What does Beta-Alanine do?
Beta alanine or β-alanine is a variant of the amino acid alanine. Beta alanine acts within the body as a precursor to carnosine. As such, consumption of larger doses of beta alanine will raise carnosine levels within the body as beta alanine is converted to carnosoine through the addition of another amino acid known as L-histidine.
Carnosine cannot enter the muscles directly but beta-alanine and histidine can with beta-alanine being the one more likely to be the limiter in obtaining high levels of Carnosine.
Carnosine acts as a buffer to metabolic acidosis. What this means is that during periods where the PH levels of the body drop, such as from dietary changes or from periods of high intensity exercise, carnosine can buffer against this to keep pH within the desired ranges.
Keeping your bodies PH regulated during exercise is one way of ensuring the body operates to its maximal during exercise and raising carnosine levels through beta-alanine supplementation has been shown to delay fatigue and improve performance in high intensity exercise.
How much beta-alanine should you take?
Those studies which showed improvements in performance typically required in the range of 3-6g of beta-alanine a day, typically split up into 1-1.5g doses spread throughout the day.
When should you take beta-alanine?
Beta-alanine can provide a direct boost to carnosine levels almost immediately, so taking a dose thirty minutes preworkout works well. However, the greatest effect from beta-alanine arises from optimising carnosine levels intramuscularly and as such several doses spread throughout the day will lead to the best results.
Considerations when taking beta-alanine
Large amounts may cause paresthesia which is a tingling sensation but this is a harmless side effect. By spreading out your doses of beta-alanine throughout the day you can minimise these effects.
Preworkout+ contains beta-alanine as a fundamental ingredient which has contributed to it being one of the most popular pre workout products in the UK today with everyone from gym users to professional athletes having it as part of their supplement plan.