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Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are known as the building blocks of protein and they’re crucial if you’re looking to kick-start your recovery, increase protein synthesis, prevent muscle breakdown and reduce overall muscle soreness. BCAAs account for approximately 35-40% of the dietary essential amino acids (EAAs) in body protein and about 15-20% of the total amino acids in muscle. They are then broken down in muscle when we put our bodies through intense endurance based or resistance training. Supplementing with BCAAs during and around your workout can have the following benefits:
– Enhance Muscle Protein Synthesis: Combining BCAAs with resistance exercise results in maximal protein synthesis because they both trigger something called the mTORC1 signalling pathway that is essential for muscle growth.
– Increase Fat Burning and Support Fat Loss: It’s been shown that people with a higher BCAA intake in their diets have less body fat, more muscle and better body composition, as they increase fat burning and glucose tolerance to keep you lean and your metabolism burning.
– Enhance Endurance Performance and Decrease Fatigue: BCAAs can be burned as energy to maintain ATP levels during glycogen-depleting exercise, as well as preventing central fatigue of the nervous system by inhibiting the uptake of tryptophan into the brain. Tryptophan is used to make serotonin in the brain, which increases tiredness and fatigue.
– Prevent Muscle Loss: Supplementing with BCAAs will prevent catabolism by improving the overall energy pool so that amino acids aren’t released from muscle tissue and muscles aren’t broken down for fuel. This makes them a no brainer to support performance in endurance sports or during an intense workout.
If you haven’t added BCAAs to your workouts then you are missing out on some incredible muscle recovery and protein synthesizing growth!