When you are involved in an intense workout, the acid will build up in your muscles, resulting in fatigue. However, by supplementing with beta-alanine, you can regulate acid in your muscles and prevent fatigue. This also means you will improve the length of time of performing high-intensive workouts before you experience exhaustion.
What Beta-Alanine Is
Beta-alanine is basically a non-essential amino acid. Many amino acids are simply building blocks of proteins, though your body can use beta-alanine to produce other chemicals.
Since your body produces beta-alanine, you don’t have to consume food containing the amino acid. So, what does beta-alanine do? Usually, it is part of carnosine that affects the performance and size of muscles.
How It Works
It works by increasing the carnosine levels in your body. When you ingest beta-alanine supplements, they link with L-histidine to form carnosine.
This carnosine serves as an intracellular proton buffer to protect against pH drops. It is often stored in the cells. In response to increased acidosis levels, carnosine buffers acidity by binding with H+, allowing you to exercise longer.
Rock climbers, cyclists, runners, and other endurance athletes find beta-alanine helpful before a challenging competition or workout. And it might even be more helpful for vegetarian and vegan athletes. These beta-alanine benefits include the following:
1. Athletic Performance
A common use of beta-alanine is to serve as a performance supplement. According to researchers, beta-alanine increases carnosine levels in muscles. This carnosine is commonly known for regulating calcium and pH in the muscle. It also has antioxidant impacts that protect cells against damage.
2. Improve Brain Health
Powerful antioxidative components are often found in carnosine. These components are strong antiglycan and help protect the brain and, at the same, support cognitive function and mental acuity. It also helps to speed up mental function, increase focus, support memory, decrease anxiety, and delay mental fatigue.
3. Reduce Lactic Acid and Delay Fatigue
A few human studies showed that supplementing with beta-alanine delays exhaustion and fatigue. An analysis of over 200 people shows that the supplement improves high-intensity workouts lasting more than one minute. A study of the subjects also found that supplementing with beta-alanine helps reduce the buildup of lactic acid during an anaerobic performance of high intensity. This, in turn, helps delay fatigue, too.
4. Improve Peak Performance and Endurance
Beta-alanine supplements have statistically demonstrated significant improvement in peak capacity and exercise endurance across different sports, like cycling, HIIT, rowing, and sprinting.
According to researchers, cyclists also see an increase of 12% in improved peak power output after two months, while highly trained rowers saw improvement in their rowing speed after ten minutes of using beta-alanine supplements. If combined with sprinting faster and rowing harder, athletes can improve their competitiveness and athletic capability.
In a Nutshell
Beta-alanine supplements improve performance by reducing muscle fatigue and improving exercise capacity. With its anti-aging and immune-enhancing properties, you can also benefit from beta-alanine in other ways.
Although your body produces beta-alanine, you can get the amino acid in supplements and food containing carnosine. If you prefer taking supplements, experts recommend a dosage of two to five grams every day.