Amino acids in the form of complex and individual additives occupy a leading position in the world of sports nutrition.
First of all, this is due to the universality of application. They are actively used to grow muscle mass and strength, classes on relief, and endurance.
Today we will find out which amino acids are better suited for muscle growth.
What are amino acids for?
Amino acids are the building blocks that make up a protein molecule. According to various scientific data, their number varies from up to 20 to 23.
There are three types:
- Irreplaceable — 8
- Replaceable — 10
- Conditionally replaceable — 2-4
Essential amino acids are not synthesized by the body on their own and must come daily with food.
Non-essential are made from other amino acids, as well as conditionally replaceable. But the second in various stressful situations may not have time to be synthesized in sufficient quantities.
The primary sources of a large number of amino acids are natural products of animal and plant origin. Read more here.
These substances are involved in almost all metabolic processes in the body.
We will list only those functions that are important when doing bodybuilding:
- Actively involved in the synthesis of certain anabolic hormones (for example, insulin and growth hormone)
- Amino acids are the building material for muscle growth
- It can act as an additional source of energy, especially when performing intense power loads
- Accelerate recovery during training (ultra-urgent recovery)
- Prevent the destruction of muscle tissue (anti-catabolic function)
Types and forms of release
Certain amino acids for muscle growth, BCAA, and amino acid complexes in the sports nutrition market.
Certain types (L-glutamine, methionine, L-carnitine, beta-alanine, and others) are used to solve specific sports problems.
For example, Beta-alanine and Citrulline help improve blood supply in the muscles. Therefore, they are used during the period of pump loads.
L-carnitine bodybuilders often take when training on the relief as a soft lipotropic, a fat burner.
Complex species contain all 20 amino acids and have a broad spectrum of action. Their only drawback is a minor concentration in one serving.
For example, the supplement in the form of a separate BCAA contains in one serving 5 grams of BCAA, and in a portion of the complex, there are only 2-3 grams.
Forms of release are diverse:
- effervescent tablets
Powdered amino acids cost the least and are quickly absorbed. The main disadvantage is the inconvenience in use (they must be diluted with water), mainly if the supplement is used outside the home (for example, in the gym).
The tablets are easy to take and have a neutral taste. This is because of the minuses – a slightly higher price compared to the powder. And very often – the large size of one tablet, which is difficult to swallow without biting.
Capsules are devoid of a lack of tablets and have a standard form. They are taken conveniently; besides, thanks to the shell, they are better absorbed (compared to tablets).
Among the disadvantages – the highest price of all forms of release and the low concentration of the substance per capsule.
Liquid amino acids are available in two forms:
- in capsules for a one-time reception
- in bottles with a large number of servings
Of the advantages – ease of use and a high degree of assimilation
Of the minuses – single portions are pretty expensive. And bottles with a large number of shares are capricious in storage after opening. They are kept only in the refrigerator. The shelf life of an open bottle is not more than two weeks.
Effervescent tablets or powder are a relatively new form of release that is becoming increasingly popular.
As you can see, each form of amino acid has both advantages and disadvantages. But the degree of assimilation in them is almost the same.
Therefore, when choosing, as a rule, they are guided by the convenience of reception and the price factor.
The Best Amino Acids for Muscle Growth
Now let’s determine the best amino acids that help increase muscle volumes.
It is logical to assume that these will be complex additives. After all, in their composition, all the amino acids somehow affect muscle growth. However, the concentration of necessary substances in them is small.
To achieve a pronounced anabolic effect from taking complex amino acids, you need to use sufficiently high dosages that exceed the recommended ones by 2-3 times.
For example, instead of 8-10 grams, which advice taking according to the instructions, the actual working dosage will be 15-20 grams per day.
This is due to the high cost of raw materials. For greater availability to a wide range of consumers, manufacturers slightly underestimate the daily dose. It turns out that the price of one such jar is quite acceptable, but the amount of necessary substances in grams is lame.
Many serious bodybuilders use whey protein instead of complex options. It has the same amino acid composition and speed of absorption, but the price is much less.
The practice of bodybuilding shows that it is BCAA that has the best effect in building muscle mass.
Here, the recommendations of manufacturers coincide with the actual working dosages – 10 grams per day.
And the best combination for muscle growth will be whey protein (a source of complex amino acids) and BCAA.
Top 5 Best BCAAs
The BCAA amino acid rating changes every year. But in the top five, there are always the same brands:
- BCAA Powder 12000 from Ultimate nutrition
- AminoX from BSN – these are exactly those “fizzes” that are gaining increasing popularity.
- BCAA Xplode by Olimp Labs
- BCAA 1000 caps by Optimum nutrition
- BCAA+B6 by BioTech USA
We do not rank them by numbers since any of these firms are worthy of the first place.
Amino acids for muscle growth are taken according to the scheme described below to achieve the desired result.
Who needs it
If you are a beginner working on a set of muscle mass, then protein or gainer is more suitable for you.
The only option for taking amino acids among beginners is people with an endomorphic body type, prone to fullness.
The use of a gainer is contraindicated for them because of the high probability of accumulation of excess fat. But of the protein supplements, endomorphs are more suitable for low-calorie protein, complex amino acids, and BCAA.
The use of amino acids is advisable already at an intermediate and advanced level of training.
More intense power loads, which are practiced here, require better recovery of the body. This is where the additional intake of these supplements helps.
When and how much
BCAA is best taken according to the following scheme:
- One serving (5-10 grams) 15-20 minutes before training
- Another one during exercise, or immediately after the end
- On rest days, one portion is recommended in the morning on an empty stomach, the second – during the day
Complex amino acids are distributed into 2-4 equal portions and taken during the day for 4-5 grams at a time. This helps keep them high in the blood all day.
If the stomach reacts calmly to this supplement, it is better to use it on an empty stomach between meals.
If taking on an empty stomach causes discomfort (this is rare, but it happens), use them after eating.