Amino acids

Amino acids

11-08-2015
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What you can achieve by taking it?
  • They are essential to many vital processes in the body
  • They are the building blocks of proteins and therefore are responsible for synthesising them



Review

Overview

Amino acids are the building blocks of our body. Our muscles, tendons, organs, glands, nails and hair are built from proteins. The growth, regeneration and maintenance of these cells are dependent on amino acid intake. Along with water, a large part of our body weight is made up of proteins. There are amino acids that must be obtained from our diet since we can’t get them in any other way; they are the essential amino acids; there are amino acids that the body can synthesize from other sources; they are the non-essential amino acids.

Below we summarise the role of the different amino acids in the body. You can read more information in the detailed review of each amino acid.

Histidine (essential amino acid)

  • the largest quantity is found in hemoglobin
  • it is used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, ulcers and anaemia
  • it is essential to tissue growth and regeneration
  • it plays an important role in the maintenance of myelin sheaths (it protects the neurons)
  • it is required for red and white blood cell production
  • it protects the body against radiation damage
  • it lowers blood pressure
  • it supports the removal of heavy metals from the body

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Isoleucine (essential amino acid)

  • It is required for haemoglobin production
  • it stabilises and regulates blood sugar and energy levels
  • it is especially useful for athletes, since it supports the regeneration of muscles, skin and bones.

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Leucine (essential amino acid)

  • Along with isoleucine and valine, it supports the regeneration of muscles, skin and bones
  • it may be beneficial to the healing process following surgical interventions
  • it reduces blood glucose level and enhances growth hormone production

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Lysine (essential amino acid)

  • it helps the body absorb calcium and maintains a positive nitrogen balance in adults
  • it supports collagen production (the building material of cartilage and connective tissue)
  • it supports the production of antibodies that prevent herpes infection
  • it decreases serum triglyceride levels

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Methionine (essential amino acid)

  • it is a strong antioxidant
  • it is an excellent source of sulphur, which may be beneficial against various hair, nail and skin problems
  • it supports fat breakdown and therefore it prevents its accumulation in the liver and the arteries, which may block blood circulation in the heart, the brain and the kidneys
  • it helps body detoxification (heavy metals)
  • it helps to eliminate muscle weakness
  • it protects the body against radiation damage
  • it promotes the excretion of oestrogen
  • it decreases histamine levels in the body

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Phenylalanine (essential amino acid)

  • it is used by the brain to produce norepinephrine (it transmits signals between the neurons)
  • it increases alertness and vitality
  • it enhances mood
  • it controls pain
  • it is used in the treatment of arthritis
  • it is beneficial against depression and migraine

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Threonine (essential amino acid)

  • it helps to maintain protein balance in the body
  • it plays an important role in collagen, elastin and tooth enamel production
  • it aids liver and lipotropic function when combined with aspartic acid and methionine
  • it assists the metabolism and the absorption of different substances

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Tryptophan (essential amino acid)

  • a natural tranquilizer, it helps to eliminate insomnia
  • it reduces anxiety and depression and enhances mood
  • it helps in the treatment of migraine headaches
  • it supports the immune system
  • it reduces appetite
  • it supports the production of HGH

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Valine (essential amino acid)

  • it is required for muscle metabolism and coordination, tissue regeneration and the maintenance of a positive nitrogen balance in the body
  • it is used as an energy source by muscle cells
  • it promotes mental function and has a sedative effect

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Alanine (non-essential amino acid)

  • it plays a major role in the transfer of nitrogen from peripheral tissue to the liver
  • it enhances glucose metabolism
  • it prevents the buildup of toxic substances that are released when muscle protein is broken down (e.g. during aerobic exercise)
  • it supports the immune system by producing antibodies

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Arginine (non-essential amino acids)

  • it is considered ''The Natural Viagra" since it increases blood flow to the penis.
  • it slows down the growth of tumours
  • it supports your immune system
  • it helps to neutralise ammonia, which is important for liver detoxification
  • it reduces the effects of chronic alcohol toxicity
  • it increases sperm count
  • it supports the production of HGH
  • it is a major component of collagen

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Aspartic acid (non-essential amino acid)

  • it is beneficial against chronic fatigue and depression
  • it rejuvenates cellular activity, cell formation and metabolism, which gives a younger looking appearance
  • it participates in body detoxification along with other amino acids
  • it helps the transport of certain minerals from the intestines to the blood and cells

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Cysteine and cystine (non-essential amino acid)

  • these are strong antioxidants
  • they protect our body against radiation damage
  • they protect the brain from damage due to alcohol, drugs, and smoking
  • they are used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and hardening the arteries.
  • between 10 and 14% skin and hair is composed of them

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Glutamic acid (non-essential amino acid)

  • it is a neurotransmitter for the central nervous system, the brain and spinal cord
  • it plays an important role in the metabolism of sugars and fats
  • it supports the transportation of potassium in the spinal cord
  • it acts as fuel for the brain
  • it is used in the treatment of epilepsy, mental retardation and muscular dystrophy

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Glutamine (non-essential amino acid)

  • it is the most abundant amino acid found in muscles
  • it helps to build and maintain muscle tissue
  • it also acts as fuel for the brain
  • it assists in maintaining the proper acid/alkaline balance in our body
  • it plays an important role in the preservation of a healthy digestive tract

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Glycine (non-essential amino acid)

  • it prevents muscle degradation
  • It improves glycogen storage, thus freeing up glucose molecules to provider energy
  • It is beneficial for prostate health
  • It is important for tissue regeneration and supports its recovery

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Ornithine (non-essential amino acid)

  • it supports HGH production, which is beneficial for fat burning (this effect is enhanced if combined with arginine and carnitine)
  • it is important for immune function
  • it removes ammonia from the body
  • it stimulates insulin secretion and helps insulin work as an anabolic hormone

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Proline (non-essential amino acid)

  • it supports collagen production
  • it supports cartilage recovery and strengthens the joints, the tendons and the heart muscle
  • when combined with Vitamin C, it promotes healthy connective tissues

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Serine (non-essential amino acid)

  • it is required for the proper metabolism of fats and fatty acids, muscle growth and the immune function
  • it is a component of the myelin sheaths that covers nerve tissue
  • it plays an important role in RNA and DNA function and cell formation
  • it supports the production of immunoglobulins and antibodies

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Taurine (non-essential amino acid)

  • it strengthens the heart muscle
  • it boosts vision and helps to prevent macular degeneration
  • it is a key component of bile, which is needed for the digestion of fats
  • it is beneficial for atherosclerosis, oedema, heart disorders and hypoglycaemia
  • it is vital for the proper utilisation of sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium
  • it helps prevent the development of cardiac arrhythmia
  • it is used in the treatment of anxiety, epilepsy and hyperactivity

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Tyrosine (non-essential amino acid)

  • it plays a role in metabolism
  • it is a precursor of adrenaline, norepinephrine and dopamine, which enhance the mood and stimulate the metabolism of the nervous system
  • it acts as a mood elevator, suppresses the appetite and helps to reduce body fat
  • it plays a role in the production of melanin (which is responsible for hair and skin colour)
  • it is used in the treatment of chronic fatigue, narcolepsy, anxiety, depression, low sex activity, allergies and headaches

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