BCAAs or branchd-chain amino acids are a group of three essential amino acids including leucine, isoleucine and valine. Our body is not able to produce them on its own therefore gets them from our diet mostly from the proteins found in food, especially meat, dairy products, and legumes.
BCAA plays a significant role in doing exercise in muscle. In fact, when a person starts doing exercise and cutting down the amount of fat, catabolic process begins at the same time and the lower the fat, the more likely the muscle breakdown.
Body, automatically tries to find the fat supply to produce energy in case it can not access to glycogen. Lack of fat force the body to breakdown the protein to smaller amino acids and use them as an energy supplement.
We all know that protein is a very valuable source and should not be wasted easily.
Muscle mass or muscle loss is not expected when the balance of protein synthesis and protein catabolism is equal and obviously, athletes gain muscle when protein synthesis is more then protein catabolism. intense workouts increases serotonin in body that can cause fatigue so BCAA, can help reduce physical and mental fatigue with enhancing protein synthesis as well as increasing energy.
To be more specific leucine has the biggest impact on your body’s capacity to build muscle proteins while, isoleucine and valine seem more effective at producing energy and regulating your blood sugar levels.
BCAA supplement is the key factor of protein synthesis. As it is mentioned above, leucine enhances protein synthesis and has the biggest impact on body’s capacity to build muscle. BCAA also increases Serotonin with controlling Tryptophan and reduces fatigue during exercise
BCAA or Whey protein?
Many people believe that taking BCAA is useless while they take whey protein. Whey protein also contains branched-chain amino acids but the fact is, when body is on a diet and intensive exercise, it essentially needs to receive amino acids during and after exercise and amino acids existed in whey protein takes 2-3 hours to enter bloodstream. This 2-3 hours is enough to lose the muscle.
So taking BCAA is recommended during mass-gain diet and also cutting phase.
BCAA supplement dosage depends on your individual needs and goals.
“A World Health Organization report from 1985 states that the average adult should consume a minimum of 15 mg of BCAAs per pound (34 mg/kg) of body weight each day (45).”
However, according to more recent research, the daily requirements may actually be as high as 65 mg/lb (144 mg/kg) of body weight per day
Based on these studies, adults could consume:
* Women: A minimum of 9 grams of BCAAs per day
* Men: A minimum of 12 grams of BCAAs per day
However, daily requirements can be higher for athletes and people doing heavy resistance training.
The best time to take BCAA supplements is before and/or after your workout. Many people who are trying to gain muscle also take them in the morning and before bed.
Consuming BCAA before exercise can be beneficial since these types of Aminos go through to muscle cells directly and help metabolism in muscles as well as reducing fatigue.
Consuming BCAA after exercise is also beneficial to athletes since leucine helps muscle mass- gain while goes to muscle cells.