Gone are the days when women were relegated to the bedroom and the kitchen.
In the 21st century, women all over the world (most of it anyway), are taking up roles and activities that were once thought to be set aside for men.
Today, it is pretty common to see women walk in and out of gyms all sweaty, thirsty and burned out.
This is a commendable step for these women, since working out and getting that desired body figure, even for men, is not an easy process.
That said, most women hitting the gym or taking up different fitness activities do not make the necessary dietary changes to help keep the lean muscle and shed off the fats.
This is where the BCAAs come into play.
These formulas are designed to provide women with amino acids that will efficiently deliver energy and proteins that the muscles need to grow and for the body to shed off the excess fats.
But while these supplements are a one of a kind technology in the women fitness industry, you will need to make a choice for the best one.
You see, with the numerous makes and brands (which we all know they cannot be equal in performance and quality), making a decision becomes slightly harder.
It is for this reason that we have compiled a list of top 7 best BCAA for women.
But before that…
What are BCAAs and What Do They Do?
BCAA is an acronym that stands for Branched-chain Amino-Acids. Simply put, it is a supplement containing 3 essential amino acids. The keyword to note in the explanation is ‘essential.'
The term essential in this context refers to a category of amino acids that the body does not have the ability to produce naturally. This is to mean that for the body to make use of them, it has to obtain them from a different source in the form of fluids, food, and dietary supplements.
There is another category of amino acids known as non-essential amino acids. These refer to amino acids that the body can produce for itself. They do not need to be supplemented or obtained through any diet.
BCAA supplements contain the below amino acids; Leucine, isoleucine, and valine.
Of the three amino acids, this is considered to be the favorite amino acid. It is responsible for stimulating the synthesis of protein.
From your basic biology, you know that protein synthesis is the foundation of the growth and development of new muscles.
Studies conducted show that the amount of amino acids in the blood is directly proportional to the level of protein synthesis in the muscles.
Another reason why Leucine is considered to be the favorite child of the 3 amino acids is the fact that it also works to activate mTOR, an enzyme that is responsible for the growth of cells and that helps to stimulate the loss of fat and simultaneously maintaining the muscle mass.
Many individuals consider this to be the second most important amino acid in the BCAA supplements.
This amino acid helps in increasing the metabolism of glucose and its absorption in the muscles.
Isoleucine is also tasked with the responsibility of increasing the energy levels as well as the blood sugar levels.
In addition to these, this amino acid is vital in supplying energy to the muscle tissues. This is especially important during intensive workouts when the muscles need the energy to get by.
This means that when the isoleucine levels in the blood are low, the muscles will not receive sufficient energy and the body will as such turn to the storage reserves for energy.
This results in a reduced muscle mass and leucine. For women who are looking to increase in mass, this is a loss they cannot afford if they want to keep making progress.
This is the third member of BCAAs but still an amino acid that features valuable use.
Valine has been named crucial in the fermenting process of alcoholic drinks and also as a building block of several important enzymes in the body.
You could say that valine plays important roles behind the scenes.
But as we all know, everything that goes on behind the scenes is useful and crucial to the making of everything else we see on screen.
In the case of valine, the role it plays in the building of muscle mass and physical strength you cannot ignore or take for granted.
Benefits of the BCAA Supplements
Reading this, you probably are wondering why in the world you would need this. You have experienced results without it so far so why should you start using BCAA supplements now?
Well, it is a great thing that you have seen results thus far. But you should understand that like growth that everything else experiences, yours is bound to flat line one point or the other.
This does not mean that your body has reached its maximum growth capacity but rather, given the resources it has, it cannot grow anymore. BCAAs come into play to take your fitness training to the next level.
These supplements will work to fill in the gaps in your training and record an increase in your growth curve.
However, while this is the main reason why you should get started, there are other benefits of these supplements that make them all the more irresistibly popular.
Supports the immune system
After muscle growth, this is probably the second benefit you will notice. With every workout, you push your body to its limit and exert great pressure and stress on your body.
If your body is not in the least prepared to take this kind of heat and stress, you will soon be friends with common training downfalls such as reduced muscle recovery, muscle fatigue and overall feelings of exhaustion. All these will make it all the easier for you to give up on your training.
And because the 3 amino acids contained in the supplement are not produced by the body, lack of ingesting them renders your body to be weak and causes it to slowly fall apart creating loopholes in your training.
Protects from deficiency of essential amino acids
It goes without saying that supplementing your diet with BCAA will see to it that you do not experience any amino acid deficiencies. It is pretty obvious.
This is most especially for the body building women and athletes who keep track of their protein levels., It is imperative that they ensure all amino acids are in their required levels.
New muscle is only built through protein synthesis which requires the fundamental building blocks which are amino acids. Adding to this, muscle repair also needs amino acids to be repaired.
That said, the faster these two processes are (muscle repair and new muscle building) are, the faster you will see your results.
Maintaining muscle mass
Every time your body goes through physical stress, it is recommended that you take a break from training weightlifting and any physical exertion. This will help your body get back on track with time.
The problem is that while your body is recovering from the stress exerted on it, it is losing muscles.
As such, the most important times for a woman to take their BCAA supplements soonest they can is when she has had surgery or when she plans to take an extended break from any physical activity. This supplementation helps in speeding up the rate of muscle recovery.
It is during these times that many are more concerned with their protein intake, so much so that they forget all about the above-mentioned BCAA supplements.
When is the Best Time to Drink BCAAs?
Three instances have been proven the best to take your drink. These times are:
- Right after waking up
- Before a workout
- After a workout
When You Wake Up
Right after waking up, the body embarks on a mission, breaking down muscle. This is because of the ‘fast’ you had during the night while you were asleep.
If you are looking to build your muscle, then this is the best time to take in between 5 and 10 grams. Doing this has three benefits.
First, you will experience a mental boost, your hunger will reduce significantly, and you will promote muscle growth.
In our sleep, our body goes into overdrive getting things in order preparing for when you wake up. All you had taken before you slept is used up. By the time you wake up, there is no source of fuel for the body to carry out the daily activities.
As such it looks to your muscles as the next best option. BCAA intake helps to prevent this from happening.
If you do not intend on taking breakfast, then you should at the very least take a protein shake with between 5 - 10 grams.
Before and After a Workout
Before and after your workout, nutrition is paramount. During these two times, it is important to provide your body with the fuel it needs to meet the demands for the fitness routine you embark on. Without a proper nutrition, you will never experience any significant increased to your body mass.
Now, between before and after, you might wonder which is the best time? The truth is, the two times are equally as important.
Taking between 5and 10 grams of BCSS before a workout will see to it that your body has got all it needs to get through a workout without breaking down your muscles for fuel. Taking the same amount after a workout will help your muscles to repair faster from all the damage sustained during a workout.
Why is the Timing so Important?
Why would there be the best time to take the BCAA? Isn’t the fact that the BCAA is in your system enough? Unfortunately, this is not the case.
Our bodies have been created to rely on timing. Getting the right nutrients is not enough. It has to get them at the right time as well.
If you have to choose a single time, then you would have to consider your goals. In the event you are looking to delay a burn out after a workout, then the best time to take your drink is before a workout.
If you intend to get rid of the soreness that comes after a workout, then you should take in the BCAA right after the workout. Taking the supplement at both times will help you achieve both targets. All in all, you need to appreciate that timing is everything.
What are the Best BCAAs For Women? Top 7 Review
1. IdealLean BCAA - Sugarfree
It provides a whopping 5,000mg per serving which is ideal for body building and athlete women. The high-quality BCAAs packed in this product are in the ration of 2:1:1. This is the best ration on the market.
Others rated 10:1:1 are not the best though it might be tempting to think that they are. Studies conducted show that the 2:1:1 is the best ratio. This product also comes with a fat loss blend that allows for women to shed off the excess fat while they build their lean muscle to achieve a toned and super sexy body.
Ingredients in this product that stand out are the Green Tea Extract and CLA, L-Citrulline, and L-Glutamine and Coconut Powder.
The Green Tea Extract has proven to be perfect in enhancing the breakdown of fats and improving physical performance while CLA has been shown to support weight loss. Coconut powder helps in hydration while L-Citrulline and L-Glutamine help to increase lean muscle mass.
2. Strong Girl Pre-Workout BCAA - Best Tasting
The name of itsays it all. The product has been made and designed for women.
The supplement provides intensive and explosive power during workouts thus enhancing performance and the strength.
It is important to note that this supplement is marketed as a pre-workout BCAA.
The product is formulated with quercetin, L-Carnitine, CarnoSyn beta-alanine, caffeine and Green Tea Extract. All these work together to increase your strength.
3. 1UP Nutrition - Her BCAA - Ideal for Muscle Growth
This is one product that has a great look and will undoubtedly work to further your fitness goals. This product helps in rehydrating your body as well as helping you replenish and recover.
It can do this with the help of Sustamine which is a combination of several amino acids including L-Alanine and L-glutamine.
In addition to the above, the supplement is designed to be digested and absorbed fast and to promote the strength and performance of the joints by promoting protein synthesis and muscle growth.
This supplement also features a hydration complex which helps in replacing all lost electrolytes as well as repairing all damaged muscle tissues.
- Contains Vitamin C
- Sports collagen
- Has 30 servings in a single pack
- Has a glycogen hydration blend
- Features 5.2g in the ration 3:1:1
- Features artificial flavors and sweeteners
- Some users dislike the aftertaste
Like most BCAAs available on the market, this product features L-Leucine, L-Isoleucine and L-Valine in 2.5g, 1.25 and 1.25 grams respectively. The three come in their free form and as such do not need to be digested before they are absorbed into the body.
Other ingredients in the product are soy and Lecithin. This supplement has a 2:1:1 ratio which is perfect for most individuals.
- The product mixed well in shakes without settling at the bottom
- Contains 3 essential amino acid
- The product is bitter
5. Scivation Xtend
This is yet another powerful BCAA supplement. The product contains 2:1:1 which is the perfect ration. Each serving of this product has 7.5g of amino acid broken down to 3.5g of L-Leucine, 2.5g of L-Glutamine and 1g of Citrulline Malate.
In addition to this, electrolytes that support hydration are included in every serving. This supplement is carbohydrate free, has zero calories and is sugar fee. It is perfect for individuals observing a low card diet as well.
This supplement will help in cutting down the recovery time and will stimulate the synthesis of muscle tissues while working to balance energy in the muscle cells.
The active ingredients in this supplement include; sodium, potassium, L-Valine, L-Isoleucine, L-Leucine, Vitamin B6, L-Glutamine, L-Citrulline Malate and an electrolyte blend.
- The supplement comes with an ideal ratio of 2:1:1
- The product comes in a mango flavor. There are however many other flavors available as well
- It is sugar-free and has no calories
- Has a bad taste to some users
- The price is quite high for a product with its feature
6. Sheer BCAA Capsules
This BCAA pills features a reduced number of active ingredients which means that the unit is perfect for a specific function, in this case, improving your strength during a workout and helping you gain muscle mass.
The product will help you build muscle fast by stimulating the synthesis of protein and will help in faster muscle recovery meaning you will not feel sore for longer.
- 30 day supply
- Faster fat loss
- Boosts performance
- Not flavored so taking the capsule apart and dissolving the powder into your shake will result in a bitter taste
7. BulkSupplements Amino Acids Powder - Without Artificial Sweeteners & Sucralose
This is a high performing natural BCAA supplement. It is simple but let not the simple packaging throw you off. The product does get the job done.
The supplement can provide major power boosts and muscle growth courtesy of the L=Leucine, L-Isoleucine, and L-Valine in the ration 2:1:1, a ratio that has been proved to be the best of all.
In addition to stimulating protein synthesis and muscle growth, the product helps to maintain the muscle mass as well. The fact that the product has been lab tested for purity adds to its reputation as well.
- Lab tested for purity
- Has a 2:1:1 amino acid ratio
- Has 166 servings
- Corrects erectile dysfunction courtesy of the pine bark extract
- Bad taste for some users
- Has corn as a filler
You may also like: All you need to know about nitric oxide supplements
While all of the products listed above are great and are some of the top on the market, my pick and recommendation is the IdealLean BCAA for women. This supplement stands out from the crowd and feels like a well thought out product of high quality.
The manufacturer without a doubt paid attention to the product and what would be beneficial to women with fitness goals. As such, they added vitamins and antioxidants, ingredients that work wonders on women.
The product also has a great dose that helps in maximizing the workouts as well as increasing the gains in the performance and recovery.
For those keeping track of their calories, the zero sugar, low carb, and fat loss blend are a perfect and attractive addition. Overall, this is an excellent choice for women.