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Amino Acids: Building Blocks of Protein

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Amino Acid Supplements - Building Blocks for Better Health

The human body requires around 22 amino acids, 14 of which can be taken in through a proper daily diet. The remaining 8 can be found through supplementation. They are essential for cell development, tissues repair, immunity, and optimal overall health.

A number of amino acids can be found in foods meats, fruits, and vegetables, but many people do not receive enough amino acids from food sources. Therefore, supplementation is necessary.

Specific amino acid supplements are available for those wanting to target a certain health problem or self-improvement area, but if you're looking for general health benefits, mixed amino acid supplements are available.

Different Types of Amino Acids

Amino acid supplements are available in the L form and D form. The L form is the most common, more active form for most amino acids. While some amino acids are labeled as essential and others as non-essential, all are important for superior health.

Branched-chain amino acids are meant to be used during weight training and are highly bioavailable. They promote the development of muscle protein and may also help reduce muscle breakdown in athletes during intense exercise, while also improving performance.

Precautions

  • Do not use amino acid supplements with MAOIs (certain anti-depressants), as a hypertensive crisis can occur
  • Do not take anti-psychotic medications with certain amino acids (L-Phenylalanine, Tryptophan, and 5-HTP), as the neurotransmitter inhibition of the anti-psychotics mixes with the neurotransmitter replenishment action of the amino acids
  • Always consult a qualified medical practitioner before using amino acid supplements when pregnant
  • Do not use the amino acid L-Phenylalanine if you suffer from panic attacks
  • Always consult a doctor before starting an amino acid supplement regimen, as they protein increase can increase the workload on your kidneys

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Quick Facts

  • Amino acids are the building blocks of protein
  • Necessary for growth and cellular development
  • Essential amino acids and non-essential amino acids
  • Form antibodies to fight bacteria and viruses
  • Useful in weight control, muscle building, proper hormonal activity, and fighting depression