Amino Acids - Beta Alanine - Citrulline Malate
Rep by rep. Mile by mile. Breath by breath. Every muscle screams at you with pleas of mercy; every bone aches to its core from the pressure. Yet, you still don’t quit – you push on. By hook, or by crook, you will make it. You will succeed. You will win.
You see, you’re an athlete. You are someone defined to your core by the competitive drive to better yourself at all costs. You need neither trophies, nor accolades; neither cheers, nor recognition. You pay the sweat price for every gain marked in your battle-worn ledger, detailing the struggle your body has endured.
You’re an athlete, and so are we. We don’t make Core ABC for everyone, we make it for you and us. We use the most effective, scientifically-established ratio of BCAAs because we know it’s the difference between your first mile and your last. We include clinically-verified servings of beta-alanine, citrulline malate, and glutamine because we know your last rep depends on it. We know this because we know you, and we know ourselves.
Core ABC is the athlete’s BCAA. It was formulated by athletes, for athletes, for the needs only an athlete can understand. If you can’t say the same about your BCAA, then it may be time for a switch.
If one were to think of the body as a construction project, amino acids would be the most basic building materials: raw lumber, mortar, bricks, and so on. While the assembly of these building blocks is of course critically important to the function of the building – and one of the amino acids, leucine, controls its own assembly – the quality and availability of the materials themselves is arguably more important. Not enough concrete? The foundation cracks and the building falls.
Your body is the exact same way. It is comprised of various amino acids, both essential and non-essential, that comprise the cellular basis of each and every cell in your body. When it comes down to skeletal muscle, the three most important are known as the BCAAs – or branch chained amino acids. Comprised of leucine, isoleucine, and valine, these three little amino acids effectively control the rate at which your muscle grows (hypertrophies), its contractile force, its endurance, and so on – to say they are massively important is an understatement. For this reason, they form the basis of any competently-designed supplement protocol.
Collectively, as stated above, the branch-chained amino acids leucine, isoleucine, and valine are famous for their role in skeletal muscle protein synthesis and metabolism, and additionally comprise approximately one-third of all skeletal muscle protein. Of the three, leucine is both the most physiologically important with respect to muscle mass, and the most extensively studied. Data on leucine demonstrate this amino acid plays critical roles in stimulating skeletal muscle protein synthesis, and ribosomal biogenesis and assembly (the literal building of muscle tissue), along with playing a lesser role in insulin signaling and gluconeogenic processes. As a result of these diverse roles, leucine has been demonstrated to significantly stimulate skeletal muscle protein synthesis, and attenuate protein degradation, by both insulin-mediated and non-insulin mediated mechanisms.
Leucine’s insulin-mediated effects are largely the result of its activation of the classical insulin receptor substrate (IRS)/phosphatidylinositol (PI) 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt/mTOR signal transduction pathway. In this pathway, the bonding of a substrate (glucose) eventually activates a compound known as Akt. Once phosphorylated and activated, Akt signals the release of the famous mammalian target of rapmycin (mTOR). mTOR then increases the translation of muscle-cell ribosomal proteins that increase ribosome biogenesis, which is the literal production of proteins. Leucine has additionally been shown to positively regulate protein synthesis independent of insulin. In certain trials where rapamycin and leucine were co-administered, rapamycin showed only partial inhibition of leucine’s effects on muscle protein synthesis.
In more practical terms, there is a significant body of evidence demonstrating the positive effect of BCAA’s on athletic performance. Extensive studies in exercise-trained populations reveal that, collectively, BCAA’s may:
- Reduce total muscle soreness after intense resistance training, and/or further delay its onset.
- Decrease muscle recovery time between bouts of intense resistance exercise training.
- Increase lean body mass when used daily, in conjunction with diet and exercise.
While products with larger BCAA ratios (ratio of leucine, to isoleucine, to valine) have recently flooded the market, Core Nutritionals has remained with the gold standard of 2:1:1. This decision is made in recognition of the fact that, for all its potential benefits, there is no evidence demonstrating a realized effect of a larger BCAA ratio – and in fact, all the benefits mentioned above derive from evidence using the gold standard 2:1:1 ratio.