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Your body can naturally produce HMB, but only when the essential, branched chain amino acid, leucine is present. When leucine is available in the body, a part of it tends to be metabolised into HMB. Although, HMB can be produced in the body, leucine can’t – this means you have to source leucine in your diet through foods such as meat, fish and eggs. The higher your leucine levels are, the more HMB is produced. And, of course, the higher your protein levels are, the more energy available to burn during exercise and support muscle development and growth.
Also known as beta-hydroxy-beta-methyl-butyrate, HMB can be supplemented into your regime to support your training goals. Here we look at some of the benefits you may see if you supplement HMB.
Maintain HMB levels
Your body generally relies on the essential amino acid, leucine for HMB production. However, it can be externally sourced. By supplementing HMB into your regime, you are eliminating your bodies dependence on the branched-chain amino acid for HMB production. Instead, you maintain HMB levels via supplements and diet.
To build new muscle mass, protein synthesis must exceed protein breakdown. If protein breakdown exceeds synthesis instead, muscle mass is lost. When protein breakdown is reduced, synthesis has the opportunity to exceed breakdown and in turn new muscle can be built.
If you are following a calorie-deficit diet whilst training hard, your body can be at risk of entering a catabolic state whereby it breaks down muscle protein for energy,Instead.
Your body requires protein to start repairing its muscles. For HMB to be produced, protein levels must be sufficient.