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Betaine

Betaine

Introduction

Betaine is an amino acid that has the potential to support your fitness goals, health and well-being inside and outside of the gym.

Background

Found in high concentrations in quinoa, betaine was originally isolated from beetroots for its health promoting benefits. More recently, the health and fitness benefits of betaine have led to its huge growth in popularity with research supporting its ability to reduce fat, and boost muscle, strength and power gains.

What is it?

Betaine is composed of the amino acid glycine with three methyl groups attached to it. Betaine can be produced in the body from choline, and is also found in foods such as quinoa and beetroot. The benefits of betaine in the human body occur as a result of its function as a “methyl donor” because many important biochemical processes in the body rely on methylation. The most important example of this is when a methyl group is added to the amino acid homocysteine, forming methionine, which is important to muscle protein synthesis. This is one important way that betaine can help increase muscle growth, strength and size.

Benefits

Betaine has been found to support heart and liver health. There has also been research to suggest that betaine can support positive mood, joint recovery and insulin signalling. In terms of fitness, research suggests that betaine not only boosts muscular endurance, boosting the number of reps that can be completed before fatigue, but it can also increase muscle protein synthesis and anabolic gains through reduced cortisol during training and increased growth hormone post training. There has also been research supporting betaine’s impact on strength and power gains. In one study it was found that when athletes supplemented with betaine, they increased their strength by 25% and power by 20%.

Innermost Thoughts

Betaine is on the rise in terms of its recognition because of its health benefits and ability to take your lean mass and strength gains to new levels more quickly. Betaine is one of the ingredients in The Strong Plus (Booster No.1), which is recommended for those looking for muscle and strength gains. Pick it up from our Online Shop.

The Strong Plus

References

Hoffman, Jay R., et al. “Effect of betaine supplementation on power performance and fatigue.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 6.1 (2009): 1-10.
Pryor, J. Luke, S. A. Craig, and Thomas Swensen. “Effect of betaine supplementation on cycling sprint performance.” J Int Soc Sports Nutr 9.1 (2012): 12.
Cholewa, Jason M., et al. “Effects of betaine on body composition, performance, and homocysteine thiolactone.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 10.1 (2013): 39.
Apicella, Jenna M., et al. “Betaine supplementation enhances anabolic endocrine and Akt signaling in response to acute bouts of exercise.” European journal of applied physiology 113.3 (2013): 793-802.
Cholewa, Jason M., Lucas Guimarães-Ferreira, and Nelo Eidy Zanchi. “Effects of betaine on performance and body composition: a review of recent findings and potential mechanisms.” Amino acids (2014): 1-9.