5 Unexpected Benefits of BCAA Supplements
Have a hard time recovering from training? Struggling with muscle pain or soreness? If so, BCAAs can help. These supplements speed up recovery and preserve lean mass. This makes them ideal for cutting and intense workouts.
“BCAAs” stands for branched-chain amino acids, namely leucine, valine, and isoleucine, with the first being the most important. Your body cannot produce them on its own, so they must be obtained from food or supplements.
When consumed in optimum doses, BCAAs stimulate muscle growth, prevent catabolism, and ward off fatigue. Their beneficial effects on exercise performance are well-documented.
Need more proof? Check out these unexpected benefits of BCAA supplements:
Prevent Muscle Waste
Let's start with the most obvious benefit before going into details. BCAAs not only promote hypertrophy but also reduce catabolism aka muscle loss.
Exercise depletes your body's BCAA stores, leading to muscle loss and slow recovery. By supplementing your diet with BCAAs, you'll preserve lean mass and last longer in the gym.
That's why these products are so popular among athletes and bodybuilders during periods of intense training and before competitions. In fact, they're often used as a substitute for whey protein.
Reduce Perceived Pain
A diet high in BCAAs will allow you to work out harder for longer periods of time. You'll lift heavier, run faster, and train harder without experiencing excruciating pain and fatigue.
These amino acids stimulate norepinephrine release, which in turn, decreases perceived pain. Furthermore, BCAAs have been shown to reduce the exertion perceived by athletes during training by over seven percent.
Improve Liver and Kidney Health
Many gym goers mistakenly believe that protein, BCAAs, and other supplements put stress on the liver and kidneys. In fact, the opposite is true.
In clinical trials, BCAAs have been found to improve liver function and lower the risk of kidney failure by a staggering 40 percent. In a 2018 study, subjects with liver cirrhosis who took BCAAs experienced major improvements in hypoalbuminemia, glucose sensitivity, and body composition. They also lost fat and retained lean mass.
Prevent Diabetes and Insulin Resistance
Insulin resistance is a major risk factor for diabetes and metabolic problems. BCAA supplementation may help improve insulin response and glycemic control, leading to a lower risk of type II diabetes.
These amino acids improve insulin resistance in several ways. First of all, they help maintain normal blood glucose levels by causing the muscles to take in more sugar from the bloodstream. Secondly, they help reduce body fat levels and increase protein synthesis. High body fat levels contribute to insulin resistance and type II diabetes.
Get a Better Night's Sleep
This may come up as a surprise, but taking BCAAs could be the key to a better night's sleep. Branched-chain amino acids reduce end-tidal CO2 levels and increase REM sleep, helping you catch more Zzz's and wake up refreshed.
As an athlete, you know that proper sleep is just as important as exercise and nutrition. Your body releases testosterone and growth hormone, builds muscle, and repairs damaged tissues at night. Sleep deprivation can throw your hormones out of balance, trigger muscle loss, and impair recovery. Plus, your cortisol levels will skyrocket if you're not getting enough shut-eye.
There are many other unexpected benefits associated with BCAAs. While it's true that you can obtain these nutrients from food, supplements have their role. Their fast absorption rate, high bioavailability, and optimum doses of amino acids ensure superior results in terms of exercise performance.
Make sure you choose a quality BCAA formula to fully reap the benefits. Jumpfire Nutrition BCAAs is proven to reduce muscle fatigue, boost energy levels, and stimulate muscle growth. We've added vitamin B6 in addition to branched-chain amino acids to give you a competitive edge. Try it yourself - it's different than any other formula on the market!