• Should you take BCAAs
    Blog,  Diet,  Nutrition,  Sports nutrition,  Supplements

    Should you take BCAAs?

    Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) is the name given to three of the nine essential amino acids. BCAAs are sold as a sports supplement to increase muscle synthesis and recovery. Today we answer the question: Should you take BCAAs? What are BCAAs? BCAAs or branched-chain amino acids are leucine, isoleucine and valine. They are essential amino acids (EAAs), meaning they cannot be made by our bodies and must be taken from the diet. Unlike other amino acids, BCAAs are not metabolised in the liver (1, 2) but in skeletal muscle (2). They can be oxidised and used as energy (2, 3). BCAA supplements are commonly used in athletic populations. Most supplements…

  • what is glycine
    Blog,  Diet,  Health,  Nutrition,  Supplements

    What is glycine?

    If you remember chemistry or biochemistry from high school, the word glycine might ring a bell. If not, read on to answer the question: what is glycine? What is glycine? Glycine is the simplest amino acid. Amino acids are chemical compounds that contain an amino group (NH2) and carboxyl group (-COOH). The chain between is composed of carbon and hydrogen atoms and its length defines the amino acid. Amino acids are the building blocks of all proteins. Amino acids are normally categorised in non-essential (produced by our bodies) and essential (which must be consumed in our diets). Glycine is a non-essential amino acid; however to be more exact it should…

  • protein quality and quantity
    Blog,  Diet,  Health,  Nutrition

    Protein quality and quantity

    Protein is an essential components of our bodies. Besides being used in many tissues, it also forms signal molecules, hormones, etc. This is why protein quality and quantity are important. What is protein A protein is a collection of peptides, which are collections of amino acids. These can be non-essential (i.e. we can make them in our bodies) or essential (i.e. we need to obtain them from food). Protein is also one of the 3 macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates, fat), i.e. the components in food that contribute to energy intake. Each gram of protein contributes ~17kJ (4kcal). Foods that are high in protein include meat, fish, eggs and dairy products. Legumes,…