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What Are BCAA's and How Do They Work Supplements Canada

What Are BCAAs and How Do They Work?

BCAAs or Branched Chain Amino Acids are one of the most popular supplement types in the industry, but for many there are still a lot of questions around them.

Here at Supplement Superstore we don't believe in telling you to take a supplement "just because". We want you to have a solid understanding of what they are putting into their body and why, so today we are going to go over BCAAs and pump up your knowledge on them!

What Are BCAAs?

Graphic red and white blood cells next to each other

BCAAs are made up of 3 essential amino acids: Isoleucine, Leucine, and Valine.

Isoleucine - Helps with energy uptake & preserves protein breakdown.

Leucine - Helps preserve lean mass, increase insulin levels, and most importantly it activates mTOR which promotes muscle growth. This is the king of the BCAAs.

Valine - Helps with muscle maintenance, tissue repair and helps to maintain a proper nitrogen balance within the muscles.

The key word being "essential", which means that your body cannot produce them on its own, and you need to get them from things you ingest. BCAAs can be found in high protein foods, and of course from supplements.

It is recommended that you take 5 to 20 grams of BCAAs per day. Supplementing them comes in handy because a lot of people would have a hard time eating enough whole foods to get the recommended dosage.

How Do BCAAs Work?

Man doing heavy lifting in outdoor gym while lifting barbell

Now for the interesting part - What do BCAAs do? Essentially, BCAAs are the building blocks of protein. To simplify, think of protein as a fully built brick wall and BCAAs as each individual brick. BCAAs help in protein synthesis (aka building muscle) and are very important in helping prevent muscle catabolism (aka muscle breakdown).

BCAAs can be taken at various times throughout the day. A common practice is to mix up a BCAA drink to sip on throughout your workout - especially during workouts that you are fasted for. BCAAs, such as the ANS Performance Quench BCAA, can also be taken throughout the day to keep your muscles saturated with the necessary building blocks to make some serious gains!

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