Amino acids are fundamental compounds that are used to create everything from new muscle tissue to the neurotransmitters and enzymes that keep our systems running smoothly. Although the most common use for amino acids is as a form of fitness supplement, these compounds can support many other functions that help us live healthier, more fulfilling lives. For instance, there are many who believe that amino acids can be used as a sleep aid, allowing those with insomnia, chronic pain, and other conditions that interfere with sleep to more easily rest their weary eyes. Of course, there are many claims on the Internet regarding miracle cures for this problem or that ailment, so let’s examine the topic at hand. Do amino acids help you sleep? To find out, keep reading as the people at aminoVITAL® provide some answers.
Which Amino Acids Help with Sleep?
Of the 20 main amino acids our bodies use, only one or a few typically interact with a given system. An example: Branched-chain amino acids have become popular for their ability to boost athletic performance, but other amino acids, such as lysine, have virtually no impact on a person’s strength or speed, no matter how much of them you take.
This makes it important to distinguish exactly which amino acids might be able to help with a particular condition or bodily function, such as promoting better sleep. These compounds often provide indirect assistance, meaning that they themselves don’t affect sleep but may influence systems in the body that relate to sleep, delivering results in a roundabout way. There are a few particular amino acids that can improve your sleep; more information about these compounds can be found below:
Tryptophan is an important amino acid because it is used to synthesize a number of beneficial chemicals in the brain, but this effect requires a lengthy process of conversions from one compound to another. First, tryptophan is turned into another amino acid called 5-hydroxytryptophan, or 5-HTP for short. This compound is then converted into a neurotransmitter called serotonin, which is commonly understood to affect a person’s sleep, mood, and cognitive abilities. Serotonin is, in turn, used to create melatonin, the hormone that tells your body when it’s time to go to sleep.
This amino acid improves a person’s quality of sleep through two primary avenues: helping to regulate body temperature and increasing levels of serotonin in the brain. The first of these effects may not have obvious implications for sleep, but the truth is that our core body temperature drops slightly as part of the natural progression of sleep, and glycine helps make that happen. As mentioned above, serotonin is a key factor in regulating sleep, and glycine helps to elevate levels of this critical neurotransmitter.
GABA (gamma-Aminobutyric Acid)
Though it’s not one of the 20 fundamental amino acids our bodies use, gamma-aminobutyric acid – more commonly known as GABA – is nonetheless important to our health. While many neurotransmitters serve their roles by relaying messages from neuron to neuron, GABA’s purpose is to block certain signals in the brain, which produces a calming effect that can help people ease into a more restful state.
Other Benefits of Amino Acid Supplements
As mentioned above, the various amino acids our bodies use can serve all sorts of purposes, depending on the compound in question. While GABA, tryptophan, and glycine may help with sleep, amino acids like leucine, isoleucine, and valine – the three branched-chain amino acids, or BCAAs – can be quite effective as a fitness supplement because they help your body move faster, push harder, and recover more quickly.
Amino acid supplements like those from aminoVITAL® include the three BCAAs, along with the compounds glutamine and arginine; read more about the benefits of these amino acids below:
- Leucine is the amino acid that’s responsible for triggering the creation of new muscle tissue. Essentially, leucine is what tells the body to start making bigger muscles.
- Despite the similarities in the names, isoleucine serves a different purpose than leucine. Isoleucine promotes the use of glucose (energy) by the muscles and also hastens the body’s recovery process after exercise.
- Valine serves more of a support role by helping protect the muscles against damage during exercise and regulating key systems in the body.
- Glutamine works to speed up the recovery of muscles and reduce soreness, so you can get back to the gym as soon as possible.
- Like valine, arginine serves many purposes, the most important of which may be that it improves circulation and helps rid the body of toxic ammonia.
Amino acid-based supplements offer other benefits as well; for instance, they take effect much more quickly than traditional protein supplements, since they require almost no digestion. These supplements are also much leaner than your typical protein-based product, offering as few as 10 calories and no sugar at all. The result of this stripped-down formula is a supplement that can support pretty much any fitness-related outcome without undermining your overall health and fitness goals.
Powerful Amino Acid Supplements Available Now from aminoVITAL®
If sleep is what you crave, know that there are amino acids that can help; if you’re more concerned with fitness or athletic performance, however, you’ll want to reach for different amino acids altogether. The compounds contained in aminoVITAL® supplements can boost gains, reduce fatigue and soreness, promote recovery, and help you stay energized throughout your exercise routine. To learn more about these potent amino acid fitness supplements and how they can help you, visit aminoVITAL® online or call (888) 264-6673 today.