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Nutrition & Diet

What is BCAA? And Why should you use it

BCAA supplements are extremely popular in the fitness and body building industry for boosting protein synthesis during and after the training sessions. BCAA are useful to gain muscular mass, especially when one opts for calorie-deficit diet routine. But, some people are sceptic towards taking supplements.

Well, taking supplements is not wrong. It is more or less same as people, who live in cold countries, need to take vitamin D supplement, or the vegetarians need to take vitamin B12 supplement. Same way, people willing to have a muscular physique, precisely abs, can take the supplements like BCAA to regulate the growth of their muscles.

So, What is BCAA?

BCAA is basically a branched chain amino acid. Amino acids are the organic compounds of carbon and nitrogen. A large portion of our body (cells, muscles, and tissues) is made up of amino acids and the proteins that we take from our food, helps in building amino acids. The branched chain amino acids or BCAA refers to three amino acids- leucine, isoleucine, and valine. They help in the protein synthesis within our body.

BCAA are more popular in the fitness industry because they assist in muscle protein synthesis which eventually leads to the growth of the muscles. It is also taken by people who wish to put on weight. But BCAA are useful for the athletes and sports persons as well to prevent fatigue.

Ideally, a healthy human being requires 1- 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of their body weight per day. For example, if your body weight is 80 kg, then you require 80-120 grams of protein in your diet per day.

Related Article: Daily Protein Requirement: How much Protein you need per Day?

Lack of protein in the body cannot sustain the workouts and will lead to fatigue over a short exercise. In order to comply with the protein requirements; one can always opt for BCAA supplements. And not necessarily bodybuilders or 6 pack abs builders, but also men and women can have prescribed amount of BCAA supplements in their diet routines.

When we workout, our body consumes the tissues. In other words, exercising leads to burning fats, muscles, etc, rather than creating them because while exerting, the body uses the amino acids. The same amino acids would otherwise help in protein synthesis for building the muscles. So, to build the muscles, the rate of protein synthesis must be greater than the rate of protein breakdown.

This is why it becomes essential for the athletes and bodybuilders to take the protein supplement. The protein supplement can be taken as BCAA powder or tablets.

Related Article: The Many Benefits of a BCAA Supplement

What is BCAA Supplement?

BCAA
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Let’s take an example to understand this.

When you suffer from dehydration, then the simplest approach to balance energy is to take ORS solution. What it does is- it refills the salts requirement in your body.

Same way, while working-out; we need to provide ample protein to balance the physique. This combination of amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) that are taken externally i.e. not directly from the food, are the BCAA supplement.

The BCAA supplement help in increasing glucose uptake into cells, and hence improving muscle protein synthesis. Apart from the regular diet, the people who workout and athletes need extra protein to stay in pace with the exertion that their body goes through.

The BCAA supplements helps in two ways- first, increasing the protein synthesis and second, reducing protein breakdown while exercising. This stimulates the growth of muscles, i.e. regular intake of BCAA supplements can help the body-builders or the fitness enthusiasts to build their muscles and 6 pack abs faster than usual.

What is BCAA Powder made from?

The BCAA powder is a combination of three essential amino acids viz Leucine (50%), iso-Leucine (25%), and valine (25%).

What is BCAA used for?

Apart from stimulating the muscle growth, the BCAA are useful for-

  • Reducing tiredness, which can significantly increase the workout efficiency
  • Reducing muscle soreness while intense workout sessions
  • BCAA supplements are essentially helpful for people over 35 years of age to boost the amount of muscles they can build

Related Article: BCAA vs Amino Acids: What is the Difference?

What is the Best BCAA?

The best BCAA supplement is the one that helps in preventing muscle breakdown (catabolic activity) while workout and assists in building muscles (anabolic activity).

It is important to get the same nutrition in every dose. According to me, one such BCAA supplement is MyFitFuel’s BCAA 5000. It is a perfect blend of only the required amino acids (Leucine: 2500 mg, Iso-leucine: 1250 mg, and valine: 1250 mg in every 5 gm serving) in definite proportion. And it comes at such an affordable price of only Rupees 1699 for 5000 mg of packet or 50 servings.

What is the Best way to take BCAA Supplement?

It is important to take the supplement in proper amount because access of anything is bad. One should not replace the regular diet with the supplements. BCAA powder can be taken in 5 gram doses, 2-4 times daily, depending on the amount of your workout and body requirement. They can be consumed in the following ways-

  • Pre-workout to assimilate enough protein to avoid breaking muscles
  • During training to avoid or recover fatigue
  • Post workout to help with muscle soreness

So Folks, I hope you now have the clarity with BCAA supplements and why it is required with the workouts.

The comment section is open for your queries.

Here is a thing, when people opt to become vegan, how do you think they could cover their body’s protein requirement?

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Arushi Dutta

The author Arushi Dutta

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