BCAAs: you might have heard a lot about them but are still confused as to the relevance of BCAAs in your overall fitness training. Perhaps you are wondering whether they are, in fact, important at all? We’ve teamed up with Scitec Nutrition to give you the low down on the product many athletes swear by.
The three most essential BCAAs, or branched-chain amino acids, which get their name from their molecular structure, refer to leucine, isoleucine and valine. These three amino acids are important, making up 35% of the overall essential amino acids contained in muscle proteins.
The body cannot synthesise all these necessary amino acids itself so must be consumed within a diet. High protein foods naturally contain BCAAs, especially those containing high levels of animal protein such as meat and dairy products.
What Do BCAAs Do?
BCAAs are thought to prevent the loss of skeletal muscle during weight loss. During exercise, the body increases its catabolism, that is its breakdown of protein. It does this so that it can release muscle amino acids for fuel. In addition, the reduction in energy intake then also decreases the levels of muscle protein synthesis. creating a negative protein balance.
Branched-chain amino acids stimulate muscle protein synthesis. This is also known as gains, and is the metabolic process your body undertakes to make new muscle protein.
Another advantage to supplementing your diet with BCAAs is that they reduce the amount of tryptophan that attempts to enter the brain, preventing the rise of serotonin levels which result in you feeling more fatigued during your workouts. By consuming BCAAs you might find your body better able to work harder for longer, and reduce the onset of Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness, or DOMS.
Why BCAA Supplements?
Consumption of BCAAs in the form of supplements is free-form, meaning that unlike those contained within foods, they require no digestion and so are absorbed into the bloodstream more rapidly. As a result, they will begin working straight away.
Each serving is mixed in with water to be consumed before or during a workout, or even throughout the day, in order to increase your body’s essential amino acids.
As part of their new Athletic Line range, Scitec Nutrition have introduced their Athletic Line Electric Aminos supplement. This product contains all 9 essential amino acids including the three important branched-chain amino acids, enabling you get all of these amino acids in one go.
Want to know more about the best fitness supplement recommendations that make a difference? Click here to read more.