Beta-alanine has become a very popular supplement. This is not surprising, since several studies show that it is a very effective and useful pre-workout supplement/ingredient. This supplement is also well known for its ability to give users a tingling sensation. This short tingling sensation is safe and is not noticeable anymore after using this supplement for a longer period. Nonetheless, the tingling sensation may surprise users which try a pre-workout product containing beta-alanine for the first time. Nowadays, many pre-workout supplements contain beta-alanine due to the benefits. However, many pre-workout products contain a lower amount of beta-Alanine than recommended by research. Therefore, it is often recommended to increase the daily intake of beta-alanine if you want to optimally improve athletic performance, even if you are using a pre-workout supplement.
Beta-Alanine is also known as:
CarnoSyn (brand name)
Functions of Beta-Alanine
Unfortunately, due to European legislation, we cannot describe all the effects and functions of this product. Not even if these have been confirmed by research. Nevertheless, we do our best to provide you with as much relevant information as possible.
Beta-alanine is a very popular pre-workout ingredient. This is not surprising given the potential effectiveness of this supplement . It is not only used by people who participate in strength training, but also by people who participate in endurance training.
Who can use beta-alanine ?
This amino acid is very suitable for people who are looking for an effective pre-workout. Due to its beneficial effects, this supplement is not only suitable for people who do strength training. After all, research has shown that this supplement can also be beneficial for people who participate in other sports, such as: running, cycling, wrestling and more .
How should I use beta-alanine ? / Dosages
Current research states that ~3-6g beta-alanine per day is an appropriate amount as a pre-workout. Unfortunately, current research regarding the optimal time of consumption is not completely clear. However, it seems that the time of consumption isn’t nearly as important as the consistent daily consumption of beta-alanine . Due to this, it does not matter as much at what time it is consumed. However, some people suggest that it should be consumed prior to exercise in order to get the most beneficial effects. This suggestion is made, since this gives users the ability to also benefit from the shorter term effects of beta-alanine during exercise.
Dosages can also be taken throughout the day. This can reduce the tingling sensation (paresthesia) that may accompany beta-alanine consumption. This tingling sensation is safe, and our body will build up a tolerance to it. However, some people prefer to spread dosages throughout the day to avoid this tingling effect.
Stacking / combining
Beta-alanine can be perfectly combined with various other supplements. Due to the many possible combinations, it is also commonly found in pre-workout supplements. However, many people use extra beta-alanine to maximize the beneficial effects of this amino acid. This is often done because of the limited amount of beta-alanine in most pre-workout supplements.
Research has also shown that beta-alanine can be combined well with creatine. This combination is recommended because together they may function well as a pre-workout. In addition, some people recommend combining this amino acid with a taurine supplement. This is suggested because high concentrations of beta-alanine could lower taurine levels . However, normal doses of beta-alanine have been shown to be too low to decrease taurine levels in our body . Therefore, this combination is not necessary when normal doses are used.
Where does beta-alanine come from ?
Beta-alanine is a naturally occurring beta-amino acid. Our body can produce it in small amounts, and it can also be found in small amounts in our food. The best food sources of beta-alanine are: meat, poultry and fish. Due to these sources, vegetarians and vegans have ~50% less carnosine in their muscles compared to omnivores . This makes a beta-alanine supplement even more important for vegetarians and vegans.
Carnosine supplement vs beta-alanine supplement
At first glance, it may seem beneficial to use a carnosine supplement instead of beta-alanine. However, pure carnosine is largely broken down before it can even reach our muscles .
L-Alanine supplement vs beta-alanine supplement
While their name is very similar, they are not substitutes for each other. L-alanine is a nonessential amino-acid which is used in protein synthesis. Beta-alanine is not used in protein synthesis and is mainly used as a pre-workout supplement.
Paraesthesia (tingling feeling)
Consuming beta-alanine may cause a short harmless tingling sensation on the skin . This tingling sensation is known as paresthesia, and there are no harmful effects associated with it . It is usually experienced in the neck, face, and the back of the hands. However, not everybody experiences this effect, since the paresthesia threshold varies from person to person. Furthermore, people seem to build a tolerance to the paresthesia over time. Due to this, the tingling feeling should reduce on its own over time.
Most people don’t mind the tingling sensation, and there are also people who like it. Fortunately, there are ways to avoid it for people that don’t like it. The best way to avoid it, is to use smaller dosages more times throughout the day. For example: 4 dosages of 1 gram per day, instead of 1 dosage of 4 gram per day.
Beta-alanine is commonly found in pre-workout supplements. However, the amount of beta-alanine in standard pre-workout supplements is often too low for optimal effects. For optimal effects, this amino acid should also be used daily. Due to these factors, it often concluded that a separate beta-alanine supplement is useful to obtain the maximum benefits.
Daily use is very important. However, we would like to emphasize that it is not a problem if consumption is occasionally forgotten. If not consumed for one day, the carnosine level in our muscles may drop slightly. However, this small drop will not be noticeable to most people.
Safety & competitive use
Different studies have shown that beta-alanine supplements are safe . The only side-effect is the short and harmless tingling sensation on the skin, as described earlier . The safety of this supplement should not be surprising, since beta-alanine can be created by our own body, and be excreted without problems .
Due to the benefits, this supplement is used by many professional athletes. The use of this supplement is allowed, and will not result in problems for professional athletes.
A dietary supplement can contribute to a healthy and active lifestyle. However, it should not be a substitute for a healthy lifestyle and a varied diet. The recommended dosage should not be exceeded, since side effects may occur otherwise. Temporary side effects of beta-alanine can include a tingling sensation.
As with any supplement, we advise users to consult a physician before use. In particular if you use medication or have health complaints. This product should not be used by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Furthermore, this product should not be used by persons under 18 years of age and must be kept out of the reach of children. Keep this product in a cool and dry place to maintain the quality.
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