Essential Amino Acids are vital building blocks that your body needs externally in sufficient quantities to function well. Therefore, it makes sense to think about how you can meet your needs.
If you care about fitness and healthy eating and / or smart supplementation, then sooner or later the topic will get in your way. It is fair to say, after all, essential amino acids (also often referred to as EAAs) are one of the most important nutritional groups along with essential fatty acids (of which Omega 3 plays an important role).
For this reason, I decided to write this article about these most important amino acids and answer questions about the main topics around them:
With one click, you will be taken directly to the section that interests you the most.
After reading, you should have understood what functions essential amino acids serve for you and how best to get them. You can effectively protect yourself from some bad advice and unnecessary purchases.
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What are essential amino acids?
As mentioned in the introduction, essential amino acids are amino acids that your body must get from the outside in order to survive. This is because he cannot make them himself from other amino acids.
Your body can miraculously convert some amino acids to other types and thus compensate for the deficiency or excess. Therefore, they are called irrelevant.
However, this is not possible with essential amino acids. Therefore, you should always ensure that you consume enough of them through food (and dietary supplements).
How many and which essential amino acids are there?
Most sources talk about eight different essential amino acids. Sometimes more are named. However, your body can do other of these eight:
Now I can teach you the donkey bridge, with which I memorized essential amino acids. Ultimately, in my opinion, this is not necessary unless you are a nutritional chemist. In this case, you already know them anyway.
There are also two half-century amino acids that your body must receive from the outside in certain situations. This:
This is especially important in childhood, in case of illness or severe physical activity.
Other amino acids are also sometimes found in the literature under this term because, under certain circumstances, they cannot be reproduced in sufficient quantities. Due to controversy and complexity, I will save this for you now.
What are essential amino acids for?
In fact, amino acids as the building blocks of proteins play an important role in the construction of various structures in the body. This includes the creation of all kinds of cells, hormones and enzymes. They are also involved in all types of metabolic processes in your body.
Due to increased metabolic activity, healthier hormone and enzyme levels, and greater muscle mass, athletic people have an increased need for essential amino acids. If you want to exercise, it is all the more important that you always consume enough EAA.
What happens if you lack essential amino acids?
If you had to completely skip one or more of the essential amino acids for a longer period of time, it would literally be your death sentence. This sounds pretty egregious now and is probably a little exaggerated because there are some clear symptoms of a deficiency beforehand. However, you should be aware that a lack of these nutrients is not a pleasure for your body at all.
When insufficiently supplied, your body always sets up processes that it doesn’t necessarily need to survive. Others are minimized, and then the body begins to break down structures on which it does not necessarily depend.
This only leads to less dramatic things, such that you no longer make progress in training or go backwards, and your regeneration and wound healing slow down markedly, and you have problems with the quality of your sleep. However, over time or in the event of a severe deficiency, it can also have clear consequences such as muscle loss, hair loss, and severe hormonal imbalances. This protein deficiency is not to be joked about.
So make sure you always consume enough essential amino acids. This also applies if you don’t want to build muscle right now, especially if you are trying to lose weight quickly.
How many essential amino acids are recommended?
At this point, I originally wanted to list the WHO (= World Health Organization) recommendations. Ultimately, however, I believe that individual quantities do not play a major role in practice for most people.
Nature is pretty smart. Our body has adapted pretty well to nutrition based on its needs. Most animal protein sources contain essential amino acids in exactly the ratio our body needs.
Therefore, I just advise you to make sure you are getting enough protein from high quality sources. I’ll tell you exactly what it is in the next section. As the recommended minimum amount, I advise you to consume 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram. If you play sports, this is a reasonable minimum amount. This is more than many people think. For example, a person weighing 80 kg must eat a whole kilogram of low-fat cottage cheese.
By the way, it doesn’t do any harm if you eat a little more. The fear of too much protein in most cases is completely unfounded. Too little protein is 10,000 times more common.
Which foods contain essential amino acids?
Basically, essential amino acids are found in all foods containing proteins. It’s just a matter of the composition of these there. They often talk about the so-called biological value.
Animal feed usually has a very good amino acid profile. The composition and content of essential amino acids are very close to the needs of the human body. Vegetable protein sources, on the other hand, are not so good in terms of their composition to meet your amino acid needs when you look at them individually. However, in the right combination, it also provides good care.
You can find out more in my article Protein foods are the best foods with a lot of protein. In it, I also present various high protein foods in a wide variety of categories. There you can also download a list of foods that I think are the best for your protein needs.
How useful are nutritional supplements to meet the needs of EAA?
But what if you find it difficult to cover your protein needs or your essential amino acids. Are EAA-rich supplements such as EAA or BCAA helpful in this case?
I think that in most cases, concentrated amino acids are not needed, and the price in most cases is disproportionate to the benefits. Eating one protein shake or the other to increase your protein intake quickly and easily is definitely not a mistake. I do this myself regularly. Firstly, because it is an easy way to compensate for the lack of protein through a regular diet. On the other hand, these protein shakes (such as Yummy Piquant Whey are also delicious!
Otherwise, I usually have a few protein bars (wo kann ich sicher steroide kaufen) in my pocket. High quality protein bars with a high protein content (40%) and a good primary protein source (whey or micellar casein) should not be underestimated as a source of protein and as a supplier of essential amino acids. Plus, good protein bars are pretty darn tasty and are a good substitute for candy and snacks on the go. But I am also a protein bar lover.
Your conclusion on essential amino acids
Essential amino acids are essential building blocks for your body. For this reason, you should always make sure that you are consuming enough of these amino acids. Deficiency symptoms are not to be joked about.
But it is not necessary to know which ones and in what quantities. Fortunately, this regulates nature well. If you eat the right sources of protein, it is not so difficult to meet the need for essential amino acids. If you meet your protein needs, you do it automatically.
Dietary supplements and supplements are, of course, a way to compensate for the deficiency in your diet to some extent and make things a little easier for you. However, I always advise you to do as much as possible about a healthy diet with lots of protein, healthy fats, and lots of fruits and vegetables. With one shake or the other, you can then optimize a little. It may not be necessary, but it is not so delicious and it is quite tasty.
And don’t forget: your health is your health.