More athletes, amateur weightlifters and others who exercise are realizing the power of BCAAs. That’s why they are part of their exercise equipment. These supplements play a key role in the recovery and strength of the individuals. Research shows that there are more benefits than side effects that these supplements have. Here is a thorough look into BCAAs, and why they’re on high demand today more than ever:
What are BCAAs?
BCAAs, or branched-chain amino acids in full, are supplements that increase the strength of those who take them. It also helps their bodies to recover after an intense work out session. They are included in the individuals’ diet because the body isn’t able to synthesize them as a single unit.
There are nine crucial amino acids, all of which are present in food and can’t be manufactured by the body. Of all of them, only three belong in the BCAA class. They are; isoleucine, which promotes energy storage in muscle cells, leucine, which repairs and builds muscle as well as regulating blood sugar levels and valine, which minimizes fatigue and hinders the breakdown of muscles.
BCAAs are metabolized in the bloodstream because they are required by the body to regulate normal body functions.
When is the ideal time to take BCAAs?
Various experts offer varying advice to their patients. Some recommend that it should be taken before a work out session. Others say that they are best taken after work out. Whichever time a person chooses to take them, they have been proven to offer the same great results if used consistently. Specialists, however, advise that if a person has enough branched chain amino acids in their body, then there’s no need of taking the supplements.
First-time users may experience side effects such as a headache, vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea in extreme cases, but all these will fade away as they continue taking the supplement. These are simply ways that the body adjusts to the supplements. The effects should never be a source of alarm.
Branched chain amino acids can be obtained from regular consumption of meat and eggs, as well as legumes such as cashew nuts, black beans, and groundnuts. Many people assume that BCAAs will help them to be fit as soon as they start taking them. The truth is, without work out and eating whole foods rather than processed foods, as well as taking diet shake, then they can’t be of help.
What are the benefits of BCAAs?
Branched-chain amino acids have so many advantages. First, it promotes little or no exhaustion after a workout since it contains valine which combats tryptophan, another amino acid, that contributes to the feeling of fatigue by producing the serotonin hormone in the brain, which encourages exhaustion.
Second, it enhances the storage of energy in the muscle cells. Carbohydrates, once digested, are changed to glucose, which is the main source of energy for the body. Glucose that isn’t used is changed to glycogen and is preserved in the muscle tissue and liver. Any more glucose is preserved in fat cells. BCAAs encourage storage of glucose in muscle cells, where it’s always quickly accessible whenever it’s needed.
Third, it enhances muscle building, which is a necessity among bodybuilders. The leucine in it acts as a motivator of protein synthesis. It strengthens the chemical signals in the body that tell it to repair and build muscle. Combined with other amino acids, leucine causes the muscle-building process. When used alone, leucine only motivates the body to build muscle.
Finally, it hastens the recovery process. Those who exercise are prone to exercise-related injuries such as muscle soreness. It hinders processes such as catabolism, that is basically the breakdown of muscle tissues. Some of its consequences are its hampering of the growth hormones, suppression of the immune system and encouragement of fatigue which minimizes productivity. Catabolism is mainly caused by excessive training without enough rest and failure to obtain the required amino acids after exercise.
If an individual is suffering from fatigue and exercise-induced injuries, even if they weren’t taking BCAAs before, they can still be of use to them if they take them regularly.
Are there risks associated with BCAAs?
From the evidence above, it’s safe to say that branched-chain amino acids do more good than harm. Taking them has no side effects. As a matter of fact, the only changes that can be noticed are positive ones. They only need to be taken at adequate levels.
If an individual doesn’t have enough money to buy the supplements or if they don’t work out as often as they should, plant and animal products are a perfect source of the amino acids. However, if an individual has a disease such as cancer, is diabetic or is a vegetarian, it is best for them to seek medical advice first before taking BCAAs.