Dietary Supplements and Sports Performance: Amino Acids

Author: Nicole Adler   Date Posted: 23 February 2017 

There are many Australian online supplements that could enhance your sports performance, but the type of Australian online supplements that seem most effective for this job seem to be amino acids supplements. To learn more about the relationship between the amino acids supplements in our Australian online supplements range and enhanced sports performance, please read the information provided by Nutrients Direct below.

Tryptophan and Branched Chain Amino Acids

Before we look at the physical effects of an amino acid supplement, we need to look at the mental effects. An amino acid supplement can effectively reduce feelings of mental fatigue, but can also improve your concentration; this effect can be explained by the link between tryptophan and branched chain amino acids.

Tryptophan is a substance that is a precursor for serotonin. It travels to the brain, where it is converted into this substance. Unfortunately, serotonin is often associated with feelings of fatigue and a loss of concentration.

When an athlete uses an amino acid supplement, the branched chain amino acids inside will combat tryptophan for access to the brain; this means that less tryptophan enters the brain and less of this compound is converted into serotonin. In short, amino acid supplements could make athletes feel less tired and fatigued during their training.

Glutamine and Your Overall Health

There are other amino acids that could prove useful for your training. One of these other amino acids is glutamine, an amino acid that is commonly used by athletes to enhance their sports performance. To find out how glutamine can do this, be sure to read on.

When you do a strenuous workout, your immune system is going to take quite a hit. This is especially the case for exercises such as weight lifting and high intensity interval training. Many athletes who undergo intense training frequently can therefore experience problems with their muscles, but also with their central nervous system.

Of course, when your immune system takes a beating, you will be more susceptible to illness and disease, which could certainly have a negative impact on your overall training. Still, to protect your immune system, you can use a supplement containing glutamine.

A study published in the “Nutrition Journal” searched for a link between glutamine and the immune system. During the study, endurance runners and rowers were monitored during seven days of exercise. There was also a control group, who were not exercising at all.

The study showed that a decrease of glutamine levels in the exercising athletes were also accompanied by lower levels of white blood cells and lymphocytes. However, athletes who took a glutamine supplement showed improved levels of T-helper and T-suppressor cells. They also seemed less susceptible to health problems such as infections.

The conclusion of the study was clear, by supplementing with glutamine after rigorous exercise, the athlete can increase the functioning of the immune system and deal with the stress of intense workouts better.

In addition to protecting your immune system, glutamine has proven beneficial for the resynthesising of carbohydrates after your training. When you undergo rigorous training, your glycogen levels will deplete rather quickly. Therefore, it is important for athletes to get those carbohydrates in as soon as possible. Studies have shown that glutamine could help with this.

A study executed in the United Kingdom by the Department of Anatomy and Physiology, supplemented test subjects with 8 grams of glutamine and 330 millilitres of glucose polymer. The supplement was administered after a period of strenuous exercise. The results of the UK study showed that the addition of glutamine to a post-workout drink could increase the recovery process. Even though this will not necessarily improve any soreness you may experience after training, it does enable you to build and repair more muscle tissue over time.

L-Arginine and Endurance

Another amino acid that could prove beneficial for athletes is L-arginine. L-arginine is a precursor for another compound called nitric oxide, which is a vasodilator. A vasodilator causes the veins and arteries to widen, making sure that blood can reach the various parts of your body easier.

At first glance, the vasodilating nature of L-arginine could be useful for health problems relating to the narrowing of the blood vessels. However, L-arginine has benefits for your gym performance as well.

To enjoy good performance during your training, it is important for the blood to reach the right places in the human body. Therefore, using L-arginine as a supplement could guarantee a good blood supply during intensive workouts.

In addition to supplements, L-arginine can be obtained from food sources such as eggs, beef and wild salmon. However, these foods take a while to digest, so to get quick access to L-arginine during your training, you could depend on arginine supplements instead.

Protein Powder and Amino Acids

We already explained that pure amino acids supplements from our Australian online supplements range could contribute to enhanced sports performance. However, patients must know that amino acids are not only obtained from amino acids supplements, but also from protein powders.

If you are familiar with the structure of protein, you already know that protein consists of amino acids. Therefore, amino acids could be obtained from a good protein powder as well. However, opposed to amino acids supplements, protein powders must be digested before the amino acids can be absorbed in the bloodstream. Therefore, athletes who want quicker access to amino acids should use amino acids supplements, but if they wish a slower release of amino acids, they could use a protein powder from our Australian online supplements range.


There are many amino acids that could prove useful for your gym performance. Of course, before you decide on a specific amino acid, it is best to evaluate your training to determine where you could use help. Once you find the problem, you can choose the best supplement containing amino acids.

To help you find useful supplements to enhance sports performance, Nutrients Direct has installed a filter on the main menu. There, you can select your fitness goal and immediately get an overview of supplements that could enhance your sports performance. So, be sure to use this tool if you need a gym performance enhancing supplement.


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