Vanadyl sulfate is a common dietary supplement consisting of vanadium, oxygen, and sulfur. Vanadium is a trace mineral that naturally occurs in the diet, and most people don’t need to supplement it unless they have a diagnosed deficiency. However, some bodybuilders find that it helps to promote muscle growth. Here’s what you should know about the uses and benefits, as well as the risks, of vanadyl sulfate for bodybuilders.
Dietary vanadium comes from foods such as shellfish, mushrooms, soybeans, carrots, and a variety of vegetable oils. Supplemental vanadium, in various forms including vanadyl sulfate, has drawn a lot of interest due to its apparent ability to help slow the progression of heart disease, regulate blood pressure, and provide other health benefits. For bodybuilders, it’s the way that vanadyl sulfate interacts with glucose that is most interesting.
Vanadyl Sulfate and Glucose
Some people with type 2 diabetes find that vanadyl sulfate, like other forms of vanadium supplements, helps to stabilize their blood sugar, preventing both spikes and hypoglycemic drops. It appears that this is because it changes the way that insulin is processed in the body.
For bodybuilders, the theory is that vanadyl sulfate forces glucose, proteins, and amino acids into the muscles at a higher rate. This leads to faster and more complete bulking, while reducing the risk of fat gain. Some people also find that they have improved training recovery when using this supplement.
Bodybuilders may also be interested to know that some studies show that vanadyl sulfate may promote bone health. As you increase your weight training, vanadyl sulfate may help to reduce the risk of bone fractures.
Risks and Side Effects
Like all supplements, there are risks associated with taking too much vanadyl sulfate. These range from nausea and vomiting to problems with the nervous system. Therefore, it’s important to talk to your doctor before starting any supplement, especially if you have any underlying health conditions. Bodybuilding is a marathon, not a sprint, and slow bulking over time does have some advantages. Your doctor, your physical therapist, your coach, and everyone on your team should work together to help you determine the best course of action to meet your individual goals.
For some bodybuilders, supplementation with vanadyl sulfate is a smart choice as part of a comprehensive plan. Note that not all supplements are the same, and the supplement market in the United States is only loosely regulated. Always stick to brands you trust, and make sure you are aware of the dosage you are taking. Vanadyl sulfate is sometimes combined with other dietary supplements into a single capsule, so read the bottle and take the time to fully understand both supplements.
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