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Wellness Blog #4: Branching Out

Written by Bobby Whisnand

The Truth About Branched Chain Amino Acids


From gallon jugs being carried around in the gym to supplement stores, amino acids continue to be a hot item throughout the fitness world. But do they really work or are they unnecessary and overkill? The answer depends on how they’re used. Let’s look at exactly what BCAAs (Branched Chain Amino Acids) are, what they do, and the most effective way to use them.


What Are They? – BCAAs are referred to as essential amino acids meaning we have to ingest them through food to use them. In other words, our body can’t make them without food. There are three specific BCAAs – Leucine, Isoleucine, and Valine.

What Do They Do? – These three amino acids stimulate the building of protein within skeletal muscle and can ward off muscle wasting during intense exercise and when under a very strict diet.

The Best Way to Use Them? – Through my research and my personal use of BCAAs, I have found two ways to use them effectively: First, drink them slowly throughout your workout but make sure you have waited 2-3 hours after your last meal. If you drink your BCAAs too soon with nutrition still being broken down from your last meal, the BCAAs will have a lot less effect. Remember, BCAAs are a source of fuel when your calories are low, but if your body has plenty to use, they will more or less pass on through. Secondly, take them right before sleep. This is a very effective time for BCAAs to do their job, but again, it needs to be 2-3 hours after you’ve eaten.


Although I feel many supplements available to us are unnecessary or overkill, BCAAs are one of the good ones, but only if your timing is right. Oh yeah, and that gallon jug, completely unnecessary!

Bobby Whisnand has spent nearly three decades using his knowledge, passion, and Texas-sized energy to motivate thousands to live their best lives possible. Endorsed by doctors, surgeons and other specialists across multiple disciplines Whisnand has helped thousands of patients, companies, and associations reach unprecedented levels of wellness.

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