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Amino Acids

Amino acids: What are the benefits?

Amino acids are molecules that produce proteins when combined together, they are known as the building blocks of muscle-building protein.

There are two sorts of amino acids: essential and non-essential. The human body can't create essential amino acids, so it is important these are consumed in our daily diet. The eight essential amino acids are isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and valine. Non-essential amino acids can be manufactured by our body and are not necessary to obtain from our diet. These include glutamate, alanine, aspartate, glutamine, arginine, proline, serine, tyrosine, cysteine, taurine and glycine.

Amino acid supplements are taken by a number of athletes to help them obtain specific training advantages. Sports that require core strength, such as bodybuilding, weightlifting and boxing reap the benefits of additional amino acids as it assists athletes in their strength training.

Three amino acids, leucine, isoleucine, and valine, are identified as BCAAs (branched chain amino acids). As muscles have a particularly high content of BCAAs they can help prevent the breakdown of muscle tissue during intense exercise.

Both body building and endurance exercise use greater amounts of BCAAs than normal daily activities, increasing an athlete's need for dietary intake of these amino acids.

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Amino Acids

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