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What is the Amino Diet?

The Amino Diet, also known as a low glycemic diet is a well-researched, natural, and safe nutrition program for weight management. The protein-centered diet focuses on consuming foods and supplements that contain all nine essential amino acids.

The amino diet has become an effective way to lose weight rapidly in a healthy way.
Statistical research forecasts the overweight population in the United States to reach 76% by 2025. Although obesity is a worldwide phenomenon, the United States experiences a higher prevalence than in other parts of the world largely due to our diet. The amino diet has become a popular alternative to dangerous bariatric surgeries and fad diets that are sometimes ineffective.

Amino acids are the foundation of proteins that your body needs to carry out a variety of functions. Although you have a wide selection of natural foods rich in amino acids, you can also supplement your diet with liquid aminos that have the full variety and quantities you need.

Read more to learn about the amino diet and how it has been successful in helping people lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Understanding Amino Acids?

The notable Cleveland Clinic provides comprehensive information about amino acids, the molecules that make proteins for all living things on the planet. The human body requires 20 amino acids, nine of which are considered to be essential – meaning those that come from foods that your body cannot produce. These molecules are the building blocks necessary to make proteins.

The body is composed of thousands of various proteins that perform important functions. The combination of a particular set of amino acids makes a specific type of protein that has a unique function. Proteins play a major role both physically and psychologically because they are needed to make the important chemicals and structures necessary to carry out all functions. Essential amino acids are found in a variety of foods, however, the quantity you should consume and variety of the full spectrum has to be considered in order for you to have a balanced nutritional profile.

What is the Role of Amino Acids?

There is a vast variety of proteins in the body all with a specific function. Proteins are required to carry out all cellular processes in human physiology. Thus, the amino acids that make up these proteins lay the foundation for all functions of life. Anything from regulating mood, promoting quality sleep, optimizing physical performance, and even providing the body with the hormonal balance it needs for various functions.

The variety of 20 types of amino acids forms specific proteins that have a broad array of chemical versatility. Amino acids come together in a specific sequence to create a certain type of protein. The unique combination of their sequence determines the structure and function of the protein. You can think of amino acids as letters of the alphabet that are put together in a specific sequence to form words that give unique meanings to things.

The physiological roles of proteins include:

  • Enzymes
  • Antibodies
  • Chemical messengers (hormones)
  • Transport and storage
  • Structure formation

What Are Essential Amino Acids and How Many Are There?

Proteins are composed of essential, non-essential, and conditional amino acids. Essential amino acids cannot be synthesized by the body and need to come from quality natural food sources.

The human diet needs foods that have complete proteins containing all nine essential amino acids in proportion to their biological function. Essential amino acids are found in complete protein sources such as soy, egg whites, dairy, nuts, whole grains, lean meats, and other items.

The following is a list of all nine essential amino acids necessary for the healthy production of various proteins:

  • Histidine
  • Isoleucine
  • Leucine
  • Lysine
  • Methionine
  • Phenylalanine
  • Tryptophan
  • Valine
  • Threonine

How to Define the Amino Diet

To understand it simply, the amino diet is used as a weight-loss method that focuses on eating well-balanced meals with an emphasis on foods and supplements that contain all nine amino acids. It is utilized along with a consistent exercise program to help people rapidly lose weight in a healthy manner. The diet is designed with a detailed structure that guides people on how to shed pounds while still providing the body with balanced nutrients.

Also known as a low glycemic diet, the amino diet is a natural and safe approach to weight loss that is becoming increasingly popular in Europe and the United States. The diet includes whole foods including vegetables, fruits, healthy fats, and lean meats. It is a safe way that has been well-researched as a proven method to naturally lose weight in a short amount of time without any negative side effects.

The natural foundation of this diet is one of the major reasons why it has become increasingly popular in the medical community, the general public, and fitness enthusiasts.

How Exactly Does the Amino Diet Work?

The amino diet focuses on consuming foods with a low glycemic index, which include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, lean proteins, and nuts. It is also possible to supplement with liquid aminos for those that don’t want to consume animal products. There is a variety of foods and supplements available to suit any type of personal preference.

It is best to follow the advice of a nutritionist as you begin a new diet. Seeing a physician who can analyze your nutritional profile with bloodwork is also recommended before you begin the amino diet.

For the best results, diets have to be customized to the individual by a nutritionist who can assess a person’s unique condition. The diet generally begins with a reduced caloric intake for the first 30-90 days and then gradually increases daily calories as the person reaches an ideal weight.

What Foods Have a High Amino Acid Content?

Since the human body is not able to synthesize all nine essential amino acids on its own, you must find them in foods. It is easy to find foods that are rich in amino acids, but the recommended daily intake varies for each type of amino acid. Both plant-based and animal food sources will provide the complete variety your body requires.

These are some of the most quality food choices rich in amino acids:

  • Quinoa
  • Mushrooms
  • Eggs
  • Turkey
  • Cottage Cheese
  • Legumes/Beans
  • Fish

Why Does the Body Require Amino Acids?

The body needs amino acids to make proteins and other key compounds that contain nitrogen including neurotransmitters, peptide hormones, and creatine. Without amino acids, our bodies would not be able to make proteins and would not function properly.

Pros

  • Reduce and prevent fatigue
  • Support the immune system
  • Help the body maintain healthy glucose levels
  • Aid the body in recovery from exercise and injuries
  • Replenish the body to avoid deficiencies
  • Allow specific weight loss goals

Cons

  • Excessive use of amino acids supplements can cause an imbalance
  • Are difficult to consume because of their strong taste
  • The body can become dependent
  • Supplementation can take away from the body’s natural energy resources
  • Amino acids not consumed in balance can affect mood
  • Excessive use can cause kidney disfunction

What Quantity of Amino Acids Should I Consume?

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) lists amino acids’ recommended daily intake represented by a percentage of the total protein intake. The suggested amount of protein a person should eat is calculated by multiplying the person’s weight by .8 grams. For example, if you weigh 145 pounds, you should consume approximately 116 grams of protein each day.

Once you know the amount of protein you need daily, you can find out how much of each essential amino acids you need. The quantity required for each of the nine essential amino acids is calculated by age group in mg/kg per day. The NIH provides a table that details the amino acids required by age group.

Which Amino Acids Are Found in the Liquid Amino Diet?

The liquid amino diet is supported by a variety of supplements. Liquid aminos are made of various essential and nonessential amino acids. They are an excellent source of the nine essential amino acids your body cannot produce on its own.

Different brands have unique formulas in their liquid amino supplements. Natural food sources have a much higher content of amino acids compared to the liquid aminos.

What Are the Health Benefits of Supplementing with Essential Amino Acids?

Although you may eat a balanced diet, supplementing with essential amino acids provides the body with the variety you need. The following are the health benefits of including amino acid supplements in your diet.

Provide Mood-Balancing Effects

Tryptophan is required to produce hormones such as serotonin, which are needed for a sense of well-being and a consistently elevated mood. Amino acids such as isoleucine and valine provide the fuel your body needs, which is required to balance mood.

Histidine assists the body with digestion, which is a key component in having a sense of well-being. It is an amino acid needed to produce histamine, which plays a key role in a healthy digestive system. There is a direct connection between the health of your digestive system and your mood.

Quality sleep is the foundation of a balanced mood. Tryptophan and histidine assist the body in maintaining normal circadian rhythms necessary for healthy sleep patterns. These amino acids help counteract the negative impact that stress, sleep apnea, and insomnia have on the quality of our sleep.

Phenylalanine along with other amino acids helps the body generate the chemical messengers that regulate all body functions including our emotional state. In addition, phenylalanine along with other amino acids helps the body generate the chemical messengers that regulate all body functions including mood regulation.

Help Musculoskeletal Performance and Recovery

Isoleucine and valine help muscles perform optimally. Other amino acids such as leucine help with muscle recovery and repair. Lysine helps the body absorb calcium absorption for healthy bone growth. All of these amino acids are necessary for strong, toned, and healthy muscles and bones. Many athletes use these amino acids as supplements for optimal performance, energy, and stamina.

To have a strong musculoskeletal system, your body needs elastin and collagen. These proteins are composed of amino acids such as lysine and threonine. These compounds help with physical performance and recovery by regenerating the musculoskeletal system. Also, our metabolic function and physical performance are governed by methionine. This important amino acid helps the body keep a healthy metabolic rate, metabolizes fat, and helps with detoxification.

Provide Healing Support to Wounds After Surgery or Injuries

Lysine, Histidine, and threonine keep your immune system strong. They are needed to prevent and treat various diseases and infections after surgery or injuries. In order to heal properly, our bodies also need to have a healthy hormonal balance to carry out many functions. Lysine, epinephrine, and norepinephrine play a key role in the production of hormones. Hormones play a major role in the body’s stress response, metabolism, and many other functions.

What are the Various Essential Amino Acids?

There are nine essential amino acids your body cannot produce by itself and therefore needs to find in foods. Below are the nine essential amino acids.

Lysine

Lysine has an important role in protein synthesis, the absorption of calcium, the production of enzymes, and the synthesis of hormones. It is key to healthy immune function, the generation of elastin and collagen, as well as energy production.

Histidine

Histidine is necessary for the production of histamine, which is a vital neurotransmitter in digestion, sexual function, sleep-wake cycle, and immune response. It is a necessary amino acid to build the protective barrier that encases nerve cells known as the myelin sheath.

Threonine

This amino acid is the foundation of structural proteins that are necessary to build the body. Proteins such as elastin and collagen depend on threonine to build the musculoskeletal system, skin, and connective tissues. Threonine is also necessary for immune function and the metabolism of fats.

Valine

Valine promotes the growth and regeneration of muscle along with energy production. It is an essential component of physical performance and endurance.

Isoleucine

Isoleucine is necessary for muscle metabolism and is concentrated in tissues, especially muscles. It plays a major role in the production of hemoglobin for healthy blood, the regulation of energy, and the optimal function of the immune system.

Leucine

Similar to valine, leucine is an important component of the production of protein. It is necessary to repair muscles, balance glucose in the blood, and regenerate tissue for wound healing. Leucine also helps the body in hormone synthesis.

Phenylalanine

Phenylalanine is transformed by the body into neurotransmitters such as epinephrine, norepinephrine, dopamine, and tyrosine. It plays a key role in the function and structure of enzymes and proteins as well as the production of various amino acids.

Tryptophan

Tryptophan is a precursor necessary for the production of serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that regulates the function of mood, sleep, and appetite.

What Are Conditional Amino Acids?

Unlike essential amino acids, conditional amino acids are only necessary when the body endures stress or illness. Conditional amino acids include proline, serine, ornithine, glycine, arginine, cysteine, tyrosine, and glutamine.

FAQ

Does amino make you lose weight?

Yes! When you consume essential amino acids along with a balanced diet, you will help your body have an optimal metabolic rate. It is a great way to provide natural nutritional support to help you lose weight.

What foods are high in amino?

Natural foods high in essential amino acids include mushrooms, quinoa, dairy, eggs, lean meats, legumes, nuts, and many more.

What do amino acids do for weight loss?

Amino acids give the body the nutritional support you need to produce proteins that carry out a variety of physiological functions including a healthy metabolism. Eating foods rich in amino acids and taking a supplement will provide all the nine essential amino acids your body needs to keep a healthy weight and optimal health. The results are rapid weight loss in a safe and healthy way while supporting all your body systems.

What are amino acids diet?

The diet is comprised of eating whole foods rich in amino acids such as eggs, legumes, dairy, fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. Amino acid supplements such as liquid aminos are also used to ensure the body is getting a sufficient amount and full variety of amino acids.