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Amino acid is the building block of protein, which is one of the most important requirements of our body. There are two types of amino acids: essential and nonessential. The nonessential acids are produced inside our body, hence we do not require them as supplements. But, the essential acids are the ones which we need to get from various sources. Amino acid sources include meat, eggs, cheese, milk, etc. Nowadays, you can get essential amino acid in the form of supplements. Usually these supplements are harmless, on the contrary, they are beneficial for health. However, some of them can have serious consequences if taken in excess.

Uses

Amino acid is a very beneficial element of our body. It is used for many purposes like building muscles, improving digestive system, immune system, and neurotransmitter functions, and producing energy. The most common amino acids used as supplements are lysine, n-acetyl cysteine, tryptophan, phenylalanine, acetyl l-carnitine, histidine, carnitine, carnosine, arginine, cysteine, DLPA, GABA, glutamine, glutathione, glycine, ornithine, taurine, and tyrosine. Following are their uses:
  • They are very helpful for the athletes as they help buildup power and recover muscle fatigue in a very less time.
  • They help burn fats, and thereby reduce weight.
  • They are very helpful in the ADHD (Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) found in children. They improve the working of neurotransmitters, which helps them with their memory and behavior.
Side Effects

Usually, overdose of these supplements leads to side effects. Therefore, the most important thing is to take the supplements only when they are recommended by the doctor, and the dose should not exceed the recommended level. Following are some of their side effects:
  • Supplements such as arginine and creatine are used to improve the immune system and protein synthesis. Overdose of these supplements can lead to nausea, abdominal cramps, and discomfort.
  • Overdose of glutamine supplements can cause skin irritation. It can cause tingling of the skin, skin rash, redness, and itching.
  • Glutamine and cysteine supplements overdose can cause vomiting. In severe conditions, it may also cause blood in vomiting.
  • Excess consumption of arginine and glutamine supplements may cause diarrhea.
  • Some of the supplements can put pressure on the kidney, which may lead to kidney problems.
  • Abnormal heart beats can also be observed as a side effect.
  • Unbalanced amino acid supplements may create other health-related problems.
  • Anxiety, irritability, fatigue and depression are also among the common amino acid side effects.
  • In few cases, it can also cause blood abnormalities, which in severe cases, even lead to death. Sudden decrease in the blood pressure can also be observed.
If you are recommended these supplements by a doctor, then you should be very cautious while taking the dose as excess dose may be harmful. Remember the instructions of the doctor and follow them strictly. While supplementing, you should increase the intake of vitamin B6 and vitamin C as they help in the metabolism of the amino acids and increase their absorption.

Disclaimer: This Buzzle article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.