With the possible exception of diet colas, the one idea I have flip-flopped on the most is if BCAA (branch chained amino acids) are a valuable supplement. In the post Thinking About Supplements – 2012 Edition, I mentioned I lost faith in BCAA.
BCAA – I know Leangains loves BCAA (Branched Chain Amino Acids) as does my mentor Art De Vany. The most common benefit associated with BCAA is that it preserves muscle during fasted training. I was already highly skeptical before I listened to Brad Pilon on the Fat Burning Man podcast. He made a solid case that BCAA is absolutely not needed to prevent muscle loss during fasted training.
Well, today I read a post by Art De Vany that has got me ready to try BCAA once again. How I dropped to 5.6% body fat and gained muscle, part 1** makes the case that BCAA can suppress appetite.
I have only sparingly used BCAAs over the years, but now I am a big fan. They keep me from getting hungry, keep my brain from lacking energy, promote muscle growth, and, above all, protect and stimulate my mitochondria. As you will see below from my references, the BCAAs give my body a metabolic advantage on both sides of the energy equation.
And how much does Art take?
I take about from 1 to 2 grams of Guardian BCAAs with B12 a day. I use a teaspoon if I am hungry and do not want to stop to eat. I take another mid day for an energy boost, if convenient, and another an hour after dinner and well before bed.
Now I took BCAA a few years ago, but just on days when I was fasting and lifting. I don’t recall an appetite effect, but I was only having a few doses a week. Considering I am now taking control of my appetite, this sounds like a cheap experiment. And if one could get an energy benefit then that might help me reduce caffeine levels.
Has anyone noticed an appetite or energy effect from BCAA?
** no longer online