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What are amino acids?

Amino acids are used by avid athletes to reduce muscle pain and stimulate muscle growth. But what are amino acids† Who are they suitable for, what effect do they have on your body and are they actually safe?

Amino acids are used by avid athletes to reduce muscle pain & stimulate muscle growth. Proteins consist of building blocks called amino acids, of which there are 22 types. (including essential & non-essential amino acids) The body naturally produces the non-essential amino acids itself,  it is therefore essential that you consume the other amino acids yourself.

You can get these amino acids from different types of beans, grains, dairy, meat and fish.

When are amino acids useful as a supplement?

Amino acids are useful as a supplement if you do not eat certain foods or eat too little and therefore have a protein deficiency. If this is the case, it is possible that you do not get certain essential amino acids, since these are amino acids that your body cannot make itself.

When amino acids are used, care must be taken that you take the essential amino acids as a supplement. Your body makes the non-essential amino acids itself, so you don't have to take them extra if supplement.


Research has shown that there is a certain group of amino acids that can contribute to a faster recovery of muscle strength after intensive strength training. These are the branched chain amino acids (BCAA); Leucine, Isoleucine & Valine. These are the 3 essential amino acids that are absorbed into the body just a little faster than other amino acids & this combination of amino acids makes up to 40/50% of the daily requirement of essential amino acids. Most amino acids are broken down in the liver, but these amino acids do their job in muscle & fat tissue so that they are converted into . during exercise energy!

You get BCAA by eating protein-rich foods. Taking BCAAs could help delay fatigue, improve your exercise performance & promote recovery. This applies to strength as well as endurance sports & it is also claimed that BCAAs can increase muscle mass. Despite the mounting evidence that BCAAs help with recovery, there is still no agreement around these scientific studies, because there is a lot of contradiction, so it is not possible to say with certainty how effective BCAAs actually are.

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