Within the different essential nutrients that we must contribute to our body from the diet (highlighting vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants), the essential amino acids they are fundamental, since our body is not capable of synthesizing them (that is, producing them by itself).
There are a total of 10 essential amino acids, which we must contribute to our body through the nutrition that we follow daily. And what are the richest foods in them? Fundamentally the richest in proteins, which our body breaks down to obtain them and thus form new proteins.
The phenylalanine is, along with methionine or tryptophan, another of the best known essential amino acids.
What is phenylalanine?
It is an essential amino acid, which our body obtains only and exclusively from the diet, since it is not able to synthesize it.
It is an important amino acid, since our brain uses it to produce noradrenaline (in addition to other chemicals, such as dopamine and epinephrine). In the case of noradrenaline, we have a substance that transmits signals between nerve cells to promote alertness.
Functions of phenylalanine
- Used by our brain to produce noradrenaline.
- It helps improve mood, memory and learning.
- Improves the symptoms of depression and Alzheimer's.
- It helps to reduce the sensation of pain.
- Help in case of headache, muscle and back pain.
- Useful against menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea)
- Essential in the formation of collagen.
Benefits of phenylalanine for health
As we see, phenylalanine stands out for being a fundamental essential amino acid, which our brain uses to produce certain neurohormones and chemical substances: dopamine, epinephrine and noradrenaline, above all.
Therefore, it is an amino acid that helps keep our brain active, promoting alertness, learning and memory. In addition, it is useful when it comes to reducing the symptoms of both depression and Alzheimer's.
It is also useful when it comes to reducing the sensation of pain, in cases such as back pain, muscle pain, headaches, menstrual cramps ... and also for rheumatoid arthritis.
Where do you find phenylalanine?
Here are the foods rich in phenylalanine:
- Food of animal origin: milk and dairy products, eggs, meat and fish.
- Foods of vegetable origin: vegetables, legumes and cereals.
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