BCAA, amino acids

What Are BCAAs And How Do They Work?


If you want to be fit and healthy, first you have to consider what these four letters BCAAs are. There are approximately 20 different amino acids. These amino acids make up the thousands of different proteins in the human body. Nine out of these 20 acids can not be made by your body, and they must be obtained through your diet. They are known as essential amino acids. Of these essential amino acids, there are three BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids). These branched-chain amino acids are known as leucine, isoleucine and the valine.

Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are named so because of their chemical structure. They are found in protein-rich foods for example eggs, meat and dairy products. Moreover, it is a popular dietary supplement that is sold particularly in powder form and is named as BCAA powder.

If you’re really getting serious about your fitness, then you are at the right place, reading the right article. This article highlights that how branched-chain amino acids, or BCAAs, have inevitably come up in conversations about building muscles and boosting gains. Just go through the article to check what BCAAs are and how do they work.

What are BCAAs?

The branched-chain amino acids are the most beneficial and effective supplements in any sports nutrition program. They are a group of three essential amino acids and that are:

  • Leucine
  • Isoleucine
  • Valine

These amino acids are mostly metabolized in skeletal muscle instead of the liver. They play a very important role in making glucose in your body. They also help the body to maintain blood sugar levels. This is because they are continuously released from the liver as well as other internal organs to skeletal muscles. Having an appropriate amount of these branched-chain amino acids in the body can help improve glucose uptake as well as insulin sensitivity in healthy people. If you work out in a fasted state or if you are on a calorie restricted diet, you will be glad to know that these essential amino acids produce a large portion of blood sugar during the workouts.

How do BCAAs work?

During fitness training, branched-chain amino acids or BCAAs fuel your skeletal muscles. This definitely gives you the edge that you really need to push your limits. Glycogen is the primary fuel your muscles use for energy production and supplementing with BCAAs helps preserve your stores of glycogen. It means that while you work out, your body has a reliable energy source to tap into which can keep you going. Moreover, if your body has abundant glycogen stores, it will keep your body from breaking down muscle protein for energy. Thus, branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are very important for your muscles because they help sustain and safeguard them. It means you have more energy, more reps, and more gains!

Following points explain how BCAAs work.

  • BCAAs Increase Muscle Growth

BCAAs increase muscle growth by activating a certain pathway in the body. It stimulates muscle protein synthesis, which is the process of making muscle. According to recent reports, there are many people who consumed a drink with 5.6 grams of BCAAs after their resistance workout. Such people have a 22% greater increase in muscle protein synthesis as compared to those who consumed a placebo drink.

  • BCAAs Reduce Exercise Fatigue

Just as BCAAs may help increase muscle growth, they may also help to decrease the exercise fatigue. During workout or exercise, your muscles use BCAAs that cause levels in your blood to decrease. In this way, you can have an improvement in exercise performance.


All the points mentioned in this article will definitely help you to understand that BCAAs can help protect your muscles against the catabolic effects of dieting. They are, in fact, the most beneficial and effective supplements in any sports nutrition program.


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