Essential Amino Acids
EAAs consist of nine specific amino acids:
Leucine — the “king” of amino acids that stimulates protein synthesis and helps inhibit protein breakdown.
Isoleucine — the “little brother” of leucine that can stimulate protein synthesis (albeit not as strong as leucine) and also help reduce muscle breakdown during exercise. Isoleucine also supports immune function, metabolism, and hemoglobin production.
Valine — aids energy conversion in the body as well as enhances glycogen synthesis in skeletal muscle, which supports recovery.
Lysine — key structural component of collagen and elastin, which supports healthy joints, ligaments, skin, hair, and nails and also plays an important role in immunity.
Threonine — aids fat metabolism and immune function. Threonine also works with lysine to support important structural proteins in the body like collagen and elastin.
Phenylalanine — supports production of dopamine as well as the catecholamines adrenaline and noradrenaline, which are critical for nervous system function, exercise performance, and fat burning.
Tryptophan — a precursor for serotonin (and subsequently melatonin) that beneficially impacts mood and immune system as well as support anti-inflammatory processes Histidine — a precursor to histamine, which can help combat free radicals generated by exercise.
Methionine — aids the liver with fat digestion and supports cardiovascular health The EAAs are termed “essential” because our bodies cannot synthesize them on their own. As such, the EAAs must be obtained through the diet from either food or EAA supplements, such as EAA Max or EAA Max Energy. Food sources which are abundant in EAAs include:
- Lean beef
- Fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel, etc.)
- Shellfish (shrimp, clams, mussels, etc.)
- Cottage Cheese
- Greek Yogurt
- Whey protein powder, such as Primeval Labs ISOLIT or WHEY
In addition to whole food sources, it may also be helpful to use an EAA supplement, like Alpha EAAs, Amino Kick or, Titan EAAs to help ensure you’re getting enough essential amino acids each day.