By: Miguel Carrera, CPT
Today I will be reviewing “Beta BCAA” by Cellucor in the “Tropical Splash” flavor. Right off the bat, I must say that I have never been a fan of intra workout products. It’s quite possible that previous products (BCAA's) I have taken in the past have just not delivered. I remember certain products actually causing nausea and bloating, which effected my performance in the worst way possible.
So, I thought I was going into this being biased, but to be completely honest, this product has made me a believer. I noticed a difference immediately, from the very first dose. Now I'm not saying this is a miracle product, but I most definitely felt a difference in my performance and endurance. Where I would usually fail, I was able to muster just a few more reps. Surprisingly I was still mentally exhausted, but physically I was able to push harder and longer.
The flavor is decent, it sort of reminds me of a fruit juice from concentrate. Just like many other products of its kind, it is both naturally and artificially flavored. Along with the artificial flavoring, comes the artificial coloring and dyes(FD&C Red#40) which I can't say I'm a big fan of. Some other things you'll find inside the ingredient list is an instantized branch chain amino acid blend.
This is a 2:1:1 blend which is considered to be the best ratio. You have probably seen ratios that go up to 8:1:1 or as high as 10:1:1. Initially, I assumed the highest ratio is best, but after some research, I realized why these high ratios are ineffective.
The 3 main branch chain aminos are Leucine, Isoleucine, and Valine. Out of the 3, Leucine would be considered the MVP for muscle stimulation and growth. The thing is, just like a well rounded diet, there needs to be a certain percentage or ratio that plays into each other. For example: knowing protein is responsible for building muscle, I should consume as much as possible with a minimal amount of carbohydrate and fats. This theory would be incorrect. Even though protein hails king, you need adequate ratios of carbs and fats to protein. Same goes for your BCAAs. If you just take Leucine, or too high of a ratio, synchronicity within the body is not possible.
Isoleucine is dubbed responsible for providing the BCAAs with fat burning properties. Valine on the other hand, is responsible for endurance and stamina. All 3 are important on their own, but they work better and more efficiently when they work together.
Another very important ingredient in this BCAA like many other is Beta-Alanine. Beta-Alanine is a modified version of the amino acid Alanine. This ingredient delivers an extended period of energy and endurance to your muscles by helping protect and aid lactic acid build up induced by activity and exercise. Basically, it helps tone down the burn you feel, resulting in a few more reps or quite possibly another set. Usually, you will feel a “flush” that occurs throughout your body. This is a harmless side effect of Beta-Alanine, usually getting the brunt of the flush sensation in the face and ears.
My experience with this product has been great, and although there are some factors I don't like or believe in, I would rate this product a 4/5 stars.