What is Beta-Alanine & who can benefit from it?
Beta-alanine is a non-essential amino acid.
Unlike most amino acids, it is not used by your body to synthesize proteins.
Beta-alanine is a non-essential amino acid that, when combined with histidine, forms the dipeptide carnosine.
Carnosine is found in high concentrations in skeletal muscle tissue and plays a role in buffering the acidic environment that can accumulate during high-intensity exercise.
Increased Carnosine Levels: As mentioned, beta-alanine supplementation increases the levels of carnosine in muscles. Carnosine helps buffer the acidity that builds up in muscles during intense exercise, particularly during activities like high-intensity interval training (HIIT) or weightlifting.
Delaying Muscle Fatigue: By buffering acid buildup, carnosine can help delay the onset of muscle fatigue. This means athletes may be able to perform at a high intensity for a longer duration before experiencing a decline in performance.
Improved High-Intensity Exercise Capacity: Research suggests that beta-alanine supplementation may be particularly beneficial for activities that involve short bursts of high-intensity effort, such as sprinting or lifting heavy weights. It may enhance an athlete's ability to perform repeated bouts of high-intensity exercise.
Enhanced Endurance Performance: While the primary benefits of beta-alanine are seen in short-duration, high-intensity activities, some studies also suggest potential benefits for endurance athletes. By delaying the onset of fatigue, beta-alanine could indirectly improve endurance performance.
Optimal Dosage and Timing: To experience the benefits of beta-alanine, it's often recommended to take it in doses of 2-5 grams per day. It's worth noting that the effects of beta-alanine are cumulative, and it may take a few weeks of consistent supplementation to see noticeable changes in muscle carnosine levels. Timing is not as critical as consistency, but some athletes prefer to take it before exercise to ensure elevated carnosine levels during their training sessions.
The standard dosage of beta-alanine is 2–5 grams daily, and can be split across servings.
Consuming beta-alanine with a meal can further increase carnosine levels.
Beta-alanine is generally found in may pre-workouts, with the clinical dose being 3.2g.
Beta-alanine can also be found in it's purest form, such as ATP Nutrition's Beta-alanine.
This information is to be used as a guide only. It's important to consult with a healthcare professional or a sports nutritionist before starting any new supplement regimen. Additionally, individual responses to beta-alanine can vary, and not everyone may experience the same level of benefit.