Let me start out by saying supplements are not required to transform a skinny-fat body. Or any body type, for that matter.
In fact, you can get all of the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients you need to transform your body from organic and natural sources – food.
The problem is that it’s not always feasible to get all of the nutrients you need through food alone. So that’s why we use supplements.
Here’s the other thing…
When you’re training hard, your body requires more of certain micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) than normal people who sit in an office all day and go home and watch Netflix or the news (aka stagnant).
With that said, I’m going to take you through some important supplements that you should consider to help you transform your body from skinny-fat to lean and muscular.
My ‘Skinny-Fat Muscle Building Plan’ is a 3-part series.
This is Part 3, and I’m going to show you the types of supplements you should consider taking to build lean muscle and get into top shape.
**If haven’t read the first posts in this series, you can go back and read that here:
Skinny-Fat Part 1: The Workout
Skinny-Fat Part 2: The Meal Plan
Types of Supplements You Need
Before we get into the individual supplements, let’s first talk about the types of supplements you should look for.
I’ll also cover what supplements NOT to take!
The purpose of supplements is to cover any potential micronutrient deficiencies.
Here are some important notes about these supplements I’m going to share with you…
- They are natural vitamins and minerals
- Chances are, you’re already familiar with most or all of these
- There are no banned substances in the supplements I’m sharing with you
- No ‘filler’ ingredients
- They’re not fancy, trendy, or expensive
Most importantly, the supplements I’m going to share cater to the micronutrient deficiencies that many skinny-fat people are prone to having.
Supplements for Skinny-Fat Body Transformation
Alright, let’s get to the meat and potatoes. Here’s how this will flow…
- Name of the supplement
- Why it’s important for your specific fitness goals
- How to use it and/or the best times to take it
- I’ll also provide a link where to purchase
The supplements are not listed in any particular order. You can decide what you need to take by reading about each.
NOTE: If you decide to purchase from the links I provide, The Muscle Program does earn affiliate rewards. This is how The Muscle Program is supported, and I appreciate that.
Furthermore, the supplements I’m recommending are also supplements that I either currently take or have substantial experience with.
ZMA is a specific blend of zinc, magnesium, and vitamin B6. I actually have a full product review for the original ZMA supplement you can read about here.
What does ZMA do?
It promotes restful sleep, which in turn helps your body recover better from workouts to grow new muscle tissue. It also helps you maintain healthy hormone production, specifically testosterone and growth hormone.
Holding body fat while having a difficult time gaining muscle is often a sign of having low testosterone and growth hormone levels. So it’s crucial to ensure you’re getting the right nutrients to support healthy levels of these hormones.
Obese men are more likely to have low testosterone. Men with very low testosterone are also more likely to become obese. Fat cells metabolize testosterone to estrogen, lowering testosterone levels.‘Low Testosterone and Your Health’ Published on WebMD, reviewed by Sabrina Felson, MD on February 11, 2019 webmd.com
Now, ZMA may sound like a fancy supplement but it’s actually one of the least expensive supplements you can take. And it’s also one of the most effective.
When to take ZMA:
- At night about an hour before you go to bed (be sure to read the label; it should mention avoiding anything with calcium during this time)
Creatine remains one of the most popular bodybuilding supplements. Its purpose is to help you build bigger muscles.
At a glance, that might sound counterproductive to fat loss. But there’s more…
Creatine works by increase ATP (adenosine triphosphate). ATP is the energy source for your muscles. By increasing ATP, you also increase your workout intensity and ability to train both longer, and harder.
Being ‘skinny-fat’ isn’t so much of an issue of being overweight – the real problem is that you’re lacking lean muscle.
Remember, as you learned in both Part 1 and Part 2 of this skinny-fat blog post series, having more lean muscle is going to help your body naturally burn fat more efficiently.
So there’s a strong case for supplementing with creatine monohydrate.
How and when to take creatine:
- 5 grams before you workout
- 5 grams immediately after your workout
One of the things that skinny-fat people have trouble with is boosting their metabolism. This can result in tiredness, weakness, and feeling unmotivated.
Taking extra vitamin B12 can help combat those symptoms.
B12 also helps your body produce red blood cells, which delivers more oxygen to your muscles, per BobyLogicMD’s article ‘These Are the 10 Most Important Vitamins for Muscles.’
So B12 has both fat loss and muscle-building benefits. It makes sense to make sure you’re not deficient in this vitamin.
How to take vitamin B12:
- As B12 can boost energy, it’s best to take a dose in the morning and before your workouts
Another common issue that many skinny-fat people have it high cholesterol. Countless studies show that fish oil can lower bad cholesterol levels.
Even more exciting, fish oil is also noted to increase your resting metabolic rate and enhance boy composition, according to the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition.
6 wk of supplementation with FO (fish oil) significantly increased lean mass and decreased fat mass. These changes were significantly correlated with a reduction in salivary cortisol following FO treatment.‘Effects of supplemental fish oil on resting metabolic rate, body composition, and salivary cortisol in healthy adults’ by the BMC on October 8, 2010, biomedcentral.com
How to take fish oil:
- Fish oil can be taken anytime during the day with a meal. I personally take fish oil with my first and final meals of the day.
What About Other Supplements?
There are many other supplements you can take but the goal here was to give you a simple solution that’s feasible. And I also don’t want you to fall int that trap where you’re spending half of your paycheck on supplements you don’t need.
That said, here are more supplements you may want to look into:
- Whey protein powder (I actually include this in my food budget)
- Natural testosterone booster like TestoFierce
- Conditioning agent and metabolism booster like Instant Knockout
Don’t Waste Money on Expensive Supplements
Whatever you do, don’t let yourself get caught up in the magic pill syndrome.
There are many supplements out there that will have you believe that it’s the all-in-one cure for skinny-fat and body transformation. Most of those claims are misleading.
Here are some types of supplements to avoid…
- Labels with outrageous claims
- Supplements with long lists of ingredients
- Supplements with ingredients you can’t pronounce (most of these have ‘fillers’ that do absolutely nothing)
- Supplements that are overpriced
The truth is you can get great results of simply ensuring that you are not deficient in the micronutrients your body needs.
Train Hard and Eat Good to Eliminate Skinny-Fat
The goal with supplements to transform your body from skinny-fat to lean and muscular is to ‘fill in the gaps’ of any nutrient deficiencies. And remember that your body requires more than the average person that doesn’t train.
It’s possible to get these nutrients through food alone. It’s just not always feasible. That’s where supplements come in handy.
However, supplements won’t do you much good if you’re not disciplined with your workouts and meal plan. But you already know that from reading Part 1 and Part 2 of the Skinny-Fat Muscle Building blog series.
I truly hope you enjoyed this series! Please consider sharing this with someone that needs to read this and get on track with building lean muscle!
Train with Passion,