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Everything You Need to Know about BCAAs: Benefits, Uses and Recommended Proportions

Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs) - leucine, isoleucine and valine - are fundamental components for muscle growth and sports performance. Let's delve into each of them and the intake recommendations for athletes. Unlike other amino acids, they are primarily metabolized in the muscles rather than the liver, making them a quick source of energy during intense exercise.

Leucine is one of the essential amino acids most critical for muscle protein synthesis. It is key to the formation of new muscle and is considered the main driver of protein synthesis signaling in the body.


Isoleucine is essential for the production of hemoglobin and contributes to blood sugar regulation, providing energy to muscles during exercise. Additionally, it plays an important role in muscle repair and recovery.

Valine also contributes to muscle repair, while providing additional energy to the muscles. Helps maintain a positive nitrogen balance in the body, essential for muscle growth and repair.

Benefits of BCAAs:

1. They stimulate protein synthesis: Leucine in particular plays a crucial role in activating muscle protein synthesis, promoting muscle growth and repair.

2. Reduced muscle fatigue: BCAAs can delay the feeling of fatigue during exercise by decreasing the production of serotonin in the brain, allowing for prolonged performance.

3. Recovery support: They help reduce muscle damage after intense exercise, accelerating recovery and reducing post-workout muscle soreness.

Recommended Proportion of BCAAs for Athletes:

The optimal ratio of BCAAs is usually around 2:1:1 (leucine:isoleucine:valine), which means a higher amount of leucine compared to the other two amino acids. This ratio has been associated with better results in muscle protein synthesis and recovery after exercise.

Use and Recommended Dosage:

For athletes, the usual dose of BCAAs varies between 5 and 20 grams per day, depending on body weight, training intensity and specific goals. It is recommended to take them before, during or after exercise to maximize their benefits.

Are BCAAs right for you?

If you are looking to improve your athletic performance, accelerate muscle recovery, or simply optimize your training results, BCAAs can be a valuable addition. However, it is essential to balance its consumption with a proper diet and consult a health professional or nutritionist for a personalized dosage.

Conclusions about BCAAs:

BCAAs, especially when taken in the proper proportion, can be a valuable supplement for athletes looking to optimize their performance and muscle recovery. The combination of these key amino acids can make a difference in protein synthesis and the success of your sports goals.

Photo by Michael Lammli on Unsplash