In the pursuit of body positivity, wellness, and overall health and happiness, amino acids have unfortunately been stereotyped as supplements only for gym enthusiasts and athletes, which means many of us overlook the benefits of these supplements.

Amino acids, extensively researched as the building blocks of protein, are crucial not only to our biological functions but also play a vital role in gut health, metabolism, and building muscle and skin tone.

What Are Amino Acids?
Amino acids are organic compounds that form proteins, essential to many physiological processes in our bodies. They contain nitrogen, carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen and are categorized into essential, non-essential, and conditional amino acids. Essential amino acids, which our bodies cannot produce independently, must be obtained through our diets, making them critical components of nutritional health.

What Do Amino Acids Do?
As the building blocks of proteins, amino acids are necessary for constructing muscle, skin, and other body tissues. Beyond their structural role, they are crucial in synthesizing hormones and neurotransmitters, regulating immune function, and facilitating metabolism and energy production.

How Does Supplementing Amino Acids Help the Body?
For those engaged in regular physical activity, amino acids help repair and build muscle tissue, enhance recovery, and reduce muscle soreness. They also support immune function and can improve mood and vitality by influencing neurotransmitter production.

Research indicates that certain amino acids, such as leucine, glutamine, carnitine, and creatine (often grouped as branched-chain amino acids or BCAAs), can significantly impact weight loss and enhance metabolic health. For example, a study published in the Journal of Nutrition demonstrated that BCAAs could increase fat loss and metabolic rate by improving glucose uptake in muscles and enhancing protein synthesis, which leads to more energy consumption and efficient fat burning. Another study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that individuals supplementing with BCAAs experienced improved metabolic health and muscle maintenance during weight loss efforts.

What Are the Most Common and Effective Amino Acids to Supplement?
Understanding the role of amino acids like carnitine, glutamine, creatine, and leucine in body physiology, particularly in muscle function and metabolic health, is essential.

  • Carnitine is known for its role in metabolizing fatty acids, transporting them into mitochondria for energy production. Studies suggest that L-carnitine supplementation can enhance muscle protein synthesis and reduce muscle atrophy. systematic review and meta-analysis of 37 randomized controlled clinical trials with dose-response analysis provides a modest reducing effect on body weight, BMI and fat mass, especially among adults with overweight/obesity.

  • Leucine is effective at promoting muscle protein synthesis, maintaining or increasing muscle mass and strength, and has shown benefits in managing sarcopenia—the loss of muscle strength with aging. For instance, leucine supplementation has been shown to improve lean muscle-mass content in Sarcopenia (this is the loss of muscle and strength that occurs with ageing). 

  • Glutamine, though not directly impacting athletic performance or body composition, plays a role in recovery and immune function, which can indirectly influence health and weight management. According to this meta-analysis, generally, glutamine supplementation has no effect on athletics immune system and aerobic performance; however, the study showed that glutamine resulted in greater weight reduction. The benefits of micro-biome balance and gut health has greater evidence for glutamine, which again aids in weight-loss indirectly but more research is needed.

  • Creatine is renowned for improving strength, muscle mass, and performance, aiding in ATP regeneration crucial for high-intensity activities. Supplementation along side resistant training leads to increased phosphocreatine stores in muscles, enhancing muscle growth. 

These amino acids are included in Be Ultra’s D3B supplement, ensuring a synergistic blend that supports your metabolic rate, aids in fat burning, and promotes muscle growth to combat aging, which in turn increases your metabolic rate.

Conclusion
Understanding and supplementing amino acids can significantly enhance health, particularly in metabolism and muscle maintenance areas, indirectly boosting your metabolic rate—the higher your muscle mass, the higher your resting metabolic rate. Research also suggests that the benefits are more likely to be realized in conjunction with strength training 2-3 times per week. While more research is needed, we have included these four amino acids in Be Ultra's D3B to support your journey towards a healthier, stronger you.

Embrace the journey by integrating these essential nutrients into your daily regimen.

References

  • Journal of Nutrition, "Role of Branched-Chain Amino Acids in Metabolic Health"
  • American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, "Effects of BCAA Supplementation on Muscle Mass and Metabolic Health"
May 11, 2024 — stephanie dowling

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