• #10-3. Benefits and Usage of Amino Acid IVNT


    Essential and Non-essential Amino Acids

    In the human body, protein is degraded into amino acids before it is absorbed and utilized. Therefore, the nutritional value of protein is dependent on the types of its amino acid composition. Some amino acids are synthesized in the body and some need to be supplemented through food intake. Non-essential amino acids are synthesized through intermediary metabolites of saccharides, nitrogen, or essential amino acids. On the other hand, essential amino acids are not synthesized in our body or synthesized in amounts too small to have any biologic function and need to be replenished through food intake. Adults need eight essential amino acids; valine, leucine, isoleucine, methionine, threonine, lysine, phenylalanine, and tryptophan. Children need nine including the eight above and histidine. Recently, arginine was added to the list of essential amino acids needed in children.

    Histidine and arginine are considered essential amino acids in children because they are not synthesized in amounts sufficient to release growth hormones. Adults are able to synthesize histidine and arginine through urea cycle.


    Image 3. Branched chain amino acid.


    Branched Chain Amino Acid (BCAA)

    BCAA refers to three amino acids; valine, leucine and isoleucine (Image 3). BCAA mainly promotes muscle synthesis and takes up over a third of amino acids used in muscle protein. It also helps maintain muscle mass and strength by forming strong bond between muscle cells. Therefore, BCAA is a very important amino acid for body builders or marathoners who perform strenuous activities regularly.

    Valine is needed in muscle regeneration, brain activation and emotional stability. Leucine is involved in wound recovery, blood sugar stabilization, muscle cell metabolism and hemoglobin generation. Isoleucine, along with leucine, is involved in muscle cell metabolism and hemoglobin generation.

    BCAA is important for muscle strength but is particularly important for the liver. Protein synthesis and metabolism are carried out in the liver which can stress out the liver. The key benefit of BCAA is that it does not impact the liver as it is metabolized in the muscle, not in the liver. BCAA is also known to promote liver regeneration through helping hepatic growth hormone (HGH) activation.


    [Ad. ▶HYPERION(Nd:YAG) - Manufacturer: LASEROPTEK(www.laseroptek.com)

    HELIOSⅡ/LOTUSⅡ/HYPERION – Manufacturer: LASEROPTEK(www.laseroptek.com)


    In a recent study, BCAA was found to have protective effect against liver cirrhosis and liver cancer. The treatment goal for liver cirrhosis is not complete recovery but preserving the remaining liver function and preventing progression into cancer.  

    Numbers such as 95% or 90% are written on the label of some amino acid solution vials. Patients misunderstand these numbers to indicate the amino acid concentration. If BCAA/EAA comes before the number, it represents the proportion of BCAA in essential amino acids and if BCAA/TAA is written, it refers to the proportion of BCAA in all amino acids. I recommend solutions with a high BCAA content in patients with liver dysfunction, and solutions with high essential amino acid content in patients with kidney dysfunction. 


    -To be continued

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