March 2013

March 2013: Tips from a Golf Pro

Author: Pete Popovich | Photographer: Photography by Anne

Dietary Supplements to Improve Your Golf Game

The world of supplements has become a billion dollar a year business. As with other businesses of such size and in today’s information age, the question becomes, “With so much information, how do I know what is best for me?” The supplements discussed here work to 1) improve your ability to play to your potential and 2) have a positive effect on your health that their mainstream competitors do not. All of the supplements mentioned below work to help you in different ways, but all in ways that improve health and allow you to enjoy the game to a greater degree.

• CuraMed. One of the best things you can take for inflammation is turmeric, which is a component of Indian ayurvedic medicine. The main agent responsible for most of the biological activity of turmeric is curcumin, which is the main ingredient in CuraMed. You could take turmeric on a daily basis; yet to get the same effect from turmeric, as you would from CuraMed, you would have to eat it all day every day.

CuraMed has up to a 10 times better absorption rate than curcurmin alone, and with significant levels in the bloodstream, has an 8- 10-hour retention time in your system. This provides your body with unbelievable support for a healthy inflammation response without the negative side effects (damage to your gut) of traditional anti-inflammatories. In addition, it supports your immune and cardiovascular systems as well as resistance to free radical activity. If you keep a bottle of traditional anti-inflammatories in your bag and eat them like M&Ms before, during and after your round, then this is definitely one supplement you want to consider.

• Ultima Replenisher. Hydration and electrolyte balance is key to a golfer’s ability to maintain focus and attention during the 4-5 hours it takes to play a round of golf. Whether playing in the heat of summer or the cooler months, it is important to stay hydrated and electrolyte balanced. (You lose almost as much water in the cooler months as you do during the summer, only in the cooler months it happens by the colder weather drying out your skin and the body’s countering attempts to keep it hydrated.) Most of today’s mainstream electrolyte drinks are full of sugars, glutens and GMOs (genetically modified organisms). Ultima Replenisher has none of these. What it does have is all of the minerals and vitamins (double that of most of today’s mainstream drinks with half the calories) you need to maintain focus and play your best. It comes in various flavors: grape, lemon, orange and raspberry, and a toddler version is available.

• Ultra Mag (Magnesium). Did you know that athletes have a greater need for magnesium than most people and, contrary to popular opinion, golfers are considered athletes? New literature shows that up to 75 percent of the Western world is magnesium deficient. As the fourth most abundant mineral in the body, involved in over 300 biochemical reactions, it is no wonder that magnesium is important for improved performance on the course. Research from MIT has shown that magnesium is responsible for regulating parts of the brain responsible for memory and learning, and adequate levels of magnesium are needed within the cerebral spinal fluid to maintain plasticity in your synapses. Without enough magnesium, your brain is at a disadvantage, and learning—be it a new swing motion, different way to putt, or how to manage yourself around the course—becomes much more difficult due to the brain’s inability to develop. The list of benefits from taking magnesium is virtually limitless: better sleep, improved brain function, muscle development, cardiovascular health, osteoporosis prevention and more. Many foods contain magnesium, including almonds, spinach, yogurt, rice, bananas, etc., but eating these more than likely will not give an active golfer enough. Supplementing with 400-500 mg. of magnesium, and making sure it contains four types: citrate, taurinate, glycinate and succinate (having four different types will ensure better absorption by your body) will ensure you have enough.

Supplementation is not just for elite athletes at the professional level. It is also for those looking to improve their games by staying healthy and taking the necessary supplements to do so. All of the above are 100 percent natural and have been proven, by various studies, to be better for you than their mainstream alternatives. This is but a short list of supplements that can help improve your performance on the golf course and allow you to get more enjoyment out of your game.

NOTE: Before taking any supplement, please consult your physician. Information here was obtained from various sources, including the C.H.E.K. Institute, Poliquin Strength Institute, Office of Dietary Supplements: National Institute of Health, as well as personal trial testing with the help of Justin Price, CSCS of Aspire Fitness & Wellness.

For more information on these supplements and others that will help you reach your golfing potential, contact the Golf Performance Academy-HH at (843) 338-6737, pete@golfacademyhiltonhead.com, or on Facebook at Golf Performance Academy-Hilton Head. Getting the proper supplements might just prove to be one of the key ingredients missing in your game.

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