Benefits of amino acid supplements: Protein Building Blocks
Nowadays, supplements are available for all the possible nutrients available in our diet. However, the most important ingredient has been proteins for a long time. Protein has been taken as a supplement in many different forms, such as whey, etc. However, it must be noted that these proteins are made up of amino acids. When proteins are ingested, they are broken down to give amino acids, which are then rearranged, refolded, and turned into whatever is necessary for the functioning of the body. However, several amino acids are used in unique ways and when these amino acids are given as supplements, they can incredibly help the functioning of our body.
All About Amino Acid Supplements
Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins and play a vital role in many bodily functions. Supplementing with specific amino acids can provide several health benefits. One of the most basic and most important reasons for consuming amino acid supplements has to do with muscle growth. It has been shown that leucine, in particular, is capable of regulating and improving the protein synthesis in the muscle after an exercise. The muscle gets stimulated by the stress of the workout, and the consumption of leucine gives the muscle everything necessary for its growth and prepares the muscles for the next workout.
Amino Acids Support Glycogen Stores and Metabolic Functions
Glycogen depletion is one of the major problems for athletes as it leads to exhaustion and also brings an immediate drop in their performance. A study was performed with 7 male volunteers, which put them through a workout that could completely destroy their glycogen stores. One group was given amino acid supplements while the other was given a placebo, and it was shown that the first group had its glycogen stores so well protected that an increase of 17.2 percent was seen in the time they took to hit the wall.
Amino acid supplements are also capable of keeping you away from any kind of mental fatigue that can result from a workout. When the levels of branched-chain amino acids in your body reduce, tryptophan is produced, which converts to serotonin in the brain, causing tiredness. The amino acid supplements prevent this procedure, thereby preventing fatigue.
Muscle Growth and Exercise Recovery
Leucine stimulates muscle protein synthesis, helping rebuild and repair muscle tissue after exercise. It also helps regulate blood sugar levels, providing the muscles with a steady supply of energy.
Isoleucine and valine also support muscle growth and reduce exercise-induced muscle damage and fatigue. Together, these three branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) promote muscle endurance and aid post-workout recovery.
Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the body. It helps maintain muscle mass and boosts the immune system. Glutamine supplements can help lessen muscle soreness and rebuild glutathione levels after intense exercise.
Brain Function and Mood
Tyrosine is needed to produce dopamine and norepinephrine, neurotransmitters that regulate mood, motivation, and focus. Tyrosine supplements can enhance cognitive performance and improve mood under stressful conditions.
Tryptophan is converted to serotonin in the brain. Serotonin influences sleep, appetite, and overall sense of well-being. Tryptophan supplements can boost serotonin levels, help improve sleep quality, and relieve anxiety and depression.
Acetyl-L-carnitine provides energy to brain cells, improves alertness and focus, and supports nerve health. It has been shown to benefit memory and slow age-related mental decline.
Immunity and Gut Health
Glutamine helps maintain the health and integrity of the intestinal wall. It can reduce leaky gut symptoms and intestinal inflammation.
Arginine stimulates the production of nitric oxide, which boosts immune function and blood circulation. It helps wounds heal faster and can reduce inflammation.
Overall, strategic use of amino acid supplements can enhance exercise performance, support muscle growth, improve brain function and mood, boost immunity, and promote gut health. They are generally well-tolerated and safe when taken as recommended.