Don’t waste money on nutritional supplements and multivitamins until you read this…Below is a link to the list of nutritional supplements that are endorsed by the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS). The AIS has done considerable research in the area and have come up with a list of supplements that they endorse and that can provide benefits to cyclists.
I refer our athletes to this list if they ask questions regarding nutritional supplements.
My personal verdict on nutritional supplements and multivitamins. Some are surrounded by unproven marketing hype and based on dubious findings and loose or biased scientific support. Can be expensive. And, any benefits to an active healthy cyclist that already has a balance diet are minimal at best and certainly in a lot of cases not worth the money.
I believe that there are no shortcuts to developing and improving fitness. The best way is through structured training and a healthy approach to diet. I can’t stress how much the nutritional industry prey on the unsuspecting cyclist that is looking to gain a mythical “snake oil” advantage or has a preconceived nutritional bias based on a nutritional urban myth.
I also believe that most cyclists eat relatively healthy and don’t fall into the percentage of population that are unfit and consume a large amount of junk food in their daily lives. This group of people may be more in need of nutrition supplements or a change in diet. And, should seek professional advice from a doctor or qualified nutritionist rather than rely on nutritional urban myths or marketing hype.
This being said I have had some people on my coaching programs that have suffered from iron deficiencies. When I see athletes not responding to training or are unusually tired I recommend that they see their doctor and get a blood test done. The results will tell definitively if the athlete is in need of a nutritional supplement. That way there is no guessing. I’m not a doctor, or a nutritionist, I am a coach and I leave nutritional advice to those that have been professionally trained in those areas.
My view on nutritional supplements is my personal view. You can make your own decision as to which nutritional supplements you choose to purchase and use.
AIS Supplement Group Classification
In the AIS Sports Supplement Program supplements are classified into four groups according to their effectiveness and safety.
- Group A – Strong scientific evidence for use in specific situations in sport using evidence-based protocols.
- Group B – Emerging scientific support, deserving of further research.
- Group C – Scientific evidence not supportive of benefit amongst athletes OR no research undertaken to guide an informed opinion.
- Group D – Banned or at high risk of contamination with substances that could lead to a positive doping test.
For a full list of AIS ranking of sports foods and supplement ingredients into the four groups according to scientific evidence and other practical considerations that determine whether a product is safe, permitted and effective in improving sports performance refer directly and frequently to there web site https://ais.gov.au/nutrition/supplements.