Whether you’re a gym-goer, weightlifter or runner, you’ve likely heard of BCAAs. But what exactly are they and how can supplementation help improve your athletic performance?
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. There are nine essential amino acids that cannot be made by the human body and must be obtained through our diet. Of these, three are the branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs), leucine, isoleucine, and valine.
The body uses these aminos for energy and muscle protein synthesis, and they may also help support weight loss and post-workout recovery. Amazonia's Head Dietitian, Tara Kaff, breaks it down for us.
Why Supplement with BCAAs powder?
It’s important to note that a diet rich in nutrient-dense wholefoods should always be the priority before you look to supplementation. However, when we get them from our food, BCAAs must first pass through the liver before they can be absorbed and utilised in the body. On the other hand, BCAAs powder requires no digestion and can be taken before, during and after your workout to provide rapid support.
Amazonia RawFIT Bio Active BCAAs is packed with electrolytes and formulated with an optimal 2:1:1 ratio of Leucine, Isoleucine and Valine to assist with muscle growth stimulation, preventing muscle fatigue and accelerating recovery. This powerful non-synthetic formula contains hydrating Coconut Water, Calcium and Magnesium for sustained energy, and Nitrates to help direct increased blood flow to the working muscles and increase endurance.
5 Benefits of BCAAs
1. Promotes Muscle Growth
The BCAA Leucine is essential for muscle protein synthesis, which is the process of making muscle. However, your muscles require all the essential amino acids for the best results. Consuming a protein powder such as RawFIT Performance Protein is a great way to support your protein and BCAAs intake. It combines 31g of certified organic sprouted and fermented Brown Rice and Golden Pea protein, Protease for optimal absorption, and 5.5g of naturally occurring plant BCAAs for protein synthesis and endurance.
2. Supports Immune Function
If you’re doing large volumes of high-intensity exercise each week, you could experience fatigue, immune suppression and overtraining if you don’t allow for proper recovery. Long-term supplementation with BCAAs can help support the body’s immune response. Immune cells within the gut use these aminos as a fuel source, helping the immune system regenerate itself more efficiently.
3. Protects Lean Muscle
The body’s glycogen stores are the primary fuel our muscles use for energy production. Supplementing with BCAAs means that when these stores run low, your body will turn to BCAAs for fuel instead of muscle protein. This may be beneficial for those maintaining a calorie deficit as it minimises muscle protein breakdown without a substantial calorie load.
4. Combats Exercise Fatigue
Your muscles use BCAAs during exercise, depleting the levels of it in your blood. This results in a spike in tryptophan in your brain, which may contribute to fatigue during exercise. Supplementing with BCAAs may help inhibit the onset of perceived physical exertion during your workout, as the body uses them as an additional energy source.
5. Reduces Muscle Soreness
It’s not uncommon to feel sore after a hard workout – especially if starting a new exercise routine. Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) occurs about 12-24 hours after exercise and is believed to be the result of the tiny tears exercise causes in our muscles. BCAAs may help decrease muscle damage, reducing the length and severity of DOMS.
Click here to shop Amazonia RawFIT Bio Active BCAAs.
Research surrounding the benefits of supplementing BCAAs is still vague. Amazonia believes that more studies are needed before strong conclusions can be drawn.