The Indispensable Amino acidsNils Lind
You can read Annis Newsletter in the following languages:
A heavy uncomfortable heat is filling this lovely august morning, as I am getting ready in front of my keyboard with a bottle of water of the finest quality next to me. While I continue on my newsletter for next month where the everyday is once again setting in, children are starting school, parents are starting work, and the migratory birds from the different countries are settling in. Life is normalizing again, at least as much as possible with more or less restrictions.
Most people have had their summer vacation and have perhaps been less focused on their health, but now all their power is needed to handle the weekdays and all the challenges, great experiences, and joys they bring. It is therefore again time to think about your health to conserve or cultivate a strong and functioning immune system. As an extension to my previous newsletter, which was about the necessary vitamins and minerals, have I chosen to continue this month’s newsletter with indispensable amino acids.
If we are a bit attentive, then we will again and again experience nature’s own healing power, which provides our bodies with the ability to cure ourselves.
The amino acids are the building blocks of life. Without them there would not be any life, and they are first and foremost a vital part in the formation of our body. Proteins are made up of amino acids. Every single amino acid has its own special function and activity. Together with vitamins and minerals are they largely responsible for our body’s own ability to normalize, regenerate, and heal.
The free amino acids have the same priority in my own dietary supplement program as vitamins and minerals, and I think it is amazing the positive effect they have on my health. When I started to interest myself with amino acids, then it was like a brave new dynamic world opened up for me with many possibilities to maintain and improve health in many different areas, such as virus, allergy, diabetes, cardiovascular, and even alcoholism.
In order for us to take advantage of the amino acids that are bundled up in the proteins, does the degradation start in the stomach and the right enzymes transforms the proteins into peptides and they are then broken down into amino acids with the help of peptidase released from the pancreas. The amino acids are then absorbed in the small intestine and transported via the blood, to the liver, which then ensures that they are send out to the cells, where they are used to form new proteins.
There are 20 different types of amino acids, which are divided into essential and non-essential. 8 of them are essential. That they are essential simply means that they have to be obtained from external sources like adequate nutrition or supplements if needed. The non-essential amino acids on the other hand can be produced by our body itself as long as we provide the necessary components for this with the protein which we consume through our diet.
Amino acids are found in the foods we eat, there are, for instance, plenty of different amino acids in eggs. Eggs has the highest percentage of essential amino acids, as far as we know. It does not matter how you consume your eggs, if they are boiled or as an omelet etc. Egg consists of 44.8% EAA (essential amino acids).
Dairy products are also rich in amino acids.
Chicken consists of 43.2% EEA. I personally love chicken. I always buy them as free range and ecological, so the chickens have led a good life. Chicken can be prepared on a pan, boiled, or made in the oven, with plenty of lovely side dishes. Chicken is an especially good source of isoleucine, which is great for things like stress, anorexia, and diabetes. Isoleucine is found in large concentrations in muscle tissue. It has been shown on test animals, that a lack of isoleucine can cause shaking and cramps.
The abovementioned reminds me of a personal experience I once had when I visited my friend in Mexico. I was suffering from food poisoning due to some unclean bananas and felt sick as a dog with vomiting and diarrhea. My friend quickly went to the nearest street food shop with vegetables and free-range chicken and asked them to slaughter and ready a chicken for his sick girlfriend. After a few minutes the chicken was ready and he quickly came back home and boiled the chicken for a medicinal soup, which he almost forced down my throat. It worked absolute wonders, as my body was stressed due to the infection. A few hours later I felt healthy and fresh again. I am not sure I can recommend the abovementioned, but it worked wonders for me personally.
Beef contains all 8 essential amino acids, and especially high dosages of valine, leucine, and lysine, which has a positive effect on muscle protein synthesis. Some people have trouble digesting beef and for them it might be better with lean ground beef.
Salmon, tuna, and cod are also great sources of amino acids. Cod has a high percentage of amino acids, especially lysine. Lysine can be a great help against cold sores, it aids the immune system, and is important for the absorption of calcium. Shellfish is also great.
Of the vegetable products is it especially worth mentioning soya beans, which contain all 8 of the essential amino acids, so if you are a vegetarian or vegan, then soya is the easiest source of amino acids.
Quinoa also contains a high amount of the essential amino acids.
Flaxseeds, beans, lentils, rice, nuts, and almonds are also great sources of amino acids.
If you are a vegetarian, then you have to be mindful that it can be difficult to come up with a daily diet, that has a satisfactory amino acid balance, but dairy products and eggs are also a great help.
If you are vegan then it is important that you combine the foods in your diet, in a way that makes it complete. It has to be vary varied with a lot of coarse vegetables, plant-based oils, whole wheat products, seeds, nuts, fruits, and legumes.
Amino acids as dietary supplements
It is best to consume them with water or juice, but not with dairy products or other drinks that contains protein. The reason for this is, that it is best to take them without any competing proteins.
If you are taking any form of medication then you have to consult your doctor before you start taking any supplement of free amino acids. Some amino acids can have an effect on different types of medications.
Due to the limited length of this article have I chosen some of the most popular amino acids supplements.
- Arginine is a non-essential amino acid, which is found primarily in cheese, egg, milk, meat, nuts, and seeds. Arginine has lately gotten quite a bit of attention for its positive effects on the heart. It helps the blood vessels relax and improves circulation in the heart’s arteries and lessens chest pain.
Some men get a great benefit from arginine, because it improves blood circulation and thereby helps them, if they have trouble keeping an erection. Some people also experience a drop if suffering from high blood pressure. Diabetics often experience that they can increase their walking distance, before they get cramps or pain in the legs.
If you are suffering from herpes, then arginine can provoke an outbreak and should in these cases always be taken with lysine.
- Carnitine is my personal favorite, which I have no idea how I would live without. It is in the first row and self-producing heart strengthening, which delivers energy to the muscles in the first row of the heart muscle and brain. The edema, which often build up around a weak heart, can also be helped by carnitine, which I have personally experienced. Carnitine is primarily found in meat, making it very important for vegans and vegetarians to be mindful of any potential carnitine deficiency, especially if there is a disposition for heart disease.
Carnitine is also great at breaking down triglycerides.
Kidney disease can also sometimes be helped with carnitine. Dialysis patients can sometimes develop a carnitine deficiency if their treatment does not account for this.
- NAC – N-Acetyl-Cysteine. NAC has become very known in these times, it is cysteine, which has been stabilized and transformed to NAC. It is especially good for chronic bronchitis, asthma, cystic fibrosis, and many other conditions that involve the respiratory tract. It helps by loosening the slime in people that suffer from these types of conditions. Some people feel that it helps with the flu. Other people take it as a liver protection or for detoxing and cleansing. NAC helps build glutathione, which is one of nature’s most important antioxidants. The other two amino acids that contributes to the formation of glutathione, are glutamine and glycine.
- Pure cysteine is often a great help with hair loss and can help with different skin conditions.
- Glutamine has one of the broadest effects on the functions in the body. It is used to for instance to help with alcoholism, narcomania, depression, impotence, improving the immune system, and detoxing the liver. It can pass through the blood-brain barrier and thereby help with shock and stress. It is also assumed that it can help increase intelligence in mentally handicapped children. There are also many accounts from cancer patients that it can lessen the negative effects from treatment so its not so tough.
NOTE! It should never be taken by people with Parkinson.
- Taurine is the last amino acid I will include in this article. Taurine is one of my all-time favorites, which benefit me daily. Taurine is effective in many different situations, for instance with epilepsy, migraine, depression, high blood pressure, etc.It has vital importance for the heart and brain, and is taken by many people with weak hearts, but it is also great for the eyes, the gallbladder, and the circulatory system. It is found in all of the body’s membranes. Stress drains the body of taurine. The best sources are meat and fish.
Migraine can often be helped with three supplements, being B6, magnesium, and taurine.
I believe that the future will bring an increased focus and common knowledge about the amino acids and their behaviours.