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HomeHealth & FitnessBeta-Alanine: Creatine's Longer-Lasting Cousin - Supplements and Nutrition - Forums

Beta-Alanine: Creatine’s Longer-Lasting Cousin – Supplements and Nutrition – Forums

The Performance Advantage

This amino acid does what creatine can’t – it prolongs muscle performance in activities that last longer than 60 seconds.

Beta-Alanine: High Performance After 60 Seconds

Creatine works. Take it consistently and it’ll be there to support your ATP-PCr energy system so you can do more reps.

The trouble is, creatine is kind of like the guy who has attention deficit disorder. He’ll be right on point, concentration-wise, for 20, 30, or 40 seconds, possibly up to a minute, but after that his mind wanders. Same with creatine.

Once your set or session of chosen exercise activity extends beyond 60 seconds, creatine’s not much help. That wasn’t a problem in the past for lifters because they rarely did any lifting or exercise that lasted longer than maybe 40 seconds.

Enter CrossFit. And HIIT. And interval coaching. All these train modalities contain 1 to 5-minute lengthy bouts, sometimes with relaxation intervals lasting lower than 2 minutes. In instances like that, creatine merely sits on the sidelines.

For any exercise lasting for longer than 60 seconds or so, beta-alanine beats creatine. It’s a non-essential amino acid that, like a longer-lasting creatine, will increase the quantity of labor you are able to do at excessive intensities.

Does Beta-Alanine Actually Work?

Does Beta-Alanine Really Work?

Studies have consistently shown that beta-alanine increases strength, muscle-power output, training volume, high-intensity exercise performance, and aerobic capacity in a variety of sports.

Soccer players who ingested 3.2 grams of beta-alanine every day for 12 weeks increased their performance by 34.3 percent, compared to -7.6% in a group receiving placebo. Boxers who took 1.5 grams of beta-alanine four times a day increased the force of their punches by 20 times and the rate at which they threw punches by four times, compared to a placebo group.

Another study, this one involving competitive rowers, found that beta-alanine supplementation improved 2,000-meter rowing performance by 2.9 seconds, which is equivalent to at least a couple of scull lengths.

Even the military has found that there’s direct evidence supporting the use of beta-alanine to enhance combat-specific performance (even though they haven’t adopted its use, or for that matter, officially recommended any sports supplement).

And, since it’s a hybrid between GABA and L-glycine, two powerful neurotransmitters, plenty of scientists are also classifying beta-alanine as a secondary neurotransmitter, which is why users also benefit from its stimulatory effects.

How Does Beta-Alanine Improve Performance?

How Does Beta-Alanine Improve Performance?

Carnosine is a di-peptide molecule that’s made of two amino acids: histidine and, ta-da, beta-alanine.

If you ingest more beta-alanine, you create more carnosine. This is important because carnosine sucks up reactive oxygen species, which soar super-high during exercise. More importantly, at least more important to performance, carnosine protects against the build-up of hydrogen ions during high-intensity exercise.

This prevents pH from dropping, thus preventing the loss or diminution of enzyme function and muscle-excitation coupling that you need in order to keep on exercising.

Can I Get Enough Beta-Alanine From Whole Foods?

Can I Get Enough Beta-Alanine From Whole Foods?

The three or four of you out there that took Latin in school probably recognize that the word carnosine is derived from carnem, the Latin word for meat.

That should suggest to you that beta-alanine is found in meat and that there are no plant-based sources of the amino acid. However, you’d have to eat a small petting zoo’s worth of meat to get enough beta-alanine to have any discernible ergogenic effect.

Considering that the daily dose range of beta-alanine is between 1.6 to 6.4 grams, you’d have to Joey-Chestnut down between 400 and 1600 grams of chicken breast or 300 to 1200 grams of turkey breast per day.

Clearly, getting your beta-alanine through supplementation is easier on your alimentary tract.

What’s the Best Way to Take Beta-Alanine?

What’s the Best Way to Take Beta-Alanine?

Much like creatine, you may’t simply take beta-alanine proper now and anticipate it to kick in quarter-hour from now as you pull into the health club car parking zone. Beta-alanine takes its time and step by step builds up ranges of muscle carnosine.

In truth, the scale of particular person doses doesn’t even matter a lot. As an alternative, it’s the overall dose over time that impacts muscle carnosine ranges. Moreover, carnosine has a brilliant lengthy clearance price within the muscle, so just about the longer you are taking it, the higher you’ll be capable of carry out any type of train lasting between 1 and 5 minutes.

If, after some time period, you stopped taking it, ranges would decline on the price of roughly 2% each two weeks, which is glacial so far as clearance charges go. So take beta-alanine earlier than a exercise if it’s extra handy that method, nevertheless it doesn’t actually matter a lot whenever you take it.

All that being mentioned, beta-alanine can also be thought of a secondary neurotransmitter, that means that it has a stimulatory impact. Not like the endurance and strength-building capacities of beta-alanine that take a number of days to kick in, the stimulatory properties kick in inside minutes, at which level you would possibly really feel a gentle tingly feeling in your scalp or arms.

This phenomenon is known as “parasthesia.” It’s mildly annoying however painless, and it disappears shortly. That, by the best way, is the one identified facet impact of beta-alanine supplementation.

The place Do I Discover Beta-Alanine?

Where Do I Find Beta-Alanine?

Biotest doesn’t sell beta-alanine as a stand-alone product, preferring instead to use it as an ingredient in two separate products:

In Surge® Workout Fuel, beta-alanine is stacked with different ergogenic compounds like citrulline malate and betaine. All three of those, when mixed with Surge’s giant quantities of L-leucine and cyclic dextrin, maximize power and explosiveness whereas minimizing train fatigue.

Surge® Workout Fuel Gives a Lasting Reactive Pump You Can See and Feel – T Nation Biotest

In Spike® Hardcore Energy Drink, beta-alanine’s neurotransmitter capabilities add to these of acetyl-l-carnitine and caffeine that can assist you mentally and bodily muscle your method by means of a tricky exercise.

Spike® Hardcore Energy Drink – T Nation Biotest


If as a substitute you select to make use of beta-alanine as a stand-alone product, think about stacking it with issues like citrulline malate, useful carbohydrates, and BCAAs (which is what Surge® Exercise Gasoline has already completed for you).



  1. Artioli GG et al. Role of beta-alanine supplementation on muscle carnosine and exercise performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2010 Jun;42(6):1162-73. PubMed.
  2. Derave W et al. beta-Alanine supplementation augments muscle carnosine content material and attenuates fatigue throughout repeated isokinetic contraction bouts in skilled sprinters. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2007 Nov;103(5):1736-43. PubMed.
  3. Derave W et al. Muscle carnosine metabolism and beta-alanine supplementation in relation to train and coaching. Sports activities Med. 2010 Mar 1;40(3):247-63. PubMed.
  4. Donovan T et al. β-Alanine Improves Punch Pressure and Frequency in Beginner Boxers Throughout a Simulated Contest. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2012 Oct;22(5):331-7. PubMed.
  5. Hill CA et al. Affect of beta-alanine supplementation on skeletal muscle carnosine concentrations and excessive depth biking capability. Amino Acids. 2007 Feb;32(2):225-33. PubMed.
  6. Hoffman JR et al. β-Alanine supplementation and army efficiency. Amino Acids. 2015 Dec;47(12):2463-74. PubMed.

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