Beta-Alanine Improves Jump Performance in Skiers

Beta-alanine improved jumping power and performance in alpine skiers on a 90-second box jump test— according to researchers from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden. Alanine is an amino acid that helps supply energy during exercise. It is converted to blood sugar in the liver by a process called the glucose-alanine cycle. While it is not used to synthesize muscle tissue or enzymes, it influences exercise capacity— particularly endurance performance. Other studies found that alanine improved strength-endurance performance. Doses of 10 grams per day caused tingling and numbness in the skin. Beta-alanine might be a good supplement, but there might be side effects in high doses. (International Journal Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, 24:665-673, 2014)

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