BCAA Side Effects
In the summer of 2014 there was a massive campaign to promote awareness of ALS (Amyotrophic lateral Sclerosis) going through social media. In the awareness campaign, an individual had to dump water on themselves publicly or donate a $100 to the ALS Foundation for research. Well, it became an Internet hit and millions of people publically dumped ice water on themselves and then proposed the challenge to at least 3 other friends or acquaintances. Heck, you may have very well been apart of that awareness campaign yourself!
However, what you may not have known is that BCAA (Branch Chain Amino Acids) was a treatment method that doctors used to use to help treat ALS. In the past, there was a belief in the medical community that BCAA could help treat the nerve damage caused by ALS. However, after further research, it was found that people who had ALS and taking BCAA for supplements were experiencing higher death rates and lung failure then those who weren’t. The reason for this is because a negative side effect of BCAA is that it can exasperate nerve damage in your body if you have a disease like ALS.
Using BCAA In Early Childhood
BCAA is also known to possibly cause low blood sugar in small infants. This is because BCAA is a hormone regulator for insulin and glucose. What this does is effectively work very well for adults in keeping proper amounts of sugar in the body. However, BCAA supplementation at too early of an age can cause the negative effect of having a child with blood sugar levels that are too low, which is why it is important that you do not have children under the age of 12 take any form of BCAA supplement.
Taking High Dosages of BCAA
The primary function of BCAA is to help with muscle growth and insulin regulation in the body. However, it also acts as a hormone-controlling agent, which typically has beneficial effects on the body. If taken in high dosages over a period of time it can lead to a greater chance that you have a seizure or brain failure, that could lead to retardation. Since BCAA are utilized as chemical reactors in the body that send signals to different places like the muscles (creating good things like protein synthesis) and body organs, if your body has too much it can put your body in overdrive. This may result in the loss of hand-eye coordination, and cause you to feel very tired all the time. Having excessive amounts of BCAA in your muscles that accelerate protein synthesis to an unhealthy level usually brings on this fatigue.
BCAA and Pregnacy
Mothers who are pregnant or nursing should also avoid taking any kind of BCAA supplements because of the potential side effects. There have not been enough studies shown whether or not BCAA causes damage to the unborn child, or a child that is feeding. However, children who have been exposed to BCAA supplements under the age of 12 have been sometimes found to have low blood sugar levels, and also be underdeveloped mentally as a result. Due to the possibility of potential damage to a young or unborn child, it is recommended by the health community that pregnant or nursing mothers not take a BCAA supplement to avoid any potential BCAA negative side effects.
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