Do Amino Acids Help You Lose Weight?
There are many health and fitness outcomes sought by those who exercise. A significant number of people at your local gym are probably there to lose weight, while others seek greater muscle mass or faster race times. In many cases, the routines these people use will vary based on their goals; similarly, the supplements they take will often be different. However, given the vast array of products available online and in stores, it can be tough to find the fitness supplement that works for you. Protein is the common answer, but as amino acid-based products grow in popularity, they offer an effective, efficient alternative that might work for those concerned about weight. Still, you might reasonably have some questions about amino acids; for example, do amino acids help you lose weight? To find out, keep reading as the people at aminoVITAL® shed some light on the topic.
How Does Weight Loss Work?
In many instances, losing weight is a matter of following a simple equation: calories consumed minus calories used equals your net weight gain or loss. Of course, there are other factors at work as well; your metabolism plays a big role in how many calories your body uses up, while your diet controls the other side of the equation. Overall, though, this calories in/calories out relationship is the cornerstone of maintaining or changing body weight.
A good rule of thumb for healthy weight loss is to aim for a 500-calorie deficit per day. A single pound of body fat is worth about 3,500 calories, so those 500 missing calories each day translate into one pound of fat lost per week – the most you should aim for. In addition to the calorie deficit, however, let’s look at some ways amino acids can affect your ability to lose weight.
Amino Acids and Weight Loss
There is a growing body of research indicating that supplementing with amino acids – in particular, a class of amino acid called “branched-chain amino acids” – may increase the use of fat as fuel during exercise, boosting weight loss in the process.
Several studies1,2 have indicated that BCAA supplementation can lead to a reduction in what’s called “visceral adipose tissue,” another term for body fat. Another study3 found that while overall weight seemed relatively unaffected by BCAAs, those who used these supplements had healthier waist-to-hip ratios and leaner legs, suggesting that while the number on the scale may not always move, the fat of some individuals who use BCAAs may be used to create new muscle tissue in its place.
What’s perfectly clear, however, is that amino acid supplements like those from aminoVITAL® are a better choice for weight loss than most conventional protein-based supplements. Take a look at the nutrition label the next time you pick up a tub of protein powder, and you’ll likely see that it contains significant amounts of sugar and calories per serving; in some cases, a single scoop might have well over 100 calories and as much as 20 grams of sugar. Add that to a glass of milk and you could easily wind up with a drink that takes up a large chunk of your daily calorie allowance, especially if you’re on a diet.
By comparison, amino acid supplements tend to be much leaner. Our Action intra-workout mix has only 15 calories. Best of all, these formulas mix well and taste great when added to a bottle of water, which itself has no calories at all. (And actually, our Fast Charge mix doesn’t even need water; you can simply open the packet and pour it onto your tongue!)
Other Benefits of Amino Acid Supplements
In addition to their ability to help with weight loss, amino acid supplements come with a number of advantages that help improve athletic performance, speed recovery times, and increase muscle mass. To outline these benefits, let’s look at the various roles played by BCAAs:
- The first of the BCAAs, leucine, is the amino acid responsible for triggering muscle protein synthesis – the process of generating new muscle tissue – and can help with energy production as well.
- The second BCAA, isoleucine, works to improve endurance and boost performance by supplying the muscles with energy. It does this by promoting the flow of glucose (the body’s main form of fuel) to the cells of the muscles and helping those cells turn it into energy. Isoleucine may also streamline the post-workout recovery process.
- The third and final BCAA, valine, protects muscle tissue from damage brought on by exercise. This helps preserve existing muscle mass and can reduce the amount of healing that must be done after exercise.
Aside from the individual benefits of each BCAA, amino acids in general also take effect much more quickly than protein-based products because they require far less digestion; a BCAA supplement from aminoVITAL® can kick in up to three times faster than whey, for instance.
Lean, Efficient Amino Acid Supplements Available from aminoVITAL®
For those who want a leg up on their fitness or weight loss journey, amino acid supplements might be just the thing. These supplements have very few calories, so they’ll fit well into just about any diet, and they provide all the benefits you’d expect from a fitness supplement and then some. To learn more about these lean, effective products, visit the aminoVITAL® website or call (888) 264-6673 today.