T Nation

Leucine Over BCAAs?

After reading that the same transporters are used for all the BCAAs, and that therefore the BCAAs will compete with each other for these same transporters, I am wondering if it’s best to sip on just leucine (or megadose, as CT and CP prescribe) instead of BCAAs.

Or are there benefits to the other two aminos? I know leucine is supposedly the one amino that sparks muscle protein synthesis. What do the other two aminos do?

They are all (by which I mean all the BCAA’s) preferentially burned for energy by muscle, compared to other amino acids.

Of course amino acids aren’t and shouldn’t be the principle fuel, but the fact that muscle will burn more of these amino acids than non-BCAA’s suggests that, on net, dietary intake of amino acids might be more balanced if the profile is, instead of being almost exactly the same as muscle tissue (as for example meat is) there was a greater intake of BCAA’s to compensate for their being more likely to be burned.

Just as an unproven theory.

From the practical standpoint, BCAA consumption is precisely as beneficial as was the case previously.

I would interpret this matter as being that it was found here that for the purposes of the Surge Workout Fuel leucine alone was better than BCAA’s, and for supplementing meals leucine alone also works very well, but that doesn’t rule out that BCAA’s at some point during the day other than during the workout ought not still be beneficial.

Just opinion, I definitely don’t have data on it.

That is precisely the explanation I was hoping to hear.

Thanks for chiming in and I hope the holidays have been good to you and the family.

Thanks! And I hope the same for you too!

Bill,

Thank you for providing your expertise and chiming in here. I currently have some spare Biotest BCAAs and Leucine. I am also currently in a fat loss phase. My question is: what is the best way to incorporate these two supplements into a fat loss period. Should Leucine be used PWO and BCAA intake spread throughout the day? Thanks in advance for your input.

As pure guesswork, I would target the leucine to immediately preworkout, optionally during workout as well, and optionally some meals of the day; and the BCAA’s to, in order of estimated importance:

An hour or so before workout
On arising
Before bed
Other times spread through the day

Not all of the above need be done.

As for immediately postworkout I don’t know which the better choice would be: either is a good choice.

I know that 300andabove did a whole profile of CT’s locker room. I think someone needs to do one for Bill, too.

See, I am positive that two of the best times to take leucine are upon rising (with first intake of food) and with the last meal of the day.

After that, I am not sure if pre-workout is better than post-workout, but it probably does not matter much if nutrient intake is adequate during these times.

Not sure if EAAs are worth throwing in with leucine…is it poor form to hijack your own thread? :slight_smile:

[quote]Trenchant wrote:
I know that 300andabove did a whole profile of CT’s locker room. I think someone needs to do one for Bill, too. [/quote]

Not sure what this means? (Just simple ignorance)

If it means cataloging what I post, that would really just sum up to:

Monday: Yaddity-yaddity-yaddity
Tuesday: Blah-blah-blah-blah

Etc.

Most surely a thankless and excessively laborious task.

On the EAA’s:

Actually, of course as you know, BCAA’s make up a large part of the essential amino acids.

As a good EAA blend is more costly than BCAA’s, myself what I do is use 1 tbsp each BCAA’s and EAA’s about 45 min preworkout, which is also pretty much on arising – nothing magic about the timing, just what is convenient for me – and 2 tbsp BCAA’s post workout. There’s no reason to particularly recommend it, it simply is what I do. Other than that I now rely on the Surge Workout Fuel for leucine during the workout, and the leucine powder for anything else during the day.

Bill,

Thanks again, you are an unbelievable resource. I greatly appreciate your expert insight and prompt response. Stay strong.

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
Trenchant wrote:
I know that 300andabove did a whole profile of CT’s locker room. I think someone needs to do one for Bill, too.

Not sure what this means? (Just simple ignorance)

If it means cataloging what I post, that would really just sum up to:

Monday: Yaddity-yaddity-yaddity
Tuesday: Blah-blah-blah-blah

Etc.

Most surely a thankless and excessively laborious task.

[/quote]

Just saying my thanks. I feel like you’ve become a more accessible, detail oriented John Berardi of this site. No yaddity’s or blah’s. Just definate knowledge of most topics at hand.