The popularity in the weights room has been growing steadily among fitness aspirants and athletes. In the process, Branched Chain Amino Acids commonly known as BCCAs have gained popularity among the serious sport’s persons supplement chart. BCAAs are not the modern inventions but have been popular since the 1980s.
Most of the people in the quest to increase muscle mass, do not get enough protein for the body. Though they opt for some regular foods like chicken, eggs, steak to get proteins, they might require them more as they reach the different stages of their workout intensity. Most of the people like you have already opted for whey proteins in the diet. But these BCAAs are the individual proteins which are included in the traditional whey proteins.
But what are BCAAs and how are they effective for gym-goers? Well, in a study it is found that BCAAs work effectively for the Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) which is the common symptom of exercise induced muscle damage. And hence it has become more popular for people who are into serious and heavy everyday workout sessions.
So, if you are looking for the best workout relievers or to increase muscle strength, believe me BCAAs are the best choice to make. Below in this blog are the few more details of what BCAAs actually are and how they are effective to you. Prepare to be Convinced!
What are BCCAs?
Before we understand BCAAs, let us give you a brief note on proteinogenic amino acids. These proteinogenic amino acids are generally the building blocks of protein, Leone. There are two different types in these as Essential amino acids, 9 in total and Non-essential amino acids, 11 in total. Non-Essential amino acids are in general synthesized in the body whereas Essential amino acids are to be taken from the foods and supplements of outside. BCAAs are considered as the essential amino acids. The three amino acids include leucine, isoleucine, and valine.
Also Read: Why Amino acids are Necessary for the Body?
When the glycogen stores are low, your body seeks three types of BCAAs (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) for the next source of muscle strength. BCAAs promote muscle strength and repair the muscle soreness caused after the workout. Besides this, the amino acid leucine of BCAAs help feel you more fully improving the sensitivity to hunger hormone, leptin. This also helps in fat loss or fat burning. So, now let us understand how BCAAs work.
BCAAs are the Super Magic Supplements!
When you are prone to intense or normal workouts, you are shredding the calories and energy as a pay for fat loss. But in the process, you also loss muscles as our body uses muscle proteins i.e. Amino Acids as a source of energy. But to build the muscle, protein synthesis is to be greater than the protein breakdown which helps you in retaining the strength. These BCAAs act as the protein synthesis agents and help in controlling the protein breakdown. Thus, supporting you for muscle strength and muscle gain.
Benefits of BCAAs
There are few people or cases in which the need for BCAA supplementation is ignored out of the myth that they are produced in the body and are found in the foods we take. But this may not be sufficient when you require them in large quantities. In the supplement form, BCAAs diffuse speed into the body blood stream and starts regulating the blood sugar levels. BCAAs came up with more benefits than any other supplements in the market. Below, we take you to the 5 of the most pertinent and highly recommended BCAAs. These benefits are applicable to everyone whether you are lifting weights five times a week or undergoing the intense workouts every day.
1. Muscle Hypertrophy (AKA Increased Muscle growth)
Being a regular fitness and diet practitioner, you might have known that a well-rounded diet contains all the essential amino acids required for muscle building. High protein diet like eggs, dairy can be an added advantage to build healthier and stronger muscles. BCAAs acts as the signals to the building blocks of protein synthesis. Among all three amino acids, Leucine is known for its stimulating effects on muscle growth from protein muscle synthesis.
2. Reduces Muscle Soreness
There are proven studies that say BCAAs are the primary sources that help in recovering from the muscle soreness caused by the strenuous workout sessions. Sometimes this soreness may be immediate and sometimes it takes time to reset in the body. When it takes more than a day or two, then it is termed as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). These are formed when the muscles strain and create a tear due to heavy and strenuous workouts. BCAAs with their property of protein synthesis aids in the muscle building and maintains the consistent growth in muscle strength.
3. Limits fatigue
There may be N factors that lead to fatigue in one way or the other. But the fatigue from the intense exercises drains out the energy from the body and keeps the body dull for the whole day(s). BCAAs fight for the fatigue from exercises by delaying the DOMS. In the process, BCAAs acts as the stopping agent of converting tryptophan to serotonin which is the fatigue causing agent in the body. When the serotonin levels in the brain changes, there are chances for fatigue causing the tryptophan to cross the blood-brain barrier. So when the serotine crosses the same barrier where BCAAs are crossing, BCAAs win the battle. Hence it is always advisable to take these supplements before or after workouts.
4. Promotes Weight/Fat Loss
The people who are on a strict diet were put into a calorie restricted diet. When you go with calorie deficit weight loss procedures, there may be chances of muscle tissues being targeted by the body to use them as the fuel to function on activities. Hence BCAAs help them in balancing the calories in the body by helping in building the broken muscle tissues or making the weakened tissues strong. BCAAs are able to spare glycogen and increase the insulin sensitivity speeding up the process of fat loss.
Also Read: How to build fat loss meal plan?
5. Prevent Muscle protein Breakdown
BCAAs along with improving lean mass, protects the muscles from breaking down from strenuous workouts. Muscle proteins are continuously built to maintain the sustainability of the workouts or body strains. Hence consuming the BCAAs supplements aids in speeding up this process suppressing proteolysis and muscle protein breakdown.
Types of BCAAs
Before we opt for any supplement, we first check that the supplement is carry-friendly and digests at ease. This is the reason most people opt for BCAAs. These supplements are in a more convenient form as BCAA tablets and BCAA powder.
BCAA Powder can be mixed in water or in any sports isolated drinks. These fluids flood into muscles and blood extremely quick making the blood to observe it and start functioning in the same short time.
BCAA Capsules are usually not as common as powders. The digestion process of pills is longer than powders. In order to get the accurate amount of dosage, it requires taking a certain quantity of pills which may be not as convenient as powders.
Getting Enough Protein is Key – Rich Sources of Protein
As long as you follow a structured and protein rich diet, supplements can be habituated slowly. But relying on routine foods is difficult for most of the people whereas few people prefer to have common foods rich in all sources of strength and proteins. The common foods rich in proteins are lean Meat, Egg, Milk, Fish, Cheese, Quinoa, Tofu.
For everything you take out of the body, it needs to be restricted as per the body’s acceptance and requirement. Hence there comes the term dosage based on the scenario you take. Lets understand in what way dosage should be applied.
- For Women, 9gms per day is sufficient whereas Men require 12g/day.
- Bodybuilders who are prone to strenuous days, need 35g/day.
- If we consider body weight,
- For 150lbs or less, 3gms of BCAA is required before, during and after training.
- For 151 lbs or more, 5gms of BCAA is required before, during and after training.
Cautions to take BCAA
It is not recommended for pregnant or lactating women to avoid BCAAs.
Avoid BCAAs at least 2 weeks before you are going into any surgeries.
Avoid using these for children, especially of less than 6 months old. Consult the doctor and use if prescribed only.
When to take BCAAs in a day?
Every action and reaction in the body has a saturation point where the actions stop or comes to the rest position. So, a good sign is to take the BCAAs at a regular interval.
BCAAs are preferred before and during workouts to spark muscle building and to reduce fatigue.
BCAAs can also be consumed post workout, to quick retain the lost muscle strength or to recover from the muscle strains.
Take Home message
If you have made it this far, you are now equipped with all the facts and benefits of BCAAs. Probably, now you are clear about who and when and how much is required for you to maintain the muscle strength. It is clear from the above discussion that BCAAs have the therapeutic potential from their protein anabolic effects.