What is BCAA?

Branched-chain amino acids consist of three essential amino acids; Leucine (Leucine), Isoleucine (Isoleucine) and Valin (Valine). The reason why these amino acids are called essential amino acids is that the body cannot produce these amino acids from other amino acids. Therefore, they must be taken from the outside with the diet.

While they make up the largest part of the body's essential amino acid pool (35-40%), they are also found in high levels (14-18%) in muscle tissue. The content of branched-chain amino acids in the free amino acid pool is low compared to that in body stores (0.1 grams per kilo or 0.6-1.2 mmol per kilo of muscle tissue). The fasting serum concentrations of branched-chain amino acids are approximately 0.3-0.4 mm (they are quite high compared to other amino acids except for glutamine).

Branched-chain amino acids are found in foods containing animal protein. Foods in which they have the highest concentration; chicken, beef, salmon, egg and whey protein. Branched-chain amino acids can also be taken from outside. The supplement method may be more useful for athletes because free forms of branched-chain amino acids bypass the liver and intestinal tissue and directly enter the bloodstream.

As their name suggests, branched-chain amino acids have side chains. This facilitates the conversion of every amino acid to energy in the urgent need of energy. They make up 35% of all muscle tissue. The more branched-chain amino acids found in muscle tissue, the more energy they are used for. Thus, they prevent muscle cells from collapsing and muscle loss.

What does BCAA do? What are the benefits?

1. The use of BCAA is becoming more widespread and the proportion of individuals who will use it increases in direct proportion.

2. The metabolic products released from the metabolism of BCAAs have been identified as a significant indicator in young and middle-aged adults with high muscle mass.

3. It is known that individuals who consume a sufficient amount of essential amino acids, including branched-chain amino acids at each meal, have less visceral waist circumference and more muscle mass.

4. Consumption of branched-chain amino acids increases glucose uptake and insulin sensitivity in healthy individuals. In individuals with diabetes, BCAA consumption may have a supportive effect on other treatment methods, thus improving metabolic markers.

5. Branched-chain amino acids initiate protein synthesis and prevent the destruction of muscle cells.

6. Branched-chain amino acids play an important role in energy production that takes place in muscles during exercise. Therefore, they are generally consumed during training.

7. Branched-chain amino acids bring many positive effects on health. The fact that they are consumed at high rates with diet increases the long-term effects.

8. It has been found that they can reduce muscle pain in intensive and training that can damage muscle mass.

9. They increase motivation for training, especially when fatigue is intense.