Achieve your fitness goals with our step-by-step nutrition and supplement guide

Introducing the Fitness Guide

  • More than the sum of its parts: we took 6 fitness-related Supplement Guides (usually $49 each), combined them, and added sections on dieting and fitness to provide you with the most unique guide of its kind
  • Step-by-step directions on what to take and how
  • Tips on how to measure your fitness and progress
  • Dieting suggestions
  • Free lifetime updates: your PDF will be updated whenever one of the included Supplement Guides gets updated and every time we create a new fitness-related Supplement Guide
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
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What is fitness to you?

The truth about being fit

Ask ten people “What does it mean to be fit?”, and you’ll get ten different answers.

  • Being fit could mean a running a half-marathon to one person.
  • For someone else, it could be going on a 2-hour hike and not being exhausted afterward.
  • For others, it could mean being able to play with their grandkids, or simply waking up without pain and stiffness.

Fitness is usually oversimplified: you’re told to focus on weight loss, muscle gain, and exercise. And those are important. But a deeper scan of the evidence shows that fitness is comprised of multiple components that rarely get mentioned. These components differ depending on who you are. Let’s look at a quick example: me!

A decade ago, my main goal was to pack on muscle. For 15 years, that’s all I cared about. I had a 430-pound deadlift, and both my squat and bench were above 300. I was roughly 175 lbs at 12% body fat, and my goal was to be consistently sub 10%.

(I’m 5’9, hailing from a family of thin Indians, and my max bench was a whopping 65 pounds after my freshman year of college.)

Fast forward to today, and my definition of fitness has completely changed. I was diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a disorder that affects connective tissue. I’ve had over a dozen MRIs and multiple joint surgeries. I still research fitness on a daily basis, but now with a broader understanding of interconnected factors such as joint pain.

When considering your own fitness (not just this year, but in the decades to come), you have to consider the six most significant factors:

  1. Muscle and exercise performance
    Muscle mass helps minimize fat gain, keeps testosterone levels high, and lets you enjoy physical activities.
  2. Fat Loss
    Higher body fat leads to lower testosterone, higher estrogen, and impaired hormones.
  3. Testosterone
    Higher levels of testosterone lead to more muscle, mental clarity, and improved mood.
  4. Cardiovascular health
    Improved cardiovascular health prevents early heart complications, and supports a more robust body.
  5. Joint health
    Healthy joints allows your body to deal with the strains of exercise, sports, and normal everyday activities.
  6. Sleep
    Deep, restful sleep lets your body recover from the day’s activities and wake up feeling energized.

Perhaps most importantly, each factor plays a role in all the other factors. So if you’re only focused on a few of those, you’re basically creating roadblocks for yourself!

Our bodies are complex machines. So as an analogy, let’s look at a much less complex machine. Imagine if you found a VW Beetle from the 1950s. Everything is original - the chassis, the engine, the tires, and so forth.

Let’s say you upgraded just the engine… say you swap it out with something from 2018. What would happen?

The drivetrain would underperform. The shocks would fail pretty quickly. The wheels would not be able to handle the speed.

By only focusing on one component and neglecting the others, you’ve only marginally improved the performance, and opened up new risks.

This is what happens if you don’t focus on the big picture.

Here’s another example - your knees.

When walking, every pound of excess weight that you carry is about 4 pounds of extra pressure on your knees. This doubles up to 8 pounds of extra pressure on your knees when running.

If you’re 20 pounds overweight, that is 80 pounds of extra pressure on your knees for every step you take!

So you have to be careful not to overdo it on cardio. You can slowly ratchet up your activity levels and lose a bit of weight.

But if you approach the problem through multiple angles, synergies start to form. You can decrease some of your knee pain with smarter nutrition and supplementation, making it more comfortable to move around. The more you move around, the stronger your cardiovascular system becomes, and the easier it is to lose weight. And as you lose weight, there is less pressure on your knees. Less joint pain can improve sleep and recovery, which then feeds back into physical activity.

As you improve one component, it helps you to also improve the others.

I hope we’ve made it abundantly clear: it’s all interconnected!

The job of our Fitness Guide is to translate all the evidence about those six important factors, so you know which supplements and lifestyle approaches work, which don’t, and which might but don’t have enough evidence yet.

What is fitness to you?

Here’s a sneak peek of what else you’ll discover...

  • Why we say “the dose makes the poison” and how it applies to fitness
  • The most accurate ways to measure fat loss
  • How to lose fat the right way
  • Why keeping your LDL-C levels in check won’t protect you from heart attacks
  • The 3 general categories most dieters fall into
  • The one ability to reach any long-term fat loss goal you must master
  • Why the standard treatment for joint pain is fraught with problems
  • The two ways of monitoring fitness progress, and why both are equally important

the Fitness Guide

In our Fitness Guide, you’ll find six of our top-selling Supplement Guides, plus added information on dieting efficiently and assessing your fitness level. You’ll learn which supplements work best, and more importantly, how to combine them to get the results you want.

Best of all, we make it easy-as-pie to figure out.

  • We begin each of the six primers with an overview of strategies to address common fitness-related problems.
  • We follow with a comprehensive list of the core supplements you should consider taking to reach your desired outcome.
  • Next, we move to primary options (which may provide substantial benefits in the right context), secondary options (which have less evidence for their effects), promising supplements (for which evidence is still mostly lacking), and inadvisable supplements (which are more likely to harm you or empty your wallet than support your efforts).
  • Finally, we look at different ways to combine your supplements so you reach your health and fitness goals, faster.

How the Fitness Guide benefits you

Supplement Synergy

Learn how to best combine science-backed supplements for optimal results.

Easy-to-Follow Directions

Learn which supplements to take, when, and how.

Up-to-date Information

Your guide comes with lifetime updates. Benefit from the latest research on fitness supplementation.

Unbiased Information

We’re 100% unbiased and unaffiliated. We do not sell supplements, provide coaching or consulting, or accept donors, sponsorship, or advertising. All our recommendations are based strictly on the evidence. We’ll tell you what works and what to avoid.

What are the topics covered in our Fitness Guide?

  • Testosterone
  • Fat Loss
  • Joint Health
  • Measuring Fitness
  • Muscle Gain & Exercise Performance
  • Cardiovascular Health
  • Sleep
  • Dieting

What questions does this guide answer?

  • What does it mean to be fit? — Tips on how to measure your fitness level and progress.
  • What should I take? — A list of supplements for each fitness goal, organized by effectiveness.
  • How should I take it? — Step-by-step directions on how to take each supplement, plus guidelines on how to “stack” them depending on your situation.
  • What else should I know? — Answers to common questions on the supplements mentioned in the guide.
  • What diet should I choose? — A look at some popular diets (why they do or don’t work) and at what makes a diet successful.
  • What should I avoid? — A list of supplements that aren’t worth your money or that present possible health risks.

Who is
and why should you trust us?

  • is an independent encyclopedia on supplementation and nutrition. We’re unique because we don’t sell supplements and aren’t affiliated in any way with any supplement company. When we recommend a supplement (or say another is garbage), it has no impact on our bottom line.
  • Since our inception in early 2011, we’ve had but one goal: to be the best source of unbiased information on supplements and nutrition. Our team comprises medical doctors, biophysicists, pharmacists, nutritionists, sports dietitians, kinesiologists, etc. — all accredited experts, but with very different backgrounds, so that when we do research, we get the full picture.
  • This single-minded dedication to providing well-researched, unbiased information has made us the #1 site for supplement information. Over 30,000 visitors visit us every day; over 35,000 health and fitness professionals use our A-to-Z Supplement Reference; and we've been featured in a number of the major online and print publications in the world, including Men's Health, The Huffington Post, and The Guardian. ----------------------------

What do health professionals have to say about

Jennifer Sygo uses to get “the lay of the land” quickly

Examine’s updates help me to stay on top of current research on supplements and diet trends. I appreciate the detail on topics like supplement-nutrient interactions, and their in-depth summaries are a great way to get “the lay of the land” quickly and efficiently.

Jennifer Sygo
RD Cleveland Clinic Canada | Performance Toronto Raptors
Bryan Marshall recommends us to any fitness/performance professional has been a long-time favourite resource of mine. Everything that the team at puts out is relevant, trustworthy, and most importantly, actionable. I would highly recommend these resources to any fitness/performance professional or anyone interested in learning how to live a healthier lifestyle.

Bryan Marshall
Vancouver Canucks | Player Development & Applied Sport Science
Lindsay Langford's 'go-to' for supplement research has been my "go-to" when looking for the latest in supplement research. I find the site easy to navigate and appreciate the easy access to scientific information, when time is of the essence. I appreciate the ability to view all citations and trust as a sound scientific tool.

Lindsay Langford
MS, RD, CSSD | Sports Dietitian, Indiana Pacers
For Stuart Phillips, is a signal in a sea of scientific noise provides up-to-date, informative, factually correct and unbiased research reviews that I trust. is a signal in a sea of scientific noise!

Stuart Phillips
Director, Physical Activity Centre of Excellence (PACE) | Director, McMaster Centre for Nutrition, Exercise, and Health Research | Tier 1 Canada Research Chair, Skeletal Muscle Health
Ramsey Nijem relies on for credible and relevant information on all things sport performance

As the Head Performance and Strength Coach for an NBA team, I am responsible for delivering credible and relevant information on all things sport performance. is my go to source when it comes to nutrition and supplementation and their fitness guide does a great job breaking down the supplements (and even nutrition) that will help you optimize your overall fitness.

Ramsey Nijem
Head Performance & Strength Coach, Sacramento Kings
John Meadows trusts to tell him the truth on supplements

I'll keep this simple: is where I go when I want to look up what the science says on supplements and nutrition. If you want the truth on supplements and what works and what doesn't, no one does it better. You can tell they spend the time and effort to get the full picture. And as a pro bodybuilder, that's exactly what I need.

John Meadows
IFFB Pro Bodybuilder
Tavis Piattoly leans on for the most current evidence to help his athletes

I’ve been fortunate to have the opportunity to work with high performance athletes at all levels. The majority of my athlete clients are not only looking to maximize performance through diet but also through safe and effective supplementation. With over 50,000 supplements on the market, it’s difficult to keep up with the latest research which is why I lean on the brilliant team at for the most current evidence based data on dietary supplements.

Tavis Piattoly
MS, RD, LDN | Co-Founder, My Sports Dietitian | Former Sports Dietitian for New Orleans Saints & New Orleans Pelicans
Michael Easter turns to when he needs to understand complex nutrition topics

I turn to any time I need to understand complex nutrition topics. The team consistently delivers science-backed, practical, and digestible information that I can trust.

Michael Easter
Lecturer - Journalism, UNLV | Journalist, contributor to Men's Health, Outside, and more
Mike Hart visits daily is the most trusted resource on the internet for making intelligent decisions regarding your health. I visit it daily and frequently suggest to my patients to visit before purchasing any supplements or making any dietary changes

Mike Hart
For Adam Bornstein, is part of the solution

In many ways, the fitness industry is broken. And among the many people trying to fix the biggest issues, is a big part of the solution. They provide no-nonsense, accurate information that can help a beginner as much as it can someone who has been living a fit lifestyle for years. Their accuracy and credibility makes them invaluable.

Adam Bornstein
NYT bestselling author is where Tom Venuto goes to find the truth

With, never again will you need to worry about knowing whether the claims of the billion dollar supplement industry are true or false. You’ll have the truth right at your fingertips. Use this encyclopedic resource as your go-to-guide and you’ll never have to waste time searching google and wondering whether what you found is evidence or (biased) advertisement, you won’t have to waste your money or risk your health on personal trial and error, and you won’t even have to sort through the real research (pubmed) because the guys at Examine have spent years doing it for you. Maybe the best part is that, finally the evidence-based trustworthy information we need is all in one place, and is smartly organized so you can find the answers you need in just minutes. Whether you’re a consumer or a fitness pro, this is a no-brainer must-have for your library.

Tom Venuto
Bestselling author, Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle
When John Berardi needs unbiased, meticulously researched, and scientifically credible supplement information, he visits

Whenever I want unbiased, meticulously researched, and scientifically credible supplement information, I turn to my friends at They review thousands of studies and give bottom-line supplement recommendations better than anyone else in the industry. For me, my team, and my colleagues, they've become a trusted resource.

John Berardi
PhD, CSCS | Co-founder Precision Nutrition
Eric Cressey trust's research-backed, unbiased perspective

The supplement industry can be tremendously confusing for a number of reasons. First, the margins are incredibly high — so there are a lot of unethical weasels with no scientific background making bold and unsubstantiated claims to separate you from your money. Second, it's a dynamic industry, as new products, brands, and research emerge every single day. Fortunately, the guys at have streamlined the process of educating us all by providing an incredibly up-to-date resource on the supplements we encounter on a daily basis, as well as some of the more obscure ones that are out there that might "stump" us. This is an excellent product not only because it's a completely research-backed, unbiased perspective without any financial conflicts of interest, but also because it's exhaustively thorough and well written. I highly recommend it.

Eric Cressey
For Dr. Bryan Chung, is the repository resource for nutritional supplement information has become THE repository resource for nutritional supplement information. Most other similar databases fail at what they're good at, which is being accessible and being comprehensive. Their frequent updates stay on top of the literature as it evolves. gives me an excellent overview of the body of work, which helps me filter and refine my search strategy when I'm looking up supplements that I get asked about that I've never heard of. The Human Effect Matrix provides interpretation that is lacking in every other supplement database in the world. Most people don't have the time or interest to develop high-level expertise, but need somewhere to turn to to make informed decisions about their supplements. That information is at

Dr. Bryan Chung
Dr. Yoni Freedhoff sees in a massive and helpful undertaking

It's insufficient to simply rely on belief, conjecture or internet advice to determine if supplements are right for you. Instead you need to rely on research. With's reference guide not only will you find their summary of the research, but also links to the original papers should you want to do your own due diligence. Truly a massive and helpful undertaking.

Dr. Yoni Freedhoff
The Guardian
Men's Health
Fast Company
The New York Times
The Washington Post
The Boston Globe
Mens Fitness
Muscle Fitness
The Huffington Post
  • What does it mean to be fit? — Tips on how to measure your fitness level and progress.
  • What should I take? — A list of supplements for each fitness goal, organized by effectiveness.
  • How should I take it? — Step-by-step directions on how to take each supplement and guidelines on how to “stack” them depending on your situation.
  • What else should I know? — Answers to common questions on the supplements mentioned in the guide.
  • What diet should I choose? — A look at some popular diets (why they do or don’t work) and at what makes a diet successful.
  • What should I avoid? — A list of supplements that aren’t worth your money or that present possible health risks.
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Refund Policy

100% Money-back guarantee

All purchases are risk-free. Our Fitness Guide comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee — no questions asked. If you don’t like what you see, just email us via within 30 days for your full refund.


What is

Founded in 2011, is an education company led by a growing team of experts — PhDs, researchers, medical doctors, pharmacists, and more. With over 2.5 million visitors each month, our website is the trusted resource on nutrition and supplement research.

Who is the Fitness Guide for?

It is designed for anyone who wants to meet their individual fitness goals using clear and concise guidelines.

I own the Supplement Guides bundle; can I get the Fitness Guide at a discount?

Yes. If you own the Supplement Guides bundle, you can get the Fitness Guide for just $10.00. Please email us at and we will send you a special link for the discounted price.

Is the Fitness Guide composed of all-new Supplement Guides?

The Fitness Guide combines 6 guides we’ve been updating since 2014:
  • Muscle Gain & Exercise Performance
  • Fat Loss
  • Testosterone
  • Cardiovascular Health
  • Joint Health
  • Sleep
We didn’t just heap 6 guides under one cover, however: we merged them into a coherent whole to provide you with a unified reference on fitness supplementation, and we added some exclusive material — a section on measuring your fitness level, another on dieting, and an informative intro for each included Supplement Guide.

Will you ever add new Supplement Guides to the Fitness Guide?

Yes. As we create new Supplement Guides, we’ll add the fitness-related ones to your Fitness Guide.

How often will the Fitness Guide be updated?

We will update the Fitness Guide the same way we update our Supplement Guides. Our goal is to update our Supplement Guides at least once a year.

Will you sell a print version of the Fitness Guide?

No, we won’t. In order to provide you with the latest information, we don’t offer hard copies of any of our products. So, like our Supplement Guides, the Fitness Guide will be a PDF, and each time you download it, you’ll be downloading the latest version.

What is the refund policy for the Fitness Guide?

We offer a 30-day money-back guarantee on all our products. Should you be unhappy with the Fitness Guide for any reason, simply email us at and we will refund your purchase.