Branched Chain Amino Acids have been a staple amongst the supplementation regime of both beginner and high performance athletes due to their powerful capabilities.
Branched Chain Amino Acids or simply BCAA’s are crucial chemical compounds that the human body utilizes in order to promote several key functions including the almighty protein synthesis process. Naturally found in diverse food groups like chicken, beef and legumes, Branched Chain Amino Acids are widely used in the medicinal field to treat severe diseases such as ALS, Lou Gehrig’s and several brain conditions.
It’s really interesting to say the least that all of the supplementation knowledge that we currently have has been directly influenced by different medicinal fields ranging from traditional medicine and up to alternative or even herbal.
Let’s talk about the main subject which is the science behind Branched Chain Amino Acids. It’s worth mentioning that by science we are talking about how the supplement works for athletes and not how the BCAA’s function within the human body so if you’re a bodybuilder, swimmer, football player or any sort of athlete, you’re in the right place.
What are they?
Branched Chain Amino Acids are basically just that, amino acids that are found in diverse food groups including meats, eggs, dairy and some legumes. Branched Chain Amino Acids are made up of three compounds which are the following: L-Leucine, L-Isoleucine and L-Valine.
Even though they aren’t naturally produced by the human body they are still needed in order to promote basic functions such as recovery and muscle building while reducing muscle breakdown. Even though Branched Chain Amino Acids are widely used in the Bodybuilding field they can also be greatly beneficial for any type of athlete, male or female, who is looking to improve their performance.
The importance of Branched Chain Amino Acids
It’s pretty funny to think that maybe only a decade or so ago BCAA’s were seen as irrelevant in sports nutrition. Let’s be honest, the supplement industry has always revolved around marketing protein powders, thermogenic pills and pre-workout but now things have changed just a little and (powerful but) less popular products that have been around for quite some time are (just now) making waves.
Branched Chain Amino Acids have been around for quite some time now but they have only been gaining speed and popularity just recently. Many of this can be attributed to the lack of scientific studies or to the untapped marketing potential that can be obtained from these magical nutrients.
If you do any sort of research on reputable websites like Men’s Fitness or Bodybuilding.com you will find similar information on how Branched Chain Amino Acids work. To resume it and put in a simple manner, BCAA’s promote the body’s protein synthesis, building muscle, preventing muscle breakdown and accelerating recovery times.
BCAA’s and Supplementation
It’s not just us that share the opinion that Branched Chain Amino Acids need to be introduced into a supplementation regime in order for it to be complete. The younger crowd of bodybuilders and athletes tends to focus on gaining muscle or losing fat and while there’s no denying that this is the key to building a good looking and performing physique, there’s a lot more to it than meets the eye.
Branched Chain Amino Acids are used by world class bodybuilders during or after their workouts by enabling their body to build muscle and repair damaged tissue as fast and effectively as possible. Looks count but performance is all that more important, think about it, if you heal quicker you can train more frequently, this translates into improved hypertrophy and accelerated muscle building.
If you have the opportunity to incorporate Branched Chain Amino Acids into your supplementation you might want to consider it as they can be mixed or “stacked” perfectly with other types of products ranging from creatine to whey protein and everything in between. When it comes down to its consumption some bodybuilders like to mix them with water and drink them during their cardio, intra-workout or even post-workout for instant recovery.
1 – WebMD, (2016), “Branched-Chain Amino Acids”, Consulted on January 15th 2016 from: http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-1005-branched-chain%20amino%20acids.aspx?activeingredientid=1005
2 – Freedman, Lisa, (N.A), “Supplement Guide: Branched-Chain Amino Acids”, Consulted on January 15th 2016 from: http://www.mensfitness.com/nutrition/supplements/supplement-guide-branched-chain-amino-acids
3 – Norton Layne, (2016), “BCAAs: The Many Benefits of Branched-Chain Amino Acid Supplements”, Consulted on February 15th 2016 from: http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/bcaas-the-many-benefits-of-amino-acids.html