Australian Natural Bodz - - Supplement Central -

Nat­u­ral Body­builders are al­ways look­ing for a quicker way to build more lean mass and it does ap­pear that sup­ple­ment­ing with BCAA’s of­fer a great deal more than many of the overly hyped up sup­ple­ments avail­able on the mar­ket. How­ever, look­ing through some of the re­search it does ap­pear that the po­ten­tial mus­cle and per­for­mance gains in­clud­ing fat loss are dose re­lated. Let’s have a look at some of the re­cent stud­ies.

BCAAs The re­searchers per­formed an ex­per­i­ment on 54 fit stu­dents, of whom most did run­ning or cy­cling in their free time. The sub­jects fol­lowed a train­ing pro­gram con­sist­ing of con­tin­u­ous ses­sions of 30 and 60 min­utes and in­ter­val train­ing con­sist­ing of four-minute sets. They did this for a pe­riod of 11 weeks.

Most of the stud­ies in which lab an­i­mals or hu­mans were given BCAAs fo­cus on mark­ers. The re­searchers looked at mol­e­cules that are as­sumed to re­veal how much mus­cle pro­tein or­gan­isms build up or how much fat they break down. But there are few stud­ies in which re­searchers have just di­rectly mea­sured the amount of strength or mus­cle body­builders built up.

Study One ex­cep­tion is the study that Mike Spil­lane pre­sented in 2013 at the an­nual meet­ing of the In­ter­na­tional So­ci­ety of Sports Nu­tri­tion. In that study he got 19 men to do, for the first time in their lives, weight train­ing for eight weeks. Half of the men took 4.5 g BCAAs half an hour be­fore and half an hour af­ter the train­ing ses­sion. So they took a to­tal of 9 g BCAAs per day.

At the end of the trial the sub­jects who had taken BCAAs had built up more lean body mass than the sub­jects in the placebo group. What’s more, the sub­jects in the BCAA group had lost a lit­tle bit of fat mass, while the sub­jects in the placebo group had gained a lit­tle bit of fat. But the dif­fer­ences be­tween the groups were not sta­tis­ti­cally sig­nif­i­cant.

An­other study Four years pre­vi­ously, Jim Stop­pani pre­sented a com­pa­ra­ble study, also at the an­nual meet­ing of the In­ter­na­tional So­ci­ety of Sports Nu­tri­tion. In that study 36 ex­pe­ri­enced body­builders trained for eight weeks in the same way and fol­lowed the same diet.

The re­searchers di­vided their sub­jects into three groups. Dur­ing the train­ing pe­riod one group was given a sup­ple­ment con­tain­ing 28 g fast car­bo­hy­drates, an­other a sup­ple­ment con­tain­ing 28 g whey, and the third a sup­ple­ment con­tain­ing 14 g BCAAs.

The study showed that the BCAA group built up more mus­cle mass and strength than the other groups. In fact the BCAA group showed an in­crease of 4kg in 2 months!

It does ap­pear that the ben­e­fits from sup­ple­ment­ing with BCAA’s are some­what dose de­pen­dant based on the stud­ies above. Also tim­ing may be an im­por­tant fac­tor, sup­ple­ment­ing both be­fore and af­ter work­outs and pos­si­bly dur­ing with an in­tra work­out drink.

Ref­er­ence: J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2009; 6(Suppl 1): P1.

Photo By Rob Bell Photo by An­toni­etta Jones

sam barry

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