These are my top 5 MMA supplements; it’s very subjective, so many people might not agree, but here goes:
This stuff is amazing for preventing a muscle pump. When this happens in grappling, your grip strength just vanishes. This can be a big problem if you are carry a decent amount of muscle on your frame. 2g 20 mins before training sorts it right out.
2. Beta Alanine
Beta Alanine works by buffering lactate. Again, this is a big problem when grappling and sparring MMA. The only problem is the horrible tingling sensation you get just after ingesting this stuff. Don’t take at the same time as taurine, they compete for uptake/absoprtion. Baking soda can be taken with or instead of beta alanine, it has similar effects and seems to enhance muscular endurance.
Explosive power is vital in MMA. You’re not going to do a great double leg takedown or thai roundhouse kick if your body isn’t able to muster up any explosive power. Creatine works by helping your “ATP-PC” energy system last slightly longer and recover quicker. It’s proven in dozens of studies to work effectively, especially in intermittent exercise like sprints. I take 3g after training, current thoughts are that there is no need to load.
4. Alpha Lipoic Acid
Not only is this a very strong and effective anti-oxidant, it also acts as an ‘insulin mimicker’ (to a certain extent anyway) and when taken with carbs and creatine; allows for a much better absorption of the creatine and also more carbs are partitioned for use in the muscle cells rather than being stored as fat.
5. Magnesium Glycinate
Magnesium is amazing for relaxing tense muscles, or muscles in spasm. There are sprays which are effective and epsom salts that you can add to the bath (mind they don’t dehydrate you). I prefer tablets, glycinate is the only form that you can take in a high dosage and it won’t give you the sh!ts.
Reddit is a great place for info on all types of supplements
Update – March 2017
I’ve gone more holistic with a whole-foods approach over the last year or so, and tried to cut out the majority of supplements that I use.
I still use magnesium glycinate for muscle tension
I use baking soda – 10g before training, avoid any food an hour before as it can upset your stomach
CBD oil is the best anti-inflammatory I’ve been able to find. More info on cbd oil here.