For the longest time, there has been a debate as to if you should get all of your amino acids from whole foods alone, or if supplementing with amino acids like EAAs is the way to go. To be honest, either is truly fine. However, while I would always recommend whole foods over supplements whenever possible, amino acid supplements do have their place – as do many supplements for that matter. But, when it comes to amino acids, for years many focused on BCAAs (what were considered the big three – leucine, isoleucine, and valine), yet essential amino acids (EAAs) have been found to be the powerhouse when it comes to building lean muscle mass and what should be focused on. Let’s dig a little deeper and discuss amino acid supplements versus food.
Amino acids (such as EAAs) that come from whole goods are, indeed, an optimal source. You can consume things such as chicken breast, beef, tuna, salmon, flank steak, tilapia, and turkey breast – all of which would give you anywhere from 5.2g to 6.6g of BCAAs for six ounces of any of the above mentioned. Not bad in the grand scheme of things. These sources also contain an ample supply of all EAAs needed for muscle growth.
The only problem here is the quantity of food you need to consume in order to take in those additional amino acids. If you have no issues consuming additional food throughout the day, then you will have no issue with the added volume needed. However, a problem many people face is trying to squeeze in more food during the day without it becoming an inconvenience or even an interruption in their productive day.
Where EAA supplements truly shine is convenience. You don’t need to prepare food, sit down, eat it, and then wait for the body to break it down and shuttle the nutrients throughout the body to the muscles to aid in recovery. You simply scoop your EAA powder into a shaker bottle full of water, shake it up, and drink. It’s literally that simple. You’re done in a matter of a minute depending on how much water you use and how quickly you drink it.
Not only that, but your body can more quickly utilize the amino acids from the liquid form because your body doesn’t need to break down the whole food option into a useable form. This allows for quicker absorption and recovery.
If you are dieting, EAA powder can help provide you with all of the essential amino acids your body needs, without adding all of the additional calories you would find by adding a whole food option.
You could even sip the EAA mixture throughout the day too if you wished. Many people enjoy the flavor of their amino acid powder and therefore carry their shaker around with them, not only to help with hydration throughout the day, but to also be taking in a constant supply of amino acids.
Additionally, there are some essential amino acid supplements that bring you even more value from a health standpoint by adding additional ingredients, such as electrolytes, which can reduce muscle cramps, help with overall hydration, balance blood acidity, and even improve muscle function.
So, while you could consume whole foods to take in additional amino acids during the day, supplementing with an EAA powder has many more advantages to help you reach your health and fitness goals. If this is of interest to you, and you appreciate the convenience aspect and not needing to eat more food and take up time, feel free to check out Rock Solid Nutrition EAA Pump. It comes in two amazing flavors (Cherry Limeade and Watermelon). Not only does this powder have 5g of BCAAs in the perfect 3:1:1 ratio, but it also contains all of the essential amino acids. To top things off, EAA Pump includes electrolytes for maximal performance and recovery as well as citrulline malate to enhance your pump in the gym and improve blood flow.