What Wednesday: What Is Leucine?
This ingredient is pretty important when talking about building muscle, it could actually be the most important. Protein takes a back seat to Leucine...well kind of. We will explain why later.
Leucine is one of the three Branch Chain Amino Acids or for short BCAAs. The other two BCAAs are Isoleucine and Valine. Each one of them has a role in the body for building muscle. Leucine is the most important due to its potency and its function of signaling protein synthesis along with its fat burning capabilities. Protein synthesis just means that the body begins to use or release stored nutrients to start recovering (building muscle). The more your body synthesizes its protein stores, the more muscle you will build.
The opposite of muscle building is muscle loss or muscle catabolism, which we all dread. Leucine is also shown to prevent muscle breakdown due to its ability to tell the body to build muscle. This of it as an energy source for muscle building. When the body has a high concentration of Leucine, it can focus on burning stored fat more efficiently leading to a more toned body composition. TALK ABOUT A WIN-WIN!
I know what you are thinking right now, "where can I get my hands on some Leucine!" You are not wrong, and we still have more benefits to talk about. We just talked about the effects of Leucine with weight loss. Another aspect of this amazing ingredient is a suppression of appetite. Sipping Amino's or BCAAs in between meals can curb your hunger, increase muscle building and prevent muscle loss. THATS A WIN-WIN-WIN!
Now, where do you find Leucine? Before, we mentioned that protein takes a back seat to Leucine but that was kind of a lie. Protein has Leucine in it - when you drink protein post workout to build muscle, you are really drinking it for the amino acids. The actual protein doesn't build the muscles, the breakdown of it is used to feed muscles nutrients to replenish. So you can get your Leucine from protein or you can just buy a BCAA/Leucine supplement. Either way you will get a good amount, and your muscles/body will thank you. This ingredient is no joke and should be a staple in everyones diet. Its simple, if you are looking to improve your body and build muscle, TAKE LEUCINE.
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About the Author: Mike has been in the fitness industry for over 6 years mastering and understanding supplements. He focuses strictly on how particular ingredients create a cause and effect relationship in the body through supplementation. Ever since his passion was born for fitness and supplements, it has been his desire to educate and spread his knowledge. If you have any questions for him, please comment below.
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