My Daily Supplements

As the new year has finally kicked off, I think almost everyone I know has some sort of resolution/plan to improve their health. It might also have to do with Spring Break and Summer looming over us, as it’s all we can think about  with all this cold weather!

I can’t say that I am a supplement expert, or that I have it down to a science. But I thought I would share what I take (on as much of a regular basis as I remember) and the benefits that they provide my health.

Disclaimer: All these products can (and were) purchased at the Vitamin Shoppe. I may be partial because I used to work there, but I also believe of all the box stores (Vitamin Shoppe, GNC, and Vitamin World) the Vitamin Shoppe has the best deals, and they train their employees to know about all their products, and strive to provide education daily to those employees.

Probiotic

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 12.41.40 PMAs far as probiotics go, I still have yet to figure out which is the best one to take. However, I tend to stick to the “middle of the road” options. This probiotic isn’t the cheapest, but it has 13 billion organisms, which is enough to convince me it’ll help my horrible digestive system. I don’t share this a lot, but I have a HORRIBLE digestive system. I’ve tried a few different things, short of giving up certain foods (gluten mainly) because I’m 12 and can’t stop eating toast or PB and J… And all my research says probiotics and enzymes (see next supplement) can help break down any food you eat, leading to a happy digestive system.

Digestive Enzyme

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 12.53.33 PMDigestive Enzymes are taken with each meal to help breakdown everything that you eat. Depending on what you require, there are different enzymes for you. This one that I take, helps breakdown carbohydrates, fats, proteins, fibers, and dairy. Yeah, my system is bad, so I need lots of help. To be fair I’m also crappy at sticking to a regime of taking supplements daily, so I have yet to see how much this really helps. That’s a goal for this year, to actually take them.

Greens Powder

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 12.57.08 PMThis is one of the things I throw in as often as possible. I don’t eat as many vegetables as I should, and it definitely shows. This powder, mixed into a smoothie, or protein, or even just mixed into apple juice gives all the nutrients of eating every green growing thing on this planet. Slightly expensive ($2 a day roughly), but worth it. Also helps get things moving…

Epiburn Pro

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 12.59.24 PMThis is a supplement that a lot of people won’t agree with, but if I’m being honest and telling you what I take, here you go. This is a fat-burning, appetite suppressing, caffeine pill. It’s a thermogenic, so it leaves you sweating, with freezing fingers and toes, raises your blood pressure… But it works. And I love that I can take one pill in the morning with a glass of water, and don’t have to drink coffee where my breath stinks and my teeth turn yellow every day. One pill is 100mg of caffeine – a little more than a cup of coffee. This is not for the faint of heart, or the caffeine sensitive.

Whey Protein

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 1.03.02 PMThis is the only product I don’t get at the Vitamin Shoppe, and that’s because they don’t sell it. I LOVE cellucor. And will likely switch over to their weight loss supplement instead of epiburn pro for my next bottle. I also get 25% off at cellucor.com from Christian Guzman. Whey protein usually upsets my stomach but it’s worth it for the protein benefits, and the flavor. My favorite from Cellucor: Cor-fetti. But every flavor I’ve tried is amazing. Bodybuilding.com also has 4 serving bags of each flavor so you can try flavors. I have a big jug of the Cor-Fetti, but little bags of Cinnamon Swirl, PB Marshmallow, and S’mores.

There are obviously thousands of other supplements out there, a lot that would probably help me (ie: multivitamin, vitamin B, etc). And I do take a multi-vitamin every once in a while, but I’m not consistent with a brand that I would tell you is my holy grail. I do like Optimum Nutrition’s women’s sport multi though, because It’s a small gel-cap, vs those ginormous tablets that are usual for multivitamins.

What supplements do you guys take? Any that you recommend?

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Supplement Review: Epiburn Pro

Epiburn Pro is USP labs newest “weight management” supplement, being released about a year after Oxyelite Pro was taking off the market because it contained DMAA which the FDA deemed unsafe. I checked multiple websites for prices/availability of Epiburn Pro, and not surprisingly, the Vitamin Shoppe had it in stock, and for the cheapest price. I love the Vitamin Shoppe (and not just because I used to work there) because it’s always a great price, and they almost always have what I need in stock, unless it’s a rare product.

So, what is Epiburn Pro? 

Ingredients:

Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 7.10.10 PM100mg of caffeine: Research shows that 100mg-200mg of caffeine provides optimal levels for turnover in the body, speeding up metabolism. Research shows that 400mg of caffeine provides the same effect as 200mg, so more is not necessarily better here. Epiburn Pro uses caffeine as sort of a “jump start” to get the body revved up, so to speak, so the other included ingredients can work better.

Withania Somnifera (root) extract: This is also Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 7.10.31 PMknown as ashwagandha root. Some studies have been done on this herb, and it’s ability to improve cardiovascular health as well as decrease anxiety. These studies have also seen a decrease in the weight of the people taking the supplement, even though they weren’t focused on their diet.

For you athletes out there, ashwagandha has been shown to improve sprint power output and velocity, as well as increase VO2max

Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 7.10.48 PMOlea Europaea (leaf) extract: also known as olive leaf extract. helps oxidize LDL cholesterol, lower total cholesterol, lower blood pressure, increase insulin sensitivity, and lower overall blood glucose levels. These are the same reasons that olive oil is good for you, but the leaf extract contains more of the compounds, and therefore has a more profound effect

Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 7.11.32 PMYohimbe (Pausinystalia Johimbe) (Bark) Extract: stimulates, burns fat, suppresses a
ppetite, AND is an aphrodisiac! It boosts lipolysis (the breakdown of fat), and increases the amount of free fatty acids in the blood during and after exercise. 

Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 7.11.47 PMColeus Forskohlii (Root) Extract: This herb has become very popular in the weight loss community recently. It’s been shown to help reduce BMI (body mass index), assist in regional fat loss (which I don’t know if I necessarily agree is possible, but we’ll move on).

Nelumbo Nucifera (Seed) Extract: This ingredient is a little weird. It’s been shown to trigger the “fight or flight” resScreen Shot 2014-08-07 at 7.12.11 PMponse in your body. This may been a good thing for right be
fore a workout, because it gets your body revved up. It also releases free fatty acids for use as energy. 

While most of the ingredients don’t have exact amounts given on the bottle, there is little research that has been done to determine the optimal amount of each. Therefore, we have to assume that USP Labs put an ample amount of each in this product.

A lot of people will compare this product to Oxyelite Pro, however it is a different type of product.

Epiburn Pro boasts the ability to both block fat uptake from the digestive system, as well as promote the release of fat from fat cells to be used as energy. The majority of the ingredients are meant for this purpose. Other than that, there is caffeine, and then ingredients that promote an increase in thermoregulation temperature, and ingredients that provide focused energy (unlike the jittery energy you might experience from too much caffeine).

Let’s get down to it:

What I think: I have taken Epiburn Pro for 6 straight days now. I quit drinking all other forms of caffeine, as suggested… So, no coffee, soda, tea, etc. I did have a decaf coffee one night, but other than that, I went cold turkey. I am used to drinking a solid 16oz cup of coffee a morning, and replacing that with Epiburn Pro seemed to keep the caffeine headaches at bay. The energy I have is much more focused and “useful” vs. the sometimes jittery caffeine energy I sometimes get, especially if I don’t eat anything.

The first day I didn’t notice much difference in energy or appetite, but after the 2nd day, I started having fewer cravings for food, and really only felt hungry when I was truly hungry, vs. just being bored. I have been eating smaller meals, and feeling fuller sooner as well. Now, this may all be mental, and just a placebo effect, but if it works, it works.

Update: I’ve been taking Epiburn Pro for a few weeks now. I am starting to feel a little tired throughout the day, but have still not upped my dose to 2 pills in the morning. I will begin taking 2 this week, on a day I’m not working (just in case). I still have no headaches or jitters, although I feel as though the affects might be decreasing, and I feel myself needing a higher dose.

Overall, I loved my Oxyelite, and this will never be that, but it is the best alternative I’ve found so far. It costs roughly $39 for a bottle of 90 pills, and at this time I take 1 pill a day, every morning 30 minutes before breakfast with a large glass of water. This means I am paying less per day than buying my usual coffee, so I’m also saving money which is awesome! Would I recommend this product to a friend? Yes. Do I think it’s a godsend product and everyone should try it? Maybe not, but I think I’m still comparing it to Oxyelite in my head.

Just for comparison, these are the other supplements I’ve tried as well:

Who SHOULDN’T take Epiburn Pro? Anyone who is caffine sensitive, or allergic to any of hte ingredients found in the product. Anyone who is on a blood pressure medication, a heart medication. Anyone who is pregnant or nursing. 

All information comes directly from personal experience, EpiBurn Pro bottle, or this blog post: https://blog.priceplow.com/supplement-news/epiburn-pro