There are around 20 different amino acids our bodies need to function and stay healthy.
Often nicknamed ‘the building blocks of muscle’, amino acids can be split into two main categories:
1. Essential amino acids
They can’t be produced by the body itself, so you have to gain essential amino acids through your diet, particularly food like eggs, poultry and red meat. Out of the 20 amino acids your body needs, only nine of them are essential.
2. Non-essential amino acids
These are the opposite of essential amino acids and can be made by the body itself. Nevertheless, some non-essential amino acids – known as conditionally-essential amino acids – can be lost if you exercise intensely or when you are sick.
You might have heard of branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) or seen them on the packets of some protein powders. They’re made up of three essential amino acids:
These are popular ingredients in a lot of supplements and are designed to boost muscle growth and improve overall fitness performance.
If you’re considering taking amino acids supplements to help boost your fitness performance or increase muscle mass, you’ll typically consume them either as tablets, a powder or in a bar before, during or after you exercise. Read the packet of your chosen supplements closely to see when the optimum time to eat, drink or swallow them is.
The amount of amino acids you take will vary depending on your individual goals and needs, as well as your chosen supplement. If you’re unsure whether they’re right for you or about the correct dosage, speak to a healthcare or fitness expert for tailored advice.
While it’s best to obtain all the amino acids you need naturally through food, it can be beneficial to take supplements if you have specific fitness goals. Speak to a medical professional if you have any further queries and always read the ingredients and dosage recommendations if you decide to start taking one of our amino acids supplement.
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Last updated: 20 March 2020Sourceshttps://www.healthline.com/nutrition/essential-amino-acids https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/body-building-sports-supplements-facts/ https://www.bulkpowders.co.uk/the-core/a-beginners-guide-to-amino-acids/