What is beta alanine?
Beta-alanine is a building block of carnosine which helps to buffer acid in muscles and increases a body’s athletic performance and muscle stamina. It is used by bodybuilders, athletes and those who go to the gym. When you work out intensely, lactic acid begins to build in your muscles. This causes an effect called as “burning effect” which reduces the performance of the body and creates tiredness and fatigue. With the help of beta-alanine dosage, positively charged hydrogen ions are buffered away so that the acidity of the muscles decreases. It results in normalizing pH level and boosts performance.
Before using beta-alanine, you must be well-aware of its working, dosage and side effects etc.
Working of beta-alanine and carnosine:
Aerobic respiration is a process of generating energy in the body through oxygen. It is a multi-step process which is utilized by a human body to derive energy from glucose.
It helps in creating fuel that is needed for many bodily purposes like walking, sleeping, talking, eating, digesting and thinking etc. This process is constant throughout life.
When the body participates in some kind of activity, its demand for oxygen exceeds the amount of supply. In that case, the energy must be synthesized anaerobically. It means creating energy without the use of oxygen.
The intake of beta-alanine is an anaerobically process that doesn’t require oxygen. It elevates the carnosine levels in the body that transport hydrogen positive of the human system and increases the body’s working and performance.
Cyclists, runners, and bodybuilders do a lot of athletic performance, and the chance of getting exhausted is quite great. They are particularly concerned about oxygen uptake, VO2 max and time to time exhaustion. These factors are actually caused by body’s capacity of creating positive hydrogen ions.
For improving the VO2 max, time to time exhaustion and oxygen uptake, 4 to 6 grams daily intake of oral beta alanine is recommended. It’s better to divide it into equal amounts to be taken every three hours. Dividing it into equal amounts is a common practice among many users.
Different researchers have shown that after 35 minutes of beta-alanine intake, it reaches its peak serum. Then about 3 hours after the intake, it returns back to the baseline level. During the 3 hours, it remains elevated.
Beta-alanine dosage research:
Some athletes recommend pyramid approach to take beta alanine dosage. For example, if your desired dosage is 8 grams, then you can start with 3 grams for the first week, 6 grams for the next and 8 grams daily for remaining supplementation period.
Different trials have been done on different people. In 2011, a trial was done on male cyclists. They were ingested with 6.4 grams of beta-alanine daily. This dosage was divided into 4 equal intakes of 1600 mg each (two capsules of 800mg).
In another study, 2 grams daily were ingested in the first week. They increased the dosage to 3 grams in the second week, and for the remaining 4 weeks trial, a daily dosage of 4 grams was ingested.
Side effects of beta-alanine:
The most common side effect of beta-alanine dosage is temporary paresthesia. It is burning, tingling, numbness, crawling, or itching of the skin. It is caused by taking too much amount of beta-alanine dosage at once. This effect is harmless and goes away in an hour or so. It can be avoided by dividing the dosage into equal amounts that can be consumed throughout the day.
Certain beta-alanine can cause respiratory tract, digestion tract or irritation of the skin but it’s not very common. Oral beta-alanine is considered safe for short-term usage.