The Benefits of Amino Acids

by Antony Brooks
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The Benefits of Amino Acids

Amino Acids & Their Benefits.

Amino Acids (AA) are the most abundant of the organic molecules of living beings. They therefore play a predominant and structural role in the essential functions of cellular life. There are 20 common amino acids that are part of natural proteins. Once assembled by a peptide bond, they form the famous protein!

Two groups categorize them as essential and non-essential. Here is a short list that does not characterize all of them, but rather the most popular amino acids.

Essential Amino Acids (EAA):

Essential amino acids are those that cannot be synthesized in the body. You must therefore consume proteins to obtain them.



Isoleucine is essential for the formation of haemoglobin, to regulate blood sugar and energy levels. This amino acid is super important for athletes because it helps in the treatment and repair of muscle tissue, skin and bones. It has been observed that the amount of this amino acid is insufficient in people who suffer from mental and physical problems.


Leucine interacts with isoleucine and valine to accelerate the healing of muscle tissue, skin and bone. It is recommended for those who have undergone surgery. This amino acid reduces blood sugar levels and helps increase the production of growth hormone.


This amino acid is a natural relaxant that helps treat insomnia. Tryptophan reduces anxiety and depression, stabilizes mood and helps treat hemicrania. It helps the immune system to function properly. This amino acid controls weight by reducing appetite, increases the release of growth hormones and controls hyperactivity in children.


Valine is essential for muscle metabolism, coordination, tissue repair and maintenance of nitrogen balance in the body, which muscle tissue uses as a source of energy. This amino acid is also useful for treating liver and gallbladder diseases. In addition, it promotes mental vigour and calm emotions.


This amino acid has an important function in the transfer of nitrogen from peripheral tissues to the liver. Alanine aids in the metabolism of glucose, a simple carbohydrate that the body uses for energy. It protects us from the accumulation of toxic substances released into muscle cells when muscle protein is rapidly broken down to meet energy needs, such as during aerobic exercise. This amino acid strengthens the immune system with the production of antibodies.


Non-Essential Amino Acids:

Non-essential A.A., can be synthesized by the body itself.



It is considered the "natural viagra" for increasing blood flow. Among its functions: delaying the growth of tumours and cancers to strengthen the immune system; increasing the size and activity of the thymus gland that produces T cells (essential components of the immune system). Arginine helps detoxify the liver by neutralizing ammonia, it reduces the chronic toxic effects of alcohol used in the treatment of male infertility. This amino acid helps to lose weight because it promotes an increase in muscle mass and a reduction in body fat. It helps to release growth hormones and tissue repair. An important component of collagen, it is used to treat arthritis and connective tissue problems.


It is one of the most common amino acids found in muscles. It contributes to the building and maintenance of muscle tissue, preventing muscle wasting that can be accompanied by long periods of rest or diseases such as cancer or HIV. This amino acid is a "brain fuel" that increases brain function and mental activity. Glutamine promotes a healthy digestive system, reduces the time it takes to treat ulcers and controls fatigue, depression and impotence. It decreases the craving for sugar and alcohol and is recently used to treat schizophrenia and dementia.


Glycine delays muscle degeneration, improves glycogen storage, releasing glucose for energy needs. This amino acid promotes a healthy prostate, nervous and immune system. Glycine is useful for repairing damaged tissue.


It helps to measure the release of growth hormones by aiding the metabolism of body fat (this effect is major when combined with arginine and carnitine). This amino acid is essential for a healthy immune system because it detoxifies ammonia and helps liver regeneration and insulin secretion. Ornithine causes insulin to work as an anabolic hormone to build muscle.


Taurine strengthens the heart muscle, improves vision and prevents macular degeneration. It is a key component of bile, necessary for fat digestion and useful for people suffering from arteriosclerosis, edema, heart problems, hypertension and hypoglycemia. It is an essential amino acid for the correct use of sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium. Taurine prevents the development of potentially dangerous cardiac arrhythmias and is used to treat anxiety, epilepsy, hyperactivity and convulsions.


Tyrosine is an important amino acid for general metabolism. It is a precursor of adrenaline and dopamine, which regulate mood. This amino acid stimulates the metabolism and the nervous system, has a positive effect on mood and helps to reduce body fat. Tyrosine is involved in the production of melanin (the pigment responsible for hair and skin colour) and in the functions of the adrenal, thyroid and pituitary glands. It is used against chronic fatigue, narcolepsy, anxiety, depression, allergies and headache.


To Remember,

Now that you know the function of each of these amino acids, you can see that adequate protein intake is essential for the proper functioning of our body and vital functions.

Remember that for a vegan diet, or if you plan to adopt this lifestyle, few plant-based foods provide a complete protein intake. These different vegetables, nuts and legumes contain their own different amino acids but are not equivalent to a complete protein so there is where powdered amino acids can fill the gap!

Click here for a list of these protein foods and supplements for vegans.

There is also trios of amino acids which is called Branched-Chain Amino Acids or better known as "BCAA" which includes the three amino acids mentioned above; Leucine + Isoleucine + Valine, whose task is to provide instant energy and prevent muscle catabolism.

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by Antony Brooks


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