Branched Chain Amino Acids
The branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) are amino acids having aliphatic side chains with a branch (a carbon atom bound to more than two other carbon atoms). Among the proteinogenic amino acids, there are 3 BCAAs; valine, leucine and isoleucine.The BCAAs are among the nine essential amino acids for humans, accounting for 35% of the essential amino acids in muscle proteins and 40% of the preformed amino acids required by mammals. So the importance to a person working out or doing strenuous exercise cannot be over estimated.
BCAAs have been used clinically to aid in the recovery of burn victims.A recent study suggested that the reduction in blood BCAAs may be associated with improvement in blood sugar regulation. Another recent study suggests genetic mutations in some autism models lead to altered branched chain amino acid pathways that might be normalized with dietary supplementation.
Leucine, also affect the pathway, signaling two regions of the brain. These signals decrease food intake and increase basic metabolic rate. These results led to a nutraceutical method for controlling weight gain in humans while sparing. The potential of nutrients to signal changes in metabolism is exemplified by how BCAAs may increase muscle repair. As a athlete you know how important muscle repair is.
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