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The Beta Alanine vs BCAA Comparison + 5 Helpful Differences

The Beta Alanine vs BCAA Comparison + 5 Helpful Differences

Posted by Prolab Nutrition on 1st Mar 2022

Different people have different fitness goals. For instance, bodybuilders and athletes often have unusual fitness goals. Athletes desire to keep fat off and improve their conditioning, muscle definition, and joint flexibility. They also want to build muscle and enhance their physiques aesthetically. 

Using the right supplements can enhance one's efforts and help achieve superior results.

Supplements like Beta-Alanine and BCAA can be very effective in helping athletes improve their performance and recovery quicker. However, it is important to understand the difference between Beta-Alanine & BCAAs and how these two powerhouse supplements can work together.

Beta Alanine Vs BCAA F.A.Q.'s

What Is the Difference Between Beta-Alanine And BCAA?

Beta Alanine Vs BCAA

1. Beta-Alanine

Unlike other amino acids, Beta-Alanine isn't used to synthesize protein. Instead, the non-essential amino acid produces carnosine which is stored in the skeletal muscles. Carnosine eliminates lactic acid accumulation to prevent soreness and promote better workouts.

Beta-Alanine Featured Benefits

Beta-Alanine supports athletic performance by reducing lactic acid accumulation responsible for muscle soreness, discomfort, fatigue, weakness, nausea, etc., after exercising.

Reduces Lactic Acid Accumulation: 

Beta Alanine also creates additional benefits such as increased endurance. Beta-Alanine can reduce fatigue during resistance training, increase muscle endurance, and introduce other benefits like weight loss.

Immune Boosting Properties:

As an antioxidant, carnosine can boost immune system health by reducing oxidative stress and neutralizing free radicals.


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2. BCAA (Branded-chain amino acids)

BCAAs include three amino acids, namely, isoleucine, valine, and leucine. These essential amino acids work in many ways discussed below.

BCAA Featured Benefits

Boosts Muscle Growth: 

While Beta Alanine's main benefit is getting rid of lactic acid that accumulates during exercise, one of the main benefits of BCAA is boosting muscle growth. 

Repairs Muscle Damage: 

BCAAs have also been found to reduce tiny muscle tears common after exercise. Studies indicate that BCAAs reduce protein breakdown and creatine kinase levels during exercise, reducing muscle damage in the process. 

One notable study showed that supplementing with BCAA before strenuous exercise such as squats reduces muscle damage. As a result, BCAA supplements can speed up recovery.

Reduces Muscle Soreness:

While fatigue levels differ depending on exercise intensity, duration of exercise, nutrition, fitness levels, and environmental conditions, fatigue is inevitable after exercise.

During exercise, the muscles use BCAAs. The levels of amino acids reduce while the levels of tryptophan (another essential amino acid) increase. 

When tryptophan reaches the brain via the bloodstream, it is converted into a chemical (serotonin) that marks the onset of fatigue. Individuals who take BCAA have been found to have less exercise-related fatigue.


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The Differences Between Beta Alanine Vs BCAA

The main difference lies in how Beta-Alanine and BCAA work and affect exercise performance. While Beta-Alanine works by reducing lactic acid build-up, which delays fatigue and increases time to exhaustion, BCAAs build and rebuild muscles.

It's also worth noting that Beta-Alanine isn't an essential amino acid while BCAAs are.

There's also a difference in how endurance is improved. Beta-alanine reduces lactic acid build-up while BCAAs improve endurance through serotonin. 

Supplementing with BCAA before/during a workout can result in less fatigue and, subsequently, more endurance.

Can You Take Beta-Alanine And BCAA Together?

Yes! BCAA and Beta-Alanine are highly effective when taken together. The two supplements synergistically work together to increase athletic endurance, improve performance, and build & recovery muscle faster.

What Are The Benefits Of Taking Together?

Combining Beta-Alanine and BCAA is preferable before training as part of a pre-workout routine. Doing so is an effective combination for athletes because Beta Alanine reduces lactic acid accumulation, and BCAAs reduce muscle damage, boost growth and reduce fatigue. 

Consuming Beta Alanine and BCAAs before training can reduce fatigue and protect muscles during intense training sessions. The two can also be taken after a workout to boost recovery.

Beta-Alanine and BCAAs Dosing

Generally, you should consume 2 to 5mg of Beta-Alanine daily. Excess amounts can cause undesirable effects such as Paraesthesia (tingling feeling in the skin, especially on the neck, face, and hands). This side effect increases with severity as the dosage increases. 

Paraesthesia can be avoided by decreasing the dosage to approximately 800mg daily. Too much Beta-Alanine can also reduce taurine levels in the body since the amino acid can compete against taurine absorption in the muscles.

According to WHO guidelines dating back decades (1985), adults should take 15mg of BCAA daily for every pound of body weight. However, recent studies suggest you should take more BCAA (as much a 65mg) for every pound. 

Ideally, women should consume 75% less BCAA than men due to their lower muscle mass. Athletes can use more BCAA's (10-20g) daily because of strenuous activity.

High-Quality Beta-Alanine And BCAA Supplements

Individuals will only experience Beta-Alanine and BCAA benefits if they use high-quality supplements. It doesn't matter when you take Beta-Alanine or BCAA or how you take the supplements if the quality is inferior. 

Prolab nutrition allows athletes and fitness enthusiasts to customize supplements to meet their training goals.

Prolab's BCAA Plus contains added vitamins B6 and C to boost the immune system and support muscle preservation. The supplement is an anti-catabolic formula to protect lean muscles and offers more benefits than other BCAA supplements.

Prolab's Beta-Alanine Extreme is a high-quality Bela Alanine supplement scientifically formulated to support intense workouts and delay fatigue. The supplement contains Carnosyn Beta-Alanine and L-Histidine that delay lactic acid build-up and extend workout intensity.