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Amino Acid Recommendations
1. Supplement with 5 – 10 grams of glutamine during a pre-exercise meal approximately 1-2 hours before a long exhaustive training session (e.g. greater than 3 hours).
2. Supplement with 0.5 – 1.0 gram/hour during training (included in a carbohydrate, electrolyte drink).
3. Supplement with approximately 5 grams of glutamine immediately post-exercise (included in a recovery drink).
No problems of toxicity from glutamine supplementation have been observed. However, it is important to note that glutamine is unstable in solution and should not be kept in that form for more than a few hours at room temperature, and should not be added to hot drinks. In addition, ingesting single amino acids can cause imbalances of others, so ingesting as an ingredient in a sports drink or whole food is preferred.
It is recommended that endurance athletes consume BCAA’s at moderate levels in order to assure no negative effects. However, supplementing at moderate doses can offer a reduced incidence of infection, improved mental energy and assurance of adequate levels of a circulating amino acid pool.
1. The breakdown of protein, particularly BCAA’s occurs as carbohydrate stores decline. This happens primarily in long exhaustive exercise. The first line of defense is to keep a healthy level of blood sugar by supplementing with a carbohydrate drink during intense exercise and lasts longer than 1 hour. Supplement with 45-80 grams of carbohydrate in a 6-8% solution per hour of exercise.
2. The release of serotonin (the fatigue hormone) occurs when BCAA’s decline and tryptophan increases. Supplementing with BCAA’s during exercise may help maintain a healthy ratio. Supplement with a carbohydrate-electrolyte drink that contains BCAA’s during exhaustive endurance exercise. Consume 2 – 6 grams of BCAA’s per hour of exercise (no ill effects have been shown with up to 30 grams per day).
3. Consider supplementing BCAA’s following long exhaustive exercise. This will help you remain mentally and physically strong through consecutive days of hard endurance training through improved immune response and reduced incidence of infection. Supplement with 4 – 6 g BCAA’s following your hardest training sessions.
4. Consider BCAA supplementation if you participate in extensive endurance training and ingest an inadequate amount of carbohydrate in your daily eating program.
It has been theorized that supplementing with BCAA’s in doses considerably larger than what is recommended can cause some adverse effects like inhibiting the absorption of other amino acids, slowing water absorption in the gut and can potentially increase the need for thiamin. A rule of thumb is to only consume the recommended amount of amino acids.