Bodybuilders workout to increase their muscle mass. However Amateur and competitive bodybuilders take their nutrition seriously. As well as following a strict diet plan most of these athletes include proteins and nutritional supplements to help them achieve optimal results from their efforts. One item that is severely reduced in a bodybuilders diet is fat. However, bodybuilders often remove all fat from their diet including those fats that the body requires in order to function. A high-quality fish oil supplement will help most athletes to maintain their strict nutritional plan and still receive the essential fatty acids that their bodies need.
There are many potential benefits athletes may gain from omega-3 fatty acid supplements. These benefits include weight control, vitamin absorption, muscle repair, and the reduction of inflammation in their joints and bodies. Dietary restrictions that bodybuilders impose upon themselves often include extremely lean proteins and whole grains with very little fat and the essential fatty acids contained in fish and fish oil can provide the balance they lack because of their eating habits. Choosing the right amount of fish oil for inclusion in the bodybuilders diet has been the subject of much debate. The World Health Organization states that 300 mg to 500 mg is the preferred daily dose for healthy adults who eat a balanced diet. However, the American Heart Association recommends a daily dose of 1 to 3 g of fish oil per day.
Competitive bodybuilders spend as much as 12 weeks to reduce their body fat percentage well below normal levels and while doing this many of them suffer extreme mood swings. The University of South Australia published a report based on two groups of bodybuilders. One group supplemented their diet with 6 g of fish oil per day and each of the participants lost an average of 1.2% body fat compared to zero additional body fat loss from the control group. The test followed the traditional 12 week preparation schedule that competitive bodybuilders follow before competition.
In this study psychological performance, blood pressure, and injury status was also monitored. Those bodybuilders who were taking the omega-3 supplements measured significantly better in their psychological profiles, average blood pressure, and in recovery from injury. The researchers concluded that given the extreme dietary habits of competitive bodybuilders, fish oil provided a nutritional link to better health. In recent years two high-profile bodybuilders succumbed to cardiovascular events that might have been prevented with the use of a quality fish oil supplement.
Inflammatory response, blood pressure, and cholesterol related cardiovascular problems are all reduced when the proper amounts of the nutrients EPA and DHA our present. The addition of fish or a fish oil supplement will give an athlete the proper amounts of these essential fatty acids in order to perform at a high level. It will also allow for faster recovery from individual workouts and injuries. This allows bodybuilders to return to the gym faster and to put more stress on their muscles in order to receive maximum growth over time.
Appropriate levels of fish oil will provide a number of performance and health enhancing benefits for bodybuilding athletes. These benefits not only help their sport, but because of the great stress they place on their body, the additional essential fatty acids provide additional benefits that are lifelong. Improving their personal and competitive lives has long been the goal of many bodybuilders, fish oil and omega-3 fatty acid supplements can help provide them with these benefits.
As with all supplements athletes should consult their healthcare professionals and nutritional advisers in order to determine the proper dosages for their particular situation.