Amino Acids and BCAAs
Amino acids are the building blocks your body uses to make proteins. Amino acid supplements are effective in ensuring muscle growth, increasing energy, reducing the effects of cortisol (breakdown of muscle tissue) and decreasing exercise-induced muscle damage. Valine, leucine and isoleucine are the three Branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) which can be absorbed directly by skeletal muscle rather than having to be metabolized by the liver first. BCAAs are able to serve as an efficient energy source for the muscles during exercise and are commonly used to increase muscle mass, produce energy, reduce fatigue, lower blood sugar levels, reduce muscle soreness and enhance weight-loss.
Essential Amino Acids
Interestingly, the human body cannot produce 9 out of 20 amino acids known as the essential amino acids in protein. All these amino acids are an important requirement from the diet and play different roles in keeping the body healthy.
Indispensable for the body’s growth and development, Lysine helps to:
- Build and maintain new muscle protein,
- Produce carnitine
- Uptake of vital mineral nutrients
- Cross-link collagen polypeptides
This amino acid facilitates muscle growth and strength. It therefore holds high importance for bodybuilders. It also activates mTOR, which contributes tomuscle protein synthesis.
Essential for maintaining nitrogen balance within muscle cells, Isoleucine helps in muscle growth. It regulates blood sugar which is being used as fuel during exercise,and assists in hemoglobin production to transport iron to the blood.
This amino acid is an essential requirement for creatine formation and contributes to muscle growth. Methionine consists of sulfur, which is important for tissue and muscle health. Lack of sulfur in the body can cause damaged tissues, arthritis, and healing difficulties from injuries.
It is beneficial for the development and repair of muscle tissueas well as other tissues. It acts as a precursor to histamine which the immune system releases in response to allergies.
The body converts phenylalanine into tyrosine, a precursor to dopamine and adrenaline, which effects our mood and mental health. Tyrosine is also essential for the production of proteins, thyroid hormones, and enkephalins – the body’s natural pain relievers.
This amino acid is effective in ensuring strong bones. It keeps muscles strong and elastic and helps in the healing of tissue injuries and superficial wounds. It also aids the central nervous system, liver, heart and the immune system.
Tryptophan is converted to serotonin in the brain, lowers stress/depression and promotes healthy sleep patterns.
It takes care of the overall health of the muscle and alleviate disorders of the muscle. During physical workouts, it averts muscle tissue breakdown and increases energy production with enhanced glucose supply.
Functions of amino acids
- They act as building blocks for protein synthesis, which in turn heal the damage caused to the muscles duringrigorous workouts.
- Amino acids lead to muscle growth by contributing to hormone production, which facilitates the regulation of growth.
- Amino acids help in maintaining a healthy and robust immune system which plays a fundamental role in recovering from rigorous exercise or training.
- The body utilizes some of the essential amino acids in protein to build macromolecules that enable communication of body cells with each other and promote various chemical reactions.
Branched-chain Amino Acids (BCAAs):
Valine, leucine and isoleucine are the three BCAAs which are unique among the essential amino acids in that they can be absorbed directly by skeletal muscle rather than having to be metabolized by the liver first. BCAAs are able to serve as an efficient muscle energy source during exercise. Furthermore, researchers have demonstrated that supplementation of BCAAs before and after exercise have beneficial effects for promoting muscle-protein synthesis and decreasing exercise induced muscle damage and therefore may be beneficial for athletes.
These are the best amino acid supplements for stimulating muscle protein synthesis/muscle growth. They also increase energy, and minimize the effects of cortisol (or the break-down of muscle tissue).
BCAAs are a combination of Valine, leucine, and isoleucine, 3essential amino acids with a branched structure. The best amino acid supplements boost workout performance and promote muscle growth. They also help in weight-loss and provide relief from post-exercise fatigue.
All three BCAAs are important to keep the body healthy. Their foremost task is to assist in the building and repair of muscle tissue. Specifically, leucine can support protein synthesis by itself. Some of the most popular BCAA products and best amino acid supplements include:
Consisting of all three BCAA’s, these products ensure increased energy and muscle growth. They also combat the adverse effects of cortisol(breakdown of muscles) and reduce post-workout muscle soreness.
Functions of BCAAs
Your body can, therefore, use BCAAs to increase muscle mass (build muscle protein), produce energy, reduce fatigue, lower blood sugar levels, reduce muscle soreness, reduce complications from liver disease and enhance weight-loss.
Your body can utilize BCAAs to increase:
- Muscle mass
- Muscle protein and
- Weight loss
Additionally, they also help to reduce:
- Post-exercise fatigue
- Blood sugar levels
- Liver disease complications and
- Muscle soreness
Some common benefits of BCAAs
- The best amino acid supplements let you train persistently with reduced fatigue
- They are most beneficial for athletes or bodybuilders whose main concern is fitness or substantial mass building.
You can take BCAAs all through the day – before, during and after workouts, for muscle growth, and for recovery.