If you happen to have an interest in health, sports, and fitness, then there’s a very strong chance that you will have seriously considered using health and/or sports supplements as a way of not only improving your physique, but also of improving your athletic performance and your health and well-being too. The sports supplement industry is worth billions upon billions every single year, and is one of the most competitive and lucrative industries on the face of the earth. As far as popular sports supplements go, you have your whey proteins, your creatines etc, but in recent years BCAA’s have proved extremely popular, especially amongst athletes and bodybuilders.
What are BCAA’s?
BCAA’s or, Branched Chain Amino Acids, are not vitamins or minerals, they are amino acids and are the main building blocks of protein molecules. There are numerous types of amino acids, with each one having its own unique function and purpose, and BCAA’s are no different. BCAA’s are made up of three separate amino acids, and they are Leucine, Valine, and Isoleucine.
Leucine – Leucine is an essential amino acid, which basically means that the body cannot naturally synthesize it, so it must come from foods or supplements instead. It is actually the only form of protein that directly contributes towards protein synthesis, making it ideal for post-workout recovery.
Isoleucine – Isoleucine is also a form of essential amino acid that helps our bodies to use fatty acids and ketones, essentially allowing us to metabolise fat molecules and use them for energy.
Valine – Valine is especially useful because it can be broken down by the body and converted into glycogen to be used as energy for the body, especially when carbohydrate levels are naturally low.
What are some of the main benefits of BCAA’s?
There are numerous benefits of BCAA’s, especially from a exercising standpoint. Some of the main benefits include:
• People who regularly consume BCAA’s are often found to possess less visceral belly fat than average.
• BCAA’s have been proven to prevent the breakdown of muscle tissue and to help promote new and healthy muscle growth due to protein synthesis.
• They help to increase recovery following a workout.
• They have been found to improve mental focus and stamina.
• They play key roles in energy production, being converted into glycogen to be used as a primary energy source when natural reserves are running low.
So are they really worth it?
Branched Chain Amino Acids are one of the most popular forms of supplement in the bodybuilding and fitness community, and it’s no wonder why. They’re ideal when it comes to intra and post-workout nutrition, helping aid in energy production, and muscle growth and recovery, and for that reason they come very highly recommended indeed.