Do I Need BCAAs?
Everyone needs BCCAs in some quantity. Your body needs BCAAs to sustain you, but you don’t necessarily have to get them from a supplement, especially if you don’t work out. For many people who aren’t trying to build or sustain muscle, diet alone gives them all the BCAAs they need.
What’s The Difference Between Protein, Amino Acids, & BCAAs?
Protein is a macronutrient hat your body uses to build muscle mass and other body tissues. Protein is essential to all living organisms—human and non-human.
Amino Acids are the organic compounds that makeup proteins. So you must have amino acids to have protein.
Branched-Chain Amino Acids are an essential class of amino acids. They specialize in helping your body produce insulin, which helps your body turn sugars into energy. BCAAs also carry nitrogen throughout your body, which helps you form the complex muscle tissues you need to survive, and that you want to make your body look great.
So BCAAs are a type of amino acid, and amino acids are what make up proteins, and proteins are what make up your muscle tissues! We all know that we need plenty of protein to build and sustain muscle, but we need BCAAs for that, too.
Do I Need BCAAs If I Take Protein?
Good question. If BCAAs are amino acids and amino acids make up proteins, then aren’t you getting tons of BCAAs with your protein supplement?
If you take a protein supplement, it probably does contain BCAAs, and it might even contain all the BCAAs that your body needs. But considering how beneficial BCAAs are, many athletes, fitness buffs, and regular folks chasing their ideal bodies choose to add a BCAA supplement to make sure they’ve covered all of their bases.
When you’re working out at high intensity, you’re rapidly depleting your body’s stores of nutrients like glycogen and glucose. The release of BCAAs into your body triggers your body to continue synthesizing protein instead of ceasing protein synthesis due to the stress of exercise. And protein synthesis is exactly what you want when you’re trying to build and maintain lean muscle.