals we had pulses, dairy, legumes and leafy vegetables all sources of great protein. Now due to the change of lifestyle and times, supplementing is a way to go. There are corporates too who try to push supplements and pills like fat loss pills, weight gain supplements and muscle gain supplements, which aren’t unsafe but they are all an individual choice. Even if one is going for the natural protein supplements, it needs to be done in an informed manner. The intake can’t be the same for someone visiting the gym for the first time and for a bodybuilder. Your body needs to adapt to the stress of workout and the nutrition changes. 

— Srividya Palaparthi
@PSrividya53/ Twitter

Stay up to date on all the latest Health news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp