Project Body Smart | 5 vitamins that help build muscle tone


5 vitamins that help build muscle tone

By Pamela Reinsel Cotter

Dr. John Cuomo, executive director Research and Development for the global nutrition company USANA Health Sciences, says there are five vitamins that can help you build your muscle strength and tone.


“Muscle is mainly made up of protein,” Cuomo says. “Therefore, protein metabolism (breaking protein down into amino acids and combining those amino acids into new proteins) is critical for muscle building.”

“In addition, muscle function is dependent on energy production. The energy used by all cells is called ATP. Glucose (carbohydrate) is a key fuel for ATP production. We use glucose as the main fuel to produce energy in all cells, including muscle cells.”

Here are the nutrients he recommends:


Vitamin D

– Helps immune and muscle function. Studies have shown that proper vitamin D levels in the body are associated with muscle strength and performance.


Fish oil

– Or the omega-3 fats in fish oil may decrease muscle protein breakdown. This may be through improvements in insulin sensitivity, and insulin resistance is associated with muscle breakdown.


Vitamin C

– Required for collagen and elastin synthesis, and it is also an important supplement to take daily because it’s responsible for the health of the blood vessels, which support the muscles’ needs for oxygen and nutrients.


Vitamin E

– An antioxidant that helps cell membrane recovery from oxidative stress. Cell membrane reliability is essential for cellular function and growth.


B vitamins

– B1 (thiamin) is important for protein metabolism and the formation of hemoglobin. Hemoglobin carries oxygen to cells, including muscle cells, and without oxygen energy, production is compromised. B2 (riboflavin) is involved in energy metabolism, glucose metabolism, the oxidation of fatty acids, with some effects on protein metabolism. B6 (pyridoxine) is important for protein metabolism, growth, and carbohydrate utilization. And B12 (cyanocobalamin) is important for the maintenance of nerve tissue and is essential for the metabolism of fats and carbohydrates, energy metabolism, and cell regeneration.


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