Boca Health


Branch-Chain Amino Acids are Key to Muscle Growth


Of the ten essential amino acids, three are considered the most important to the development of muscle tissue. Leucine, isoleucine, and valine are known collectively as branch-chain amino acids (BCAAs), and are regarded as the building blocks of the body. Without these three amino acids, molecular growth of any kind cannot occur. In other words, the body cannot produce muscle tissue, fat, or any other molecule without the presence of BCAAs.

The greatest benefit of BCAAs is their contribution to muscle growth. Six different amino acids are utilized by muscles to create energy, but of those six, the three BCAAs provide the highest metabolic potential. During strenuous exercise, the body actively produces new muscle tissue to replace the tissue being broken down. Among the three BCAAs, leucine is considered most the important; it contains HMB, a metabolite capable of increasing muscle mass and inhibiting muscle degradation. The three BCAAs also contribute to weight loss by converting fat into energy during exercise.

It is important to note that BCAAs are essential amino acids, meaning they are not produced by the body, though they are required by it. Various studies have determined that consuming 5 to 12 grams of BCAAs daily can significantly increase muscle growth, while speeding up recovery after exercise. Small quantities of BCAAs can be found in many foods, such as chicken, eggs, soy, and fish, but shakes can be taken to guarantee proper daily servings. The Boca Health Protein Shake provides an adequate serving of BCAAs along with all other essential amino acids. In fact, the Boca Health Protein Shake contains more amino acids than any standard whey shake.

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