When you are looking to put on muscle mass, there are a number of different things that you need to take into account.
Diet and exercise are obviously important, but what about supplements?
There are a number of different supplements on the market that claim to help with muscle growth, but which ones actually work?
In this article, we will discuss the two best supplements for bulk, and we will also talk about who should be taking them and who should not be taking them.
Please keep in mind supplements are lightly regulated by the FDA. Their stated claims have no guarantee. They aren’t cures or treatments for any diseases.
Food is your best source of nutrition, especially for bulking. Please check with your doctor before any supplement program.
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If you want more helpful info on supplements – including risks and general FDA guidelines – please see our “Supplements and Vitamins – Ultimate Beginner’s Guide”.
2 Best Supplements for Bulk
- Best for Overall Bulk – Optimum Nutrition
- Best for Muscle Bulk – Bulk Supplements
Overall bulk refers to muscle and fat. Best for strength and weight gain / mass.
Muscle bulk refers to building lean muscle.
1 – Best for Overall Bulk – Optimum Nutrition
- Price = $48.99
- # of Servings = 8
- Price per Serving = $6.12
- Product Reviews = 4.7/5 (347 reviews)
- Serving Size = 2 heaping scoops
- Taste / Absorbability = Chocolate, peanut butter, strawberry, vanilla
- Labeled Effect = Supports muscle building and weight gain Goals
- Food Allergens = Contains soy, milk, eggs, wheat
- Pros = Top rated weight gainer supplement, contains creatine and tons of carbs, proteins, and vitamins and minerals
- Cons = High cost per serving
About “Serious Mass”:
Serious Mass is a high-calorie formula that supports muscle building and weight gain goals.
With 1,250 calories per serving, 50 grams of protein, over 250 grams of carbohydrates, and 3 grams of creatine monohydrate per serving, this powder makes the ideal post-workout and between meals shake for your sizing up and muscle growth goals.
It also contains many branched chain amino acids for maximum muscle protein synthesis.
Serious Mass is also the #1 best selling Amazon supplement for weight gain.
While the cost per serving is high, we still consider this the best supplement for bulk because it has the broadest array of components to help you reach your bulking goals.
About “Optimum Nutrition”:
Made athletes, Optimum Nutrition has decades of experience. According to ReviewMeta.com, Optimum Nutrition receives a 4.1/5 average adjusted rating from 67,776 verified reviews.
- Start = 1986
- Revenue = $21 million
- Employees = 112
- Mission = Helping performance focused athletes achieve their goals
- Third Party Certifications = GMP, NSF
- Third Party Reviews = 4.1/5 average adjusted rating from 67,776 verified reviews
2 – Best for Muscle Bulk – Bulk Supplements
- Price = $29.96
- # of Servings = 50
- Price per Serving = $0.59
- Product Reviews = 4.8/5 (9,767 reviews)
- Serving Size = 5 grams (2 tsp) before workout
- Taste / Absorbability = The micronized creatine breaks down in liquid without residue and is non flavored so it mixes well in shakes
- Labeled Effect = Contribute to increased muscle mass
- Food Allergens = Safe
- Pros = Highly rated, extremely popular, high quality creatine supplement
- Cons = Resealable bag may not reseal with 100% reliability
About “Creatine Monohydrate”:
Creatine Monohydrate is an organic compound that helps recycle ATP in muscle and brain tissue.
It was discovered in 1832 by Michel Eugéne Chevreul, and the first evidence of its benefits on muscles was found in 1912 by Harvard University researchers.
It became available as a dietary supplement in 1993, and has since become one of the most widely studied supplements.
Creatine is commonly taken by athletes and bodybuilders and has become a staple of workout supplements.
Benefits of creatine include:
- Increased muscle mass
- Improved strength
- Enhanced brain function
- Increased energy levels
Creatine is one of the most common and well-researched muscle building supplements out there.
One of the reasons creatine increases bulk is because it allows your muscles to hold more water.
This is why you might notice a slight weight gain when you first start taking it. However, this weight gain is not from fat, but from water retention.
Creatine also gives your muscle cells and muscle tissue more energy to work out and recover. Therefore creatine will help you increase muscle mass and overall bulk.
While creatine may sound similar to whey protein powder, there is no protein in creatine. Rather, creatine is derived from essential amino acids.
Creatine gives your muscle cells and muscle tissue more energy. You still need protein for muscle however.
With Bulk Supplements, you get a very low cost per serving of high quality creatine.
About “Bulk Supplements”:
Bulk Supplements started in 2011 and is based in Nevada. Its main manufacturing facility is FDA registered. According to ReviewMeta.com, average adjusted rating is 4.4/5 from 39,370 verified reviews.
- Start = 2011
- Revenue = $10 million
- Employees = 50
- Mission =
- Third Party Certifications = NSF, cGMP
- Third Party Reviews = 4.4/5 from 39,370 reviews
What factors do we use to rank supplements?
1 – Price: What’s the price of the supplement? What’s the cost per serving?
- At Eating Enlightenment we value quality over price. However, all else being equal, then price comes into consideration.
2 – Reviews: How many reviews for each product? What’s the average rating? How many third party reviews?
- We strongly believe in third party reviews. Many supplement companies list positive reviews on their website, but third party reviews include negative comments. We always go with third party reviews.
3 – Reputation: How reputable is the brand behind the supplement? How long has the brand been around? What’s their mission?
- We believe that a company’s intention is highly important and should be one of your top purchasing decision factors.
4 – Taste / Absorption = What’s the taste? How quickly does your body absorb the supplement? Do reviews mention any negative side effects like an upset stomach?
5 – Perceived Therapeutic Effect = What beneficial effects or feelings does this supplement promote?
6 – Food Allergens = Does the company provide allergen info?
7 – Science / Certifications: Does the company list transparent scientific studies on their website? Do third party certifications test the company’s supplement for quality control? How many certifications does the company have?
8 – Pros/Cons: What are the pros and cons of each supplement? How is the supplement unique? For what situations is this supplement best?
Who benefits most from supplements for bulk?
- Anyone looking to gain weight or bulk up muscle mass
Author’s Note: I used to weigh 130 pounds and you could see my ribcage. For a couple of years I really focused on weight training and bulking up.
The main thing I did was eat a lot more food and lift heavy weights 3x per week. To help boost my caloric consumption, I personally used a supplement for mass.
When should I take supplements for bulk?
You can take a muscle building supplement for bulk any time of day. However, many people find that taking them post-workout or between meals is best in order to help with absorption and prevent an upset stomach.
Who may not benefit from supplements for bulk?
There are a few risks to be aware of when taking supplements for bulk.
First, if you have food allergies, be sure to check the ingredients list carefully!
Some mass gainers contain whey protein, dairy or other allergens – so if you are allergic to any of these or you are vegan please be careful.
Please know that supplements for bulk are similar, but different than supplements for crossfit or supplements for pre-work out energy. Likewise, beta alanine supplements are also used frequently in conjunction with exercise, but are not specifically for bulking.
Finally, children under the age of 18 should not take supplements for bulk without medical supervision.
How to take supplements for bulk?
The best way to take supplements for bulk is to follow the directions on the label.
Most mass gainers will recommend that you mix one scoop with milk or water and drink it once or twice per day.
How soon after taking supplements for bulk will I see gains?
Some people report seeing muscle growth gains within a few days, while others may take up to a month or two. Just remember that everyone is different and results will vary!
Be patient and consistent with your workout routine and diet, and you will eventually see the results you desire.
How can I bulk up fast?
Here are the basic tips to bulk up fast.
- Eat more calories: Focus on adding more healthy calories to your diet. This could mean eating more meals per day, or adding snacks between meals. Most likely you will need to meal prep. In the beginning it will feel strange to eat this much more food but if you are struggling to gain weight then this is an obstacle you must overcome.
- Lift heavy weights: Aim to lift heavier weights and challenge yourself in the gym. This will help build muscle breakdown. With proper muscle recovery, you’ll see muscle mass.
- Get enough sleep: Be sure to get enough sleep each night as this can help with recovery and building muscle.
- Try a different supplement: If you feel like you’ve tried almost everything, it might be time to try a different supplement, like branched chain amino acids or one of the many protein supplements like whey protein. These are known for helping improve performance and muscle building.
No matter what, don’t give up! With time and dedication, you will reach your goals.
What if I can’t bulk up even with supplements?
For me, my first month I didn’t gain any weight!
I had an honest conversation with a personal trainer. I said I was eating more. He said I needed to eat even more.
Eating more calories really is the key. You can search the web for the best muscle building supplements but if you aren’t eating enough then it won’t work.
You really have to eat more than you think you do.
Bodybuilders say the hardest part is their diet. They can do the workouts and get more muscle mass. That’s the easier part. The hard part is eating enough calories to continue bulking.
This is the biggest bulking challenge by far and if you are falling short, this is where you need to focus.
If you are looking to gain weight or bulk up muscle mass, supplements for bulk can be a good idea. Be sure to follow the other tips like lifting heavy weights (with supervision if you don’t know how) and getting enough water and sleep.
There are only a few risks to be aware of when taking these supplements, but just to be safe, please consult with a doctor before starting any new supplement regimen.
With time and dedication, you will reach your goals!