Amino acids are the building blocks of the entire human body and physiology. Our bodies are made up of protein, and all protein molecules are connected in various patterns by 23 different non-essential and essential amino acids.
Here is a glimpse of the many different roles amino acids play in the body:
- Synthesis of Muscles → Actin & Myosin
- Skin, hair, nails, and connective tissues → Threonine and collagen
- Calming in brain → Tryptophan, GABA
- Fat metabolism → L-Carnitine
- Fuel source for immune system → L-Glutamine
- Brain balancing → Serotonin, glycine, acetylcholine
- Wound healing →
- Mood disorders → Various neurotransmitters require amino acids such as tryptophan, tyrosine, and phenylalanine for production
The roles listed above only scratch the surface. Because of the impact optimal amino acid levels have on the entire body and its physiology it is important to have a constant supply.
There is an important distinction between non-essential conditional and essential amino acids. Non-essential amino acids are made by the body and assumed to be always available.. However, there is a third category of amino acids that IV Nutrition Therapy can be particularly of benefit, and that is conditional amino acids. This group is usually non-essential, but are rapidly depleted during times of illness and stress which requires supplementation. Non-essential amino acids such as arginine, cysteine, glutamine, tyrosine, glycine, proline, serine, and more can be easily replaced with IV Nutrition Therapy, but can have detrimental effects when the body is unable to keep up with the demand placed by illness and stress.
Essential amino acids cannot be made by the body so you must get them from your diet, oral supplementation, or through IV Nutrition Therapy. Inflammation, food choices, leaky gut and more can prevent getting adequate levels of essential amino acids, so It is critical to get all nine of the essential amino acids or the formation of various proteins may suffer. It is evident how critical obtaining all essential amino acids truly is considering protein is responsible for repair, growth, and maintenance of cells.
Real food in its whole form is an excellent way to begin fueling amino acid levels. Amino acids with the full profile of essential amino acids includes:
- Grass-fed beef
- Pasture raised chicken
- Organ meats (liver)
- Pasture raised eggs
Other foods that have an incomplete amino acid profile include:
It is important to understand that with various key nutrients including amino acids, food alone may not be enough. Here are a few obstacles that can inhibit proper levels through food sources alone:
DIETS WITH LIMITED AMINO ACIDS
Individuals who are vegetarian or vegan need to be especially proactive about checking their amino acid levels as they are the most vulnerable to deficiencies. While you can pair plant-based foods such as rice and beans to get a little bit of all essential amino acids, grass-fed and free range meat, such as beef and chicken, are the only food sources that contain the all essential amino acids.
The Standard American Diet (SAD) is another culprit, as lacks quite a bit of key nutrients, specifically amino acids, needed for good health. Additionally, the SAD can cause intestinal and systemic inflammation leading you further down a path of poor health.
Intestinal inflammation is a serious and often-overlooked player when it comes to compromised health. Our digestive tract is responsible for the breakdown of food, and to transport key nutrients throughout body. However, when there is intestinal inflammation the layer of cells in the small intestine that plays an essential role in the digestion of protein may become damaged.
Once damaged, functions such as pancreatic enzyme activation and absorption and delivery of amino acids from the digestive tract, through the lymph vessels, to the liver for circulation cannot be completed correctly.
If pepsin secretion and/or the release of pancreatic enzymes are not working properly when protein is ingested, you can expect imperfect digestion, also called maldigestion. If the proteins are not broken down properly due to the lack of necessary chemicals, your body will not receive adequate amounts of amino acids.
Malabsorption, a condition that prevents us from absorbing nutrients through the small intestine, may be the result of maldigestion and/or intestinal inflammation. Malabsorption can also play a key role in amino acid deficiencies since it prevents proper break down and assimilation of the proteins we eat.
VITAMIN B DEFICIENCY
B vitamins are required for all amino acid formations. If an individual is deficient in B vitamins there is a good chance they are also deficient in amino acids.
Oral supplementation can help combat what amino acids might be lacking from your diet. It’s important to note that you may face similar roadblocks with oral supplementation if you have intestinal inflammation and in result, malabsorption.
The best solution, especially if you are deficient in various amino acids, is receiving them intravenously. This allows the nutrients to bypass the digestive system, lymphatic system, and liver and be directly delivered to the blood to be circulated appropriately.
There are labs available that provide a full picture of your specific amino acid levels. This allows your provider to increase dosage for specific amino acids that you may be deficient in, thus providing an even greater impact on your health!
Amino acids we use individually or in combination include:
- L- Arginine HCL
- L- Glutamine
- L- Glycine
- L- Lysine
- L- Taurine 50mg
- L- Taurine 100mg
- L- Tryptophan
Changes you might experience include, but are not limited to:
- Improved sleep
- Improved moods
- Increased exercise performance
- Prevent muscle loss
- May promote weight loss