Isoleucine: essential amino acid

isoleucine In addition to vitamins and minerals, following a healthy and balanced diet also gives us amino acids . As indicated by many nutritionists, there are eight essential amino acids for our body, but in particular we can find 20 different amino acids.

Our body is only able to synthesize 16 amino acids, which our organism synthesizes by recycling dead cells from the intestinal tract, to then catabolize proteins.

What are the amino acids?

They are the elementary constituent units of the molecules that are called proteins . We could consider them as authentic "building blocks", so that the protein substances that are "built" in our body do so thanks to these 20 amino acids: nails, hair, muscles, organs, tendons and glands.

Depending on their characteristics, and provenance, they can be referred to as essential amino acids and non-essential amino acids.

What is isoleucine?

It is one of the eight essential amino acids for our body, since it is part of both the genetic code and our muscle tissue.

Functions of isoleucine

  • It is part of the genetic code.
  • It is an essential part of our muscle tissue.
  • Necessary for the formation of hemoglobin.
  • It helps the healing and repair of muscle tissue, bones and skin.
  • It helps regulate blood sugar.

Benefits of isoleucine for health

We are faced with a fundamental essential amino acid within a balanced and varied diet, as it is an essential nutrient that helps regulate blood sugar levels.

It is necessary for the formation of hemoglobin, at the same time that it intervenes in the blood coagulation, and after sports practice it is useful to repair muscles, hence it is an interesting amino acid both for athletes and for people who practice physical exercise .

Where to find isoleucine?

Food is the only one that can provide isoleucine to our body. Therefore, the amounts that our body needs of this essential amino acid must be contributed through the diet.

We find it especially in proteins of animal origin: meat, fish, eggs and dairy products. And also in vegetable proteins: cereals and legumes.

Symptoms of isoleucine deficiency

A diet low in protein also causes a lack of isoleucine, and symptoms such as irritability, fatigue, headaches and depression may appear.

Image | Peter Hellberg

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