This article was written by Nick Millspaugh. Nick played D-1 Baseball at IPFW in Fort Wayne, IN. He finished his collegiate career at Indiana Wesleyan University alongside Atlanta Braves’ starting RHP Brandon Beachy.

In todays sports world, there are countless amounts of exterior influences. Athletes are constantly striving to get to that next level. The previous statement is no different then before but the main difference is the influence of steroids and supplements. A prime example is when the MLB ended its strike and Sammy Sosa and Mark McGuire brought America back to baseball with an incredible home run race. I can remember watching every night eager to see which one hit a home run that night. This was later unfortunately tainted by the accusations that they were assisted that year by taking steroids.

This year alone, about 1 million high school student-athletes will experiment with steroids and much more will consume supplements that contain banned substances. It is very tempting to take something that could possibly harm you with pressures to get to the next level. Here are a couple things to consider:

Supplements do not have to be tested: When you go to your local supplement store, you are typically reliant on the clerk behind the counter to give you a suggestion. Also, because there are no regulations on the products, this means that anyone can create a supplement and slap on a label with whatever ingredients. In most cases, companies will hide the ingredients behind a “proprietary blend”. To give you a better idea of what is out there click here and see a consumer reports of 12 of the most popular protein drinks (most had lead, mercury, cadmium and arsenic) and a list of companies the NFL has banned its players from endorsing because it produces products with banned substances.

Supplements should be designed to help: A supplement is taken because we can’t find that type of formulation in our daily diet. There is no way to get the amount of nutrition anymore that you need and maintain a healthy caloric intake without supplements. The main thing to look for is a green check mark. This means that this product has been certified by a 3rd party lab called Informed Choice. Informed choice tests for over 200 banned substances and is the biggest testing facility in the world. They are USOC (United States Olympic Committee) and IOC (International Olympic Committee) certified, which is the most stringent certification to receive. What does this mean for you? This means that you can at least rest assured that what you are taking is safe and that it works. It means that what the label says is in it, actually is in it!

We will discuss supplements in further detail in later articles Please contact us if you have any questions on what you should take and if you are taking the right product. A recommendation from the ABPA would be to look into AdvoCare. They are backed by years of science, have top athletes that use and endorse their products and yes have the green check mark on the box. You can visit their website by clicking here.

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