If you’ve ever tried shopping for branched chain amino acids, you’ll notice how two different brands give two different recommendations on BCAA dosages. One might suggest two servings per day of 5 grams while another recommends three servings of a 10-gram serving. What’s the real recommendation? How much BCAAs should you take per day? The amount of BCAAs you take each day will depend on your activity level, fitness goals, and whether you’re a man or a woman. Let’s breakdown the best BCAA dosage and when to take BCAAs.
BCAAs and Your Activity LevelDepending on how active you are will determine how many servings of BCAAs you should be taking each day. Let’s assume you’re using a standard BCAA supplement with a serving of five grams. This would contain 2.5 grams of leucine, 1.25 grams of isoleucine, and 1.25 grams of valine.
- If you are a fairly active person – someone who exercises 2 to 3 days per week – then one serving before your workout and a second serving at some other point in the day will be enough.
- If you are a very active person, you’ll want to add a third serving to your day, preferably before bed as a low-calorie way to support protein synthesis.
- If you are extremely active – someone who exercises and has a physically-demanding job – then I’d suggest using four servings per day. Be sure to spread them out from morning until night, using one serving before and another serving during the most physically-active part of the day.
BCAAs and Your Fitness GoalsFitness goals will also help to determine your daily BCAA dosage. What do you want to use BCAAs for? Someone who is focused on muscle mass will require more BCAAs than someone who wants to simply maintain an achieved fitness goal. Continuing with the same 5-gram serving for the example above:
- If you want to build muscle mass, you’ll want to use two to four servings per day of BCAAs. This will depend on your workout program and how active you are. The more active you are, the tougher your workout, the more you’ll want to use.
- If you want to lose weight, using one or two servings of BCAAs will suffice. However, if you are performing fasted training, you may want to consider a third serving to protect your lean muscle tissue from breakdown.
- If you’re happy with your current weight and muscle mass, then one serving per day, usually before a workout, will be enough.