What Are BCAAs?
Your body relies on glycogen stores during your workouts, but when they run low your body switches to BCAAs (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) for fuel. Your body can’t make BCAAs on its own, so you’ll need to get them from your diet. BCAAs promote muscle growth, repair and reduce muscle soreness.
When To Eat BCAAs?
During intense exercises, your muscles tear slightly and then repair to grow stronger – this is when you need BCAAs. You can eat (or drink) them before, during, or after your workout. It is a good idea to talk to an expert before making any drastic changes to your diet.
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Researchers have found that a three- to five-gram serving of BCAAs is sufficient. It’s all about timing so, be sure to plan to eat BCAA’s around the time of your training session.
Try these foods, they contain all three types of BCAAs in one serving:
- Canned Tuna
- Lean Beef
- Chicken Breast
- Eggs (3)
- Turkey Breast
- Lowfat Greek Yogurt (1 cup)
- Flank Steak
- Wild Salmon
What About Supplements?
There are a lot of good lower-calorie supplements you can choose from if you want to get a BCAA boost before your workout – especially if you don’t like exercising with food in your stomach. Check with your doctor or a dietitian before you start chugging BCAA supplements.