T Nation

Whey Protein and BCAA's Differences

Hey all,

I’m trying to determine the differences between BCAA supplementation and whey protein supplementation.

To my knowledge, BCAA’s are the building blocks for proteins, so I am confused as to why people would simultaneously supplement with both.

Any and all information, as well as links to similar questions answered / articles I may have missed in the search engine would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks T-Crew

Hey, there, MaxX. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. There are about 20 to 22 different amino acids, depending on who you talk to.

Out of all the different protein sources, whey protein is known to be high in BCAAs. Diets high in BCAA demonstrate greater signs of muscle preservation when the body is in a catabolic state (breakdown of muscle tissue). This is due to the ability of BCAA to improve nitrogen balance and serve as an energy source instead of breaking down skeletal muscle.

Why do people supplement with additional BCAAs, especially if they’re already supplementing with whey protein? Who knows. Some people believe that if a little bit is good, more has got to be better.

Honestly, rather than spending your money on amino acids, I think you’d get a bigger bang for the buck optimizing your PWO nutrition.