What Are the Amino Acid's Functions?

Although essential amino acids can be found in a variety of foods, taking concentrated doses in supplemental form has been associated with a variety of health benefits.

1. Amino acid's function: may help mood

Tryptophan is necessary for the production of serotonin, a chemical that acts as a neurotransmitter in your body. Serotonin is an important regulator of mood, sleep and behavior. While low serotonin levels have been linked to depressed mood and sleep disturbances, several studies suggest that one of the amino acid's functions may help reduce depressive symptoms and improve mood. A review of 11 high-quality studies found that taking 0.14 to 3 grams of tryptophan daily helped reduce anxiety and increase positive emotions in healthy people.

2. Amino acid's function: can improve exercise performance and recovery

Many people take valine, leucine, and isoleucine, the three essential BCAAs, to relieve fatigue, improve exercise performance, and stimulate muscle recovery after exercise. In a small 2017 study, athletes undergoing resistance training were given BCAA at a dose of 0.039 grams per pound of body weight (0.087 grams per kilogram), with a 2:1:1 ratio of leucine, isoleucine, and valine.

The Amino acid powder function was that people taking BCAAs had better performance and muscle recovery and reduced muscle soreness compared to those taking placebo.

A review of eight studies found that taking BCAA was superior to rest in promoting muscle recovery and reducing soreness after strenuous exercise. What's more, another review of nine studies found that taking BCAA helped reduce muscle damage and soreness in active men after resistance exercise. In people who perform high-intensity exercise, taking BCAAs has also been shown to reduce perceived motor rank -- the intensity at which a person feels they are working during exercise.

3. Amino acid's function: may help wound healing and surgery

One of the functions of amino acids may be helpful for people recovering from surgery. A study of 243 patients with pelvic or long bone fractures found that those who received conditional essential amino acids 2 weeks after surgery had lower rates of mortality and medical complications than those who received standard nutrition. A retrospective review of 20 studies found the effect of taking BCAAs in cancer patients undergoing surgery found that those taking BCAAs before and after surgery had reduced postoperative complications due to infection and abdominal fluid accumulation. What's more, taking essential amino acid supplements may help reduce muscle volume loss in older adults recovering from knee replacement surgery, according to the results of a study.

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