What are amino acids?

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It’s no secret that protein supplements provide your body with one of its most important tools in the fight to build muscle. If you’ve ever read about the job done by protein drinks and protein bars, you might have seen amino acids mentioned. Ever wondered what these key facets of protein, and therefore thick, rippling muscle, are? It’s time to learn.

Amino acids are often referred to as the building blocks of protein. That is because protein is created of chains of amino acids. Without getting too technical, amino acids are organic compounds found in the body that contain carboxyl and an amino group. These compounds combine to create protein. When protein is used by the body, it is broken back down into amino acids. These amino acids are then sent to different parts of the body to carry out various tasks. One of these is to help build muscle tissue and slow its degeneration.

What are amino acids?

There have been more than 50 amino acids discovered by scientists over the years. However, only 20 of them are used in the body to combine and make protein. In your reading about protein and its benefits, you might have even heard of essential amino acids. There are nine of these that every human needs. They are:

 

  • Histidine
  • Isoleucine
  • Leucine
  • Lysine
  • Methionine
  • Phenylalanine
  • Threonine
  • Tryptophan
  • Valine

 

The thing about essential amino acids is that your body can’t produce them on its own. That means they have to come from the food and supplements you ingest. As long as you maintain a healthy, balanced and varied diet, you should have no problem getting enough of the essential amino acids your body to needs to make an adequate amount of protein.

What are amino acids?

BCAA stands for branched chain amino acids. These supplements can boost your volume of three of the essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine and valine. If you are in the middle of an especially tough training cycle and are worried about your body’s ability to generate enough protein power, grab some BCAA supplements such as Scivation – XTEND BCAAs, Optimum Nutrition Amino Energy, BSN Amino X or BPI Sports Best BCAA.

In addition to keeping your amino acid levels high, adding Quest Bars and Gold Standard 100% Whey by Optimum Nutrition to your supplement routine will also ensure you get the protein punch you need to fuel amazing workout efforts.

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