What are the Benefits of BCAAs(branched-chain amino acids)?

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We all know that to get stronger and faster there’s no other alternative way than training and hard work. However, that does not stop a fitness enthusiast from looking for an edge and wondering if special dietary supplements could light a fire under our feet (give us the right amount of energy to meet all our boy goals). You must have probably heard about BCAAs, or branched-chain amino acids supplements at the gym, or maybe heard of pro athletes using them. But what are these supplements exactly used for and should you be consuming them? We are here to tell you A to Z about BCAA supplements and their exclusive benefits.

What is BCAA?

Let us first know about amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. The amino acids help our body to build muscles, repair damaged muscles, and regulate the immune function. There are in total 21 amino acids, and out of which nine are essential and the rest are non-essential amino acids. Essential amino acids are those amino acids which your body cannot produce on its own but are needed to live a healthy life.

BCAAs or branched-chain amino acids contain three specific types of essential amino acids, which inhibits muscle protein breakdown and aids in glycogen storage. The three essential amino acids include leucine, isoleucine, and valine. The branched-chain amino acids make up about 35% of our muscle mass.

What are the food items which contain BCAA?

Here are few food source that contains BCAAs:

  • Milk products like cheese, whey, etc.
  • Meat sources such as beef and chicken.
  • Fishes like wild salmon, tilapia, etc.
  • Soy proteins
  • Eggs
  • Cereals, pulses and seeds such as brown rice, pumpkins seeds, lentils, whole wheat, and corn.
  • Nuts like chickpeas, almonds, and cashew nuts.
  • Baked beans.

What are BCAA supplements?

The BCAA supplements are a recovery formula which is packed with the goodness of leucine, valine and isoleucine, mixed in proper ratios.

There are mainly two types of BCAA supplements available in the market:

  • BCAA 2:1:1 - These supplements contain two parts of leucine and one part each of valine, and isoleucine.
  • BCAA 8:1:1 - The BCAA supplements consists of eight parts of leucine and one part each of isoleucine and valine respectively.

If your regular diet is not sufficient, then you can always opt for dietary supplements like BCAA protein powders.

What are the benefits of consuming BCAA supplements?

There are a lot of BCAA uses and consuming them regularly can help fitness enthusiasts get the desired physique within a short period of time. Here are some of the benefits of consuming BCAA supplements:

  • The BCAA supplements helps in increasing the strength of your muscles.
  • Excellent support which supports muscle growth by ramping up the protein synthesis process in the muscles.
  • The BCAA supplements contain active ingredients which help in muscle pump to enhance the transportation and absorption of nutrients to muscles under repair. Therefore, it helps in quick recovery of muscles post a strenuous workout.
  • Consuming BCAA supplements help in maximizing the body’s anabolic state and preventing catabolism
  • The BCAA supplements help in reducing hunger pangs and management of weight
  • The BCAA supplements contains electrolytes which help in maintaining electrolyte and water balance in the body during workout to prevent dehydration
  • The BCAA supplements help in preserving lean muscle mass
  • Consuming BCAA supplements helps in reducing soreness in muscles and preventing the onset of fatigue
  • The BCAA supplements when consumed regularly can help in maintaining the energy level of your body by producing adenosine triphosphate (ATP).
  • The BCAA supplements can maintain the glucose level of your body and boost your energy level.

What are the best brands for buying BCAA supplements?

There are a lot of brands that offer quality BCAA supplements which include Ultimate Nutrition, Scivation Xtend BCAA, MuscleBlaze, Optimum Nutrition, Protein Scoop, GNC, Muscle XP MusclePharm to name just a few. If you are someone who is into bodybuilding or strict workout regimes, then you must consider consuming these BCAA supplements from any top brands. You could easily find all these BCAA supplements and other products like vitamins & supplements and gym accessories such as amino tablets, vitamin tablets, dumbbells, vitamin c capsules, etc, from HealthKart.

How and when to consume BCAA supplements?

Mix one scoop of BCAA powder with about 200ml of water or low fat milk or any cold beverage of your choice. Shake it well before consuming.

When to consume: For best results, try to consume the branched-chain amino acid supplement twice daily. You can have them once between meals and another shake just after a rigorous workout session. If you are a bodybuilder, then you can mix two scoops of this supplement.

What are the side effects of consuming BCAA?

If you are worried about the BCAAs side effects, then you will be happy to know that there are no major side effects of consuming BCAA supplements, if consumed in limited quantities. However, if the supplement is consumed in larger quantities than what is mentioned or suggested by your then, it can cause headaches, fatigue, loss of coordination, nausea, and increased insulin resistance.

Precaution: There are a lot of BCAAs benefits but if you are under medication, having surgery, pregnant or lactating, then you should avoid consuming them for a period of time or it is better to seek the advice of a doctor.

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