All about amino acids

Amino acid

Amino acids are molecules that contain a carboxylic group, an amine group and a side chain that is particular to a specific amino acid. They are generally referred in biochemistry, as alpha amino acids. The main constituents of an amino acid are hydrogen, nitrogen, carbon and oxygen. Amino acids play an important role in improving the metabolism and are the building blocks of proteins. The linear chains of various amino acids are joined in different combinations that give rise to distinct proteins.

There are 22 amino acids that are characterized as standard and non standard. Out of these, eight are essential amino acids. Essential amino acids cannot be prepared in human body from various components, you can only get them from the food you intake. Amino acid intake depends upon the health and age of an individual, that’s the reason it’s very difficult to comment on the requirements of various amino acids.

Various types of amino acids and their relevance in medical arena are as given below:

1. Alanine

This amino acid is used in enhancing sports endurance and performance, keeping lower levels of blood sugar, muscle fatigue, improving metabolism. It is also helpful in treating benign prostatic hyperplasia.

2. Arginine

This amino acid is mainly related with the functions of reproductive system. It is effective in treating erectile dysfunction, enhancing sexual performance and maintaining healthy sexual health. Long term memory loss can be treated with arginine intake. It is also important in regulating activities of cardio vascular system like, circulation, blood pressure. Arginine is helpful in nitric acid metabolism and enhancing athletic performance.

3. Glutamine

Glutamine is essential in boosting the immune system of human body. It helps in keeping infections at bay and improves digestion. It is also used by various athletes to improve their performance. This amino acid is effective in treating pre and post operative complications and provides a great support in overcoming them. Glutamine is used in HIV infected patients.

4. Lysine

It is used in treatment of various post surgical aftermaths. It is useful in balancing nitrogen levels in body. It is used in maintaining proper growth and development of the body. Various sports injuries recover easily with the use of this amino acid. It is also used in geriatric patients that help in preventing osteoporosis and bone loss.

5. Ornithine

It has detoxifying properties. It helps in metabolism of fats in liver. Boosting immune system and improving athletic performance. It helps in growth and strengthening of muscles.

7. Tyrosine

It is used in treating various psychological disorders like, stress, depression and anxiety. This amino acid promotes a sense of well being as mood swings reduce when it is taken as supplement. Muscular coordination and motor functions get enhanced. Tyrosine helps in regulating hormones that in turn decreases irritability and fatigue and increases arousal and alertness.

8. Glycine

This amino acid is used in energy metabolism, mental health, digestion, benign prostatic hyperplasia and nervous system.

9. Methionine

This amino acid helps in taking proper care of hair, nails, kidneys, liver. It is beneficial in growth and metabolism of body. It also helps in reducing cholesterol levels and treating pancreatitis.

10. Taurine

Taurine has antioxidant and anti-anxiety properties. It also influences cardiovascular and central nervous system. It helps in the regulation of blood pressure and sugar levels. It is also useful in removing anemia. It also maintains eye health.

11. Tryptophan

It is used as an anti depressant by many patients with sleep disorders. It is used in treating conditions like seasonal affective disorder and premenstrual dysphoric disorder. It helps in increasing serotonin levels in brain. It is also effective in treating epilepsy and depression.

12. Cysteine

It is used in treating bronchitis, lung disorders, acetaminophen poisoning. It has antioxidant properties.

13. Aspartic acid

It increases energy and stamina of the body. It is beneficial for reproductive and central nervous system and helps in maintaining proper brain health. It helps in the reduction of ammonia levels.

14. Isolycine

This amino acid participates in the biochemical process that helps in release of energy. It is usually found in capsules and powders and is widely used by atheletes, weightlifters. It helps in reducing fat and building lean muscle mass.

15. Leucine

It is important in growth as it contributes towards protein synthesis. It helps in healing injuries and wounds. It also helps in balancing of blood sugar levels.

16. Valine

This amino acid assists in metabolism of protein and is helpful in building muscles. It also helps in treating tissue damage from gallbladder and liver diseases.

17. Phenylalanine

It is found in the milk of mammals. It is used in making of various dietary and food products. It is found in numerous analgesics and antidepressants.

18. Threonine

It is used in the synthesis of serine and glycine. It is found in good amounts in heart and helps keep muscles and connective tissue stronger. It helps in building strong tooth enamel and bones. It also decreases recovery time from injuries.

19. Glutamic acid

It is essential in regulating metabolism related to sugar and fats. It helps in correcting personality and various childhood behavioral disorders. Glutamic acid helps in treating mental retardation, epilepsy, ulcers, muscular dystrophy.

20. Proline

It helps in breaking proteins and helps in constructing new healthy cells. It is necessary in maintain and developing connective tissue and healthy skin.

21. Serine

It is essential for proper functioning of central nervous system and brain. Serine is beneficial for overall health of the body, both mental and physical. It helps in sealing moisture as it finds its use in skin care and cosmetic preparations.

22. Histidine

This amino acid ensures the transmission of messages from central nervous system to various body parts. It is useful in treating mental and sexual disorders. Low levels of amino acid contribute to deafness and rheumatoid arthritis.

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