Starkie's Corner: BCAAs, CoQ10

Branched Chain Amino Acids

BCAA’s (Branched Chain Amino Acids) in the news. For years the use of BCAA’s (Branched Chain Amino Acids) has been a staple for many athletes. BCAA’s are used for endurance and muscle building and muscle soreness. There are two camps, many who are skeptical of BCAAs and the true believers. The ‘skeptics’ have said there are no solid studies (double blind human) on BCAA’s, while those that use them tout their results. A recent double blind placebo controlled study with the following mix, (essential amino acid usually 8-10 amino acids-free form blend including 20-40% of the BCAA- L-Leucine at 11-20 grams) taken twice daily with food was used. This blend showed a significant improvement in lean muscle mass and strength. About 25 healthy individuals aged 65-75 were participants. Additional research has been done with aging individuals and their use of BCCA amino acids with positive results.

Coenzyme Q10 Supplementation Linked to Improved Heart Function

CoQ10 has been the focus for cardiovascular health and antioxidant benefits for years. CoQ10 functions in the mitochondria as an oxidative/redux reaction components for cellular ATP-energy manufacturing. Additionally Co Q 10 acts as a cellular antioxidant. CoQ10 has a tendency to decrease with age. In fact some studies have noted a 40% reduction of Co Q10 in an aging retina and may be attributed to macular degeneration.

A study conducted with 420 individuals using 100mg of COQ10 three times daily of supplemental Co Q 10 for two years indicated a significant reduction in long term major adverse cardiovascular events. Results were 15 % vs. 26% for placebo. It is noted that these individuals in the Q-SYMBIO trial had congestive heart failure. Additionally there were no adverse side effects noted by the physicians administrating the test and it was a physician monitored test.

By Starkie Sowers

References:

  1. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition (2016) 70, 182–188; doi:10.1038/ejcn.2015.91; published online 17 June 2015 Clinical Nutrition Double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot trial of L-Leucine-enriched amino-acid mixtures on body composition and physical performance in men and women aged 65–75 years OPENT Ispoglou, H White, T Preston, S McElhone, J McKenna and K Hind, Carnegie Faculty, School of Sport, Leeds Beckett University, Leeds, UK, Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, ScotlandCorrespondence: Dr T Ispoglou, Carnegie Faculty, School of Sport, Leeds Beckett University, Headingley Campus, Fairfax Hall, Leeds LS6 3QS, UK. E-mail: t.ispoglou@leedsbeckett.ac.uk http://www.nature.com/ejcn/journal/v70/n2/abs/ejcn...
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