Whether you’re a professional bodybuilder or just someone who hits the gym regularly for that mental uptick and to possess a ripped body, chances are you have wondered: do BCAAs work, and do you need to include branched chain amino acids in your supplement stack?
BCAAs include isoleucine, leucine, and valine. These, and several other amino acids, are essential for building muscle reserve and maintaining muscle tone. Our body does not produce these vital building blocks by itself and must be supplied through the food we eat. That’s why the fastest way to gain these important building blocks is to use liquid diet supplements.
Your muscle infrastructure demands a variety of proteins and enzymes to perform at peak function. If you’ve ever hit the ‘wall’ when doing an intense and prolonged workout you know how it feels when these enzymes and proteins are being drained from your muscles. A sustained and successful workout on a regular basis depends on quick access to BCAAs to refuel the muscles to get you past that ‘wall’. It’s like driving a car on ‘empty’, when you’re basically still going on fumes alone. BCAAs are the gasoline you pump into your vehicle to keep it running on down the road.
Troy Anderson is a personal trainer who uses NanoHydr8 shooters in his own resistance training, and recommends it for all his clients: “A lot of my clients don’t realize that intense resistance training can actually diminish muscle mass because of the catabolic effect of resistance workouts. As the body strains to replenish electrolytes and protein after an intense workout it will automatically start draining some of the main muscle mass to redistribute elsewhere. That’s why amateur bodybuilders who are not careful can actually become weaker and less athletic looking as they continue to push their resistance routines to the limit. Along with good eating habits, it takes a BCAA supplement to encourage muscles to maintain and then build up mass. Without such precautions, it’s actually possible to starve your muscles instead of building them up!”
Another benefit of BCAAs is their ability to postpone and sometimes lessen muscle soreness after an intense workout. While scientists are still unsure of why this happens, the consensus is building that these particular amino acids restrain the muscle’s neurotransmitters from reporting the full impact of muscle fatigue to the brain. This in turn enhances the ability for endurance training.
Dr. Anders Flemming, editor of the Southern California Health Bulletin, says: “Research shows that ingesting leucine actually helps to repair muscle tissue in athletes. The same goes for anyone who performs an extreme training schedule on a regular basis. While soreness is unavoidable, the deterioration of muscle tissue due to minor injuries and strain can be prevented, or at least minimized, with leucine and the other amino acids found in BCAAs.”
The controlled loss of weight during training is the goal for most people. Anders explains that BCAAs can help achieve this goal by regulating the distribution of fluids in the body on a molecular level. “Sweating out the excess pounds through hard exercise is really counterproductive” says Anders. “You’ll simply drink enough fluids to bring that weight right back as soon as you finish your exercise routine. What you want to lose is actual body mass during a workout. BCAAs inhibit the excretion of too much fluid via the sweat glands, thus making any weight loss much more real and sustainable.” So to answer the question “Do BCAAs work” the answer is yes, not only do they work, but are absolutely necessary.