The Branched Chain Amino Acids, BCAAs, are leucine, isoleucine, and valine. These 3 amino acids can have a significant impact on your post-exercise recovery and subsequent workout performance as they are heavily catabolised during intense exercise.
The benefits of BCAAs are far-reaching, and include things like:
Increased lean muscle growth
Taking BCAAs after training will increase protein synthesis, which is the conversion of dietary proteins into muscle tissue. If you want to get even better results from your workouts, you need to take BCAAs straight after training.
Less muscle soreness
Delayed onset muscle soreness, also known as DOMS, is part and parcel of intense training. But, using BCAAs can help speed up muscle damage repair, leading to less severe and shorter DOMS. If you are fed up with being crippled by post-workout DOMS, BCAAs may help.
Less post-workout fatigue
Intense workouts can leave you feeling exhausted. That’s not a problem if you are a pro athlete who trains for a living, but for those that have to go to work, all that fatigue can be a real problem. The good news is that BCAAs have been shown to boost post-workout energy, so you can get on with your day even after a gruelling leg workout.
Muscle preservation during a low-calorie diet
If you want to get shredded, you need to eat less and pump up the cardio. While this will lead to fat loss, it could also mean you lose muscle too. Not good! Supplementing with BCAAs can help preserve muscle, so you just lose fat. The result? No loss of strength and a much better-looking physique!
Taking BCAAs before or during a workout can help you train harder and longer. Instead of trying to use your muscles for fuel, your body will burn BCAAs instead. This also means less muscle breakdown, so you’ll build muscle faster.
Faster fat loss
BCAAs can speed up your metabolism for more rapid fat loss. Taken between meals, they can also help ward off hunger and cravings.
Finally, losing muscle while you diet will lower your metabolic rate. As you already know, taking BCAAs during a low-calorie diet can help preserve your existing muscle mass, and that will stop the metabolic slow-down that often accompanies a weight loss diet.
So, how do you use Beyond BCAA?
Simply mix 1-2 scoops with 8-10 ounces (240 - 295 ml) of water and consume during your workout or throughout the day to maximise muscle recovery and limit muscle tissue breakdown. Simple!
But, does that mean that’s the ONLY way to use this great-tasting product? Absolutely not!
Here are ten new ways to use Beyond BCAA outside of your workouts!
1. Guilt-free soda
On a warm day, nothing quenches your thirst like an ice-cold soda. Unfortunately, soda is also one of the unhealthiest things you can drink! Regular soda contains so much sugar it’s basically obesity in a can. Diet sodas are loaded with artificial ingredients that are almost as unhealthy as sugar. Skip the soda and mix a scoop or two of BCAAs with some iced sparkling water. Not only is it super-refreshing, but it’s also good for you, and that’s something you can’t say about soda.
2. BCAA Jell-O
We all know that if you want to be lean and healthy, you can’t eat too many desserts. But knowing and doing are two very different things! If you have a sweet tooth, you may find it all but impossible to resist the temptation to eat sugary desserts. You can beat your sugar cravings and enjoy all the benefits of BCAAs by making BCAA-infused sugar-free Jell-O. You’ll need to buy some sugar-free Jell-O first. Off you go; we’ll wait… Now, simply make up your Jell-O as instructed on the packet and add a scoop of your favourite-flavoured Beyond BCAA. The result? A sweet, refreshing dessert that won’t derail your diet! Just chill and enjoy.
3. BCAA ice cubes
Ice cubes are a summer staple, so why not make them more functional by making them out of BCAAs? Simply mix up 8-10 ounces of Beyond BCAA with water and then pour the mixture into an ice cube tray. Freeze and then add a few to your beverage of choice for a small but useful BCAA boost!
4. BCAA gummies
Just because Beyond BCAA is a drink mix doesn’t mean you can’t eat your BCAAs if you prefer. Make these BCAA gummies so you can snack on amino acids too! All you need is some Beyond BCAA, 2-3 sachets of gelatin powder, some warm water, and some confectioner’s sweet molds. For fun, why not track down some bear-shaped sweet molds and make your own BCAA-infused Gummy Bears? To make your gummies, mix your gelatin with two cups of warm water and a scoop or two of Beyond BCAAs. Pour the mixture into your molds and then refrigerate to set. Do not freeze! To stop them sticking, try lightly greasing the molds with a little coconut oil. Once they are set, carefully remove from the mold and enjoy a few whenever you need a candy/BCAA fix!
5. BCAA popsicles
Who doesn’t love popsicles on a hot summer’s day? They quench your thirst and cool you down all at the same time. But, like most commercial sweet treats, most popsicles are also high in sugar and artificial additives. Beat the heat without rotting your teeth or derailing your diet with homemade BCAA popsicles. All you need is some popsicle moulds. Make up a serving or two of Beyond BCAA and then pour it into your moulds. Put the sticks in and then put them in the freezer to set. No moulds? No problem! You can improvise by using plastic disposable cups and teaspoons. This really does work! Then, once they are set, enjoy your homemade, sweet, refreshing treat!
6. BCAA Mocktails
While this might not be alcoholic, it’s a big hit at HQ. It could also be an excellent way to avoid hangovers and take the healthy route when you want to sit back, relax and enjoy a drink. Simply choose an appropriate Beyond BCAA flavour and mix it with some sparkling water. Why not add pineapple-flavour Beyond BCAA to make a muscle-building Piña Colada? Or how about a better strawberry daiquiri? BCAA Mocktails are not a bad idea if you are trying to lose weight or don’t want to disrupt tomorrow’s workout with a raging hangover.
7. BCAA super smoothies
Store-bought fruit smoothies are invariably loaded with sugar. A lot of people buy these drinks because they think they are healthier than soda, and while fruit from almost any source will do you good, if it’s in the form of fruit-flavoured syrup, it’s one of the least healthy things you can drink.
Make a healthier fruit smoothie by using Beyond BCAA instead of high sugar fruit-flavoured syrups.
Just take a few pieces of very ripe fruit, a couple of cups of water, and any flavour of Beyond BCAA. Pop all the ingredients in a blender, along with a few ice cubes for a thicker, smoother texture, and blitz on high for 30 seconds.
The result? A nutrient-dense, high-fiber smoothie that’s also free from added sugars.
8. Better flavoured yogurt
Plain yogurt is incredibly healthy. It’s not just high in protein, it also contains probiotics which are good for your digestive health. The calcium is also useful for stronger muscle contractions and faster fat loss. It’s a genuine superfood!
However, plain yogurt is also an acquired taste, which is why flavoured yogurts are so popular. Unfortunately, flavoured yogurts usually contain high sugar syrups and are often processed, so they have next to no good nutrition left in them.
Preserve the healthful benefits of your plain yogurt while improving the taste by adding half a scoop of Beyond BCAA per cup.
This will not only improve the taste, but it will increase the muscle-building benefits of this already super superfood.
9. The Beyond BCAA challenge
You’ve heard of the cinnamon challenge? Simply take a measure of Beyond BCAA powder and eat it in 60 seconds or less. Once you’re done, have a few sips of water to wash it down. This is also great for when you don’t have a shaker, or you’re on the go!
10. Just drink it!
Okay, we’ve been having some fun with these alternative ways to use Beyond BCAA, and hopefully you’ll love making mocktails or Jell-O with it. Lastly, it’s important to remind you how vital BCAAs are. If you are serious about getting the most from your workouts, BCAAs are a must. So, mix your Beyond BCAA with water and just drink it. It’ll do you good. That said, if you can convince someone to eat a scoop, that’s fine too!
Wrapping up, whatever you are training for, Beyond BCAAs will help you get there faster. Great for boosting recovery, crucial for building muscle, good for rehydration, and helpful for boosting workout performance, this is one useful, versatile supplement. Whether you just drink it, make it into popsicles, or use it to make mocktails, it’s good to know that consuming more BCAAs will do you nothing but good.