Bodybuilders and athletes often rely on supplements to help them gain an edge on the track or in the gym. While protein supplements, such as whey powder, is commonly preferred among these individuals, it is important not to overlook the fact that some other products may yield even better results. Amino acids would be an excellent example – in fact, amino acids actually make up proteins.
A number of people who are looking to improve their performance have started to turn to EAA supplements and other products that contain amino acids. These supplements often provide specialized results, which means they can yield improved benefits over taking a whey protein powder. We consider what amino acids are and the benefits of these supplements in this post.
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and can provide athletes and any person who needs an improvement in their physical performance a number of potential benefits.
What Are Amino Acids?
Amino acids are considered to be the building blocks of life. These compounds combine to make up protein in humans, animals, and even in plants. There are 20 amino acids that are considered to be exceptionally common, but others also exist. While amino acids are most commonly associated with the production of protein, these compounds play other roles in the body as well, including:
- The production of creatine
- The synthesis of peptide hormones
- The synthesis of certain neurotransmitters
Some amino acids can be synthesized within the human body, but there is a total of nine that we can only obtain from dietary sources, including food and supplements.
The amino acids that need to be consumed include:
Essential amino acids are also found in a number of different food products, many of which are most likely already included in your diet. Some of the food items that are rich in the most important amino acids include:
- Chia seeds
How Do Amino Acids Benefit You?
With the right combination of amino acids, a number of benefits can be expected. While these supplements are becoming quite popular among athletes and those looking to boost their physical performance, there are several advantages that the average person can also enjoy when they turn to such supplements.
Below, we consider some of the most important benefits that can be expected when turning to amino acid supplements.
*Increased Muscle Mass
Amino acids are most commonly used by individuals who want to increase their lean muscle mass. These compounds are able to assist with the production of protein, which plays a critical role in the development of muscle tissue.
One study explains that amino acids help to form appropriate proteins that induce a state of hyperaminoacidemia. This causes the synthesis of skeletal muscle protein to be significantly increased, while also suppressing the breakdown of protein in muscle tissue. This is essentially how the use of amino acid supplements would lead to an increase in muscle growth.
The same study explains that amino acid supplements can also help to ensure skeletal muscle mass can be preserved. The preservation of muscle mass remains active when a person is on a diet that requires a restriction of calorie intake.
Another important benefit to consider is the fact that high intake of amino acids, which leads to a higher amount of protein production, is not associated with gains in fat, but rather only lean muscle tissue.
A study published in the Frontiers in Physiology journal explains that the use of specific amino acid supplements also promotes the synthesis of muscle protein following resistance training.
*Improved Weight Management
Many people do not realize this, but protein is important for weight loss. The use of protein, especially in the broken down version, being amino acids, can help to increase muscle mass and, in the process, reduce body fat content.
Several studies have confirmed the fact that amino acids seems to be beneficial for weight reduction and provides improvements in overall weight management. One study, published in the Journal of Nutrition, looked at the diet habits of various populations. The researchers behind the study found an association between an increased intake of branched-chain amino acids and a reduced risk of obesity and overweight.
In another study, researchers found that an increase in the plasma free concentrations of amino acids among individuals with an existing metabolic syndrome led to a reduction of total body weight and body fat.
*Reduces The Risk Of Mental Fatigue
Mental fatigue is exceptionally common in the general population and is linked to a number of possible causes. People who participate in physical exercises regularly often find themselves experience fatigue both during and following the activity.
The reason why fatigue is often experienced during and following an exercise protocol is due to the synthesis of 5-hydroxytryptamine, also known as 5-HT. The use of amino acids has been shown to reduce the production of this particular compound in the brain. What this essentially means is that using amino acid supplements would yield less mental fatigue and exhaustion during exercise – and any person who is serious about their fitness goals knows that cognitive performance is just as important as their physical abilities during their program.
Another important finding is that amino acid supplements seem to remain beneficial in terms of reducing mental fatigue after a person has finished their workout session. The cognitive impairment that often comes during the post-workout period is not experienced by people who use amino acid supplements to improve their performance during the session.
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and can provide athletes and any person who needs an improvement in their physical performance a number of potential benefits. Understanding what amino acids are and how they work, as well as which ones offer the most benefits, can help you optimize your supplement strategy for maximum results.
Are you including amino acids in your diet?
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