Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and are essential for many physiological processes in the body. Some amino acids can be produced by the body, while others must be obtained through the diet.
Supplements providing all or some of the essential amino acids are available and can be useful for people who have increased protein needs or who are unable to meet their protein needs through diet alone.
Here are 5 of the best amino acid supplements:
- Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs)
BCAAs are a group of 3 essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine, and valine. They are some of the most important amino acids for athletes and bodybuilders as they help promote muscle growth and recovery
Creatine is a non-essential amino acid that is synthesized in the liver, pancreas, and kidneys. It is stored in muscle cells and used for energy during high-intensity exercise. Supplementing with creatine has been shown to increase muscle mass and strength.
HMB is a metabolite of the amino acid leucine. It is sold as a stand-alone supplement or as part of a supplement blend. HMB has been shown to help prevent muscle breakdown and can promote muscle growth.
Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the body and is involved in many important processes, including muscle growth and immune function. It is also a popular supplement for gut health.
Arginine is a semi-essential amino acid that is involved in wound healing, immune function, and the production of nitric oxide, a molecule that helps blood vessels relax and widen. Arginine supplements have been shown to improve exercise performance and help with recovery after exercise.
The 6 Best Amino Acid Supplements for Endurance Athletes
Whether you’re a runner, cyclist, swimmer, or any other type of endurance athlete, you know that amino acids are essential for performance. But with so many options on the market, it can be hard to know which amino acid supplement is best for you.
Here are 6 of the best amino acid supplements for endurance athletes, based on science:
Beta-alanine is a non-essential amino acid that’s been shown to improve exercise performance. It does this by increasing the concentrations of carnosine in muscle cells, which acts as a buffer against acid buildup during exercise (1, 2).
This is especially beneficial for endurance athletes, as carnosine has been shown to improve time to exhaustion and decrease perceived effort during exercise (3, 4).
- Branched-Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs)
BCAAs consist of three amino acids – leucine, isoleucine, and valine – and are metabolized differently than other amino acids.
During exercise, BCAAs can be used as an energy source, which helps to delay fatigue (5). They’ve also been shown to decrease perceived effort and improve time to exhaustion (6, 7).
Creatine is a popular supplement among athletes, as it’s been shown to help improve power and performance (8).
It does this by increasing the concentrations of phosphocreatine in muscle cells, which can be used as an energy source during exercise (9).
Creatine has been shown to be especially beneficial for endurance athletes, as it can help delay fatigue and improve time to exhaustion (10, 11).
- Nitric Oxide (NO)
NO is a gas that’s produced in the body and is involved in many different physiological processes.
Supplementing with NO has been shown to improve blood flow and increase the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to muscles (12, 13). This can help to improve exercise performance and delay fatigue.
Caffeine is a popular supplement among athletes, as it’s a well-known ergogenic aid.
It works by increasing the release of catecholamines, which can improve focus and increase alertness (14). Caffeine has also been shown to improve exercise performance, specifically endurance performance (15, 16).
Protein is an essential nutrient that’s needed for the growth and repair of muscle tissue. Endurance exercise can lead to muscle damage, so it’s important to consume enough protein to help with recovery (17).
Additionally, protein has been shown to improve exercise performance and help delay fatigue (18, 19).
So, there you have it – 6 of the best amino acid supplements for endurance athletes. If you’re looking to improve your performance, try incorporating some of these supplements into your training regimen.
The 9 Best Amino Acid Supplements for Overall Health
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and they have a wide range of health benefits. Here are the 9 best amino acid supplements for overall health.
L-carnitine is an amino acid that is involved in energy metabolism. It helps the body to burn fat for energy and has been shown to boost exercise performance.
- Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs)
BCAAs are a group of three amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) that are essential for muscle growth and recovery. They are often taken in supplement form to help increase muscle protein synthesis and reduce exercise-related muscle damage.
L-glutamine is an amino acid that is involved in immune function and gut health. It has been shown to promote healing after exercise and reduce inflammation.
L-arginine is an amino acid that is involved in blood flow and nitric oxide production. It has been shown to improve exercise performance and increase blood flow to muscles.
L-tyrosine is an amino acid that is involved in neurotransmitter production. It has been shown to improve cognitive function and boost dopamine levels.
L-theanine is an amino acid that is found in green tea. It has been shown to improve focus and memory.
L-serine is an amino acid that is involved in nerve function. It has been shown to improve mental performance.
L-cysteine is an amino acid that is involved in detoxification and antioxidant activity. It has been shown to protect against liver damage and improve cognitive function.
- L-Aspartic Acid
L-aspartic acid is an amino acid that is involved in energy metabolism. It has been shown to improve exercise performance.