Sunday, November 29, 2020

BPI Sports Best BCAA Supplement Review For 2020

Here's what you need to know about this popular product.

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BPI Sports Best BCAA is a branched-chain amino acid powder that is marketed for lean muscle support and recovery. It’s a popular option for performance-aiding supplementation as are many of the brand’s products. And the great thing about BPI Sports is that they’ve been around for a while and are a reputable company.

But we wanted to review their ‘Best BCAA’ specifically, to see how it stacks up overall. So, we’ll try to break down the ingredients the best we can to see if the formula delivers. Then hopefully, you’ll be able to make a decision based on the information we’ve provided you with.

Read: 7 best BCAA supplements of 2020

First though, here are the pros and cons…

Pros 

  • Reasonably priced 
  • Has a good dose of BCAAs
  • No artificial colors
  • Sugar-free
  • Third-party tested
  • cGMP certified

Cons

  • Artificial flavors and sweeteners
  • Maltodextrin 
  • Contains tree nuts (not ideal for everyone)
  • Uses additives (can cause digestive discomfort)
  • Complaints of taste from possible change in formula

50% OFF

BPI Sports Best BCAA Powder

BPI Sports Best BCAA Powder supports muscle protein synthesis, decrease protein catabolism, enhance recovery, boost performance. Third-party tested. Fast absorbing BCAA.

Best BCAA ingredients

A serving provides 2.5g Leucine, 1.25g isoleucine, and 1.25g valine (branched-chain amino acids) plus 250mg agmatine sulfate.

There’s also an ‘omega-6 fatty acids and CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) matrix’ proprietary blend that consists of safflower oil powder, avocado oil powder, and coconut oil powder.

Other ingredients include maltodextrin, natural and artificial flavors, citric acid, Oligopeptide-enzymatic technology, silica, sucralose, malic acid fiber blend (cellulose gum, xanthan gum, and carrageenan) and acesulfame K.

Bpi Sports BCAA Ingredients
Bpi Sports BCAA Ingredients

Ingredients breakdown/benefits

Branched-chain amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) make up three of the nine essential amino acids. Therefore, these nutrients are not made in the body and must be consumed through diet. ‘Branched-chain’ refers to the chemical structure that is found in animal products. 

Here are some of the benefits…

Muscle growth

Leucine is the most important BCAA for muscle growth as it plays a big role in muscle protein synthesis. Although, research shows that we need all essential amino acids for maximum muscle growth. (1, 2, 3)

So you can better maximize the effectiveness of BCAA intake by consuming a complete protein that supplies all nine essential amino acids. (4)

Otherwise, supplementing with BCAA alone will limit the potential effects on muscle tissue support.

Reduced exercise fatigue and soreness

Fatigue gets the best of all of us at some point during a training session. Our muscles use BCCAs during physical activity, which causes the levels in your blood to decrease. As a result, the amino acid tryptophan increases in the brain which then converts to serotonin and this is believed to be the cause of exercise-induced fatigue. (5, 6

But the ingestion of BCAAs has shown to improve this factor. Although, it has not proven to have a positive effect on exercise performance. (7, 8)

Soreness can also be improved by supplementing with BCAAs. This is good news because delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) can last for anywhere from 12-72 hours on average. It can also be rather uncomfortable and even painful in some instances.

But BCAA intake has shown to reduce muscle damage which is believed to be the cause of soreness. Therefore, it plays a role in the deceleration of protein breakdown. (9, 10)

Agmatine sulfate is the other main ingredient in Best BCAA. It’s a metabolite of L-arginine that functions as a neurotransmitter and it has been shown to be a promising chemical for neuropathic uses and even cognitive health. However, there isn’t much evidence for the potential benefits of oral use in humans.

In supplements, agmatine sulfate is added for the potential nitric oxide boosting properties. It may contribute to an increase in nitric oxide production in the muscles because it influences the enzyme eNOS. (11

Omega-6/CLA

CLA contains omega-6 fatty acids which are polyunsaturated fats or natural trans fats. Linoleic acid is found in plants/vegetable oils. In nutritional supplements, CLA is derived from oils, albeit, in a chemically-altered form.

So naturally, you won’t get the same effects from supplementation as you would natural food sources. But as far as potential benefits, the CLA in Best BCAA is added for efficient fat utilization. However, studies are not promising for fat/weight loss effects.

In fact, CLA has shown to be much more beneficial for burning fat in animals than humans. One study, for example, found that CLA reduced body fat by 70% in mice after six weeks of supplementation. (12)

But typical studies on humans show very insignificant effects even when compared to placebo groups. One review of random control studies concluded that CLA offers no relevant effects on body composition long term. This seems to be the consensus from most studies and even in short term studies, the results aren’t optimistic. (13, 14)

CLA may not even be safe in large doses over the long term which is something to consider as well. (15)

Bpi Sports BCAA
Bpi Sports BCAA

Other ingredients

Maltodextrin is the first ingredient among the additional ingredients found in Best BCAA. It does have an effect on blood sugar although we don’t know how much is used in the product. This may be taken into consideration for certain individuals.

The powder also contains artificial flavors and sweeteners which is a dealbreaker for a lot of people. Although, these sweeteners (sucralose and acesulfame K) used have been deemed safe by the FDA. But, long term, there’s no way to tell if you’ll experience side effects.

Some people also experience digestive discomfort with artificial ingredients.

Best BCAA also contains food additives as fiber (cellulose gum, xanthan gum, and carrageenan). These substances are also approved for use by the FDA. However, they can cause digestive and similar issues for some users. There needs to be more long-term research though to determine whether safe in large amounts for long periods.

Effectiveness of ingredients

Each dose of Best BCAA supplies an effective amount and ratio (2:1:1) of branched-chain amino acids. BCAAs definitely promote improvements in exercise performance. But as explained previously, you need all nine essential amino acids to optimally support lean muscle.

Therefore, your overall diet will ultimately determine your results. Supplementation can certainly help the process though. 

As far as agmatine sulfate and CLA, these substances may have some positive effects. Although, the studies are very mixed for both. We think users may experience benefits from these ingredients but to a very small degree. 

Mixability

The mixability of the powder hasn’t shown to be an issue for most users. Therefore, we’d say it’s not a concern and it’ll dissolve just fine in most cases. 

Taste 

This has been very mixed. In fact, many recent users have complained that there’s a change in flavor that isn’t as pleasant. However, we can’t speak for all users. Just something to keep in mind which seems to be the case with the product currently. 

Bpi Best BCAA Taste
Bpi Best BCAA Taste

Price

The cost of Best BCAA is pretty reasonable at much less than a buck per serving. This is about an average for a 60 serving container and on par with other similar products considering it contains more than BCAAs. 

Overall Rating

  • Ingredients: 8.75/10
  • Taste: 7/10
  • Mixability: 8.5/10
  • Price: 9/10

50% OFF

BPI Sports Best BCAA Powder

BPI Sports Best BCAA Powder supports muscle protein synthesis, decrease protein catabolism, enhance recovery, boost performance. Third-party tested. Fast absorbing BCAA.

Is Best BCAA worth the buy? 

For the ingredients and price, Best BCAA could be a viable option for supplementing your branched-chain amino acids. We’ve already discussed the potential benefits of the main ingredients and now you know what to likely expect.

As far as the taste, well that’s a mixed bag. Although, this is, of course, a subjective aspect of supplementation. You’ll just have to do your due diligence before buying to hopefully make a good decision. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What are BCAAs?

BCAAs or branched-chain amino acids are building blocks of protein. The three BCAAs include leucine, valine, and isoleucine which are essential amino acids.

What are the benefits of BCAAs?

Research has shown that BCAAs in combination with all nine essential amino acids can elicit maximum muscle tissue support.

BCAAs can also help to reduce exercise-induced fatigue and soreness following exercise.

Are BCAA supplements worth taking?

That’s debatable however, research supports supplementing with BCAAs but only in addition to complete protein sources.

Otherwise, you won’t get nearly the same potentially beneficial effects. You should not try to replace a complete diet with supplements though as you’ll definitely lose out with that strategy.

When is the best time to take BCAAs?

We recommend taking BCAAs according to the product directions. As of currently, there’s no conclusive recommendation as for an optimal time to do so. (16)

Research shows that intake before and after training can be equally as effective. (17)

You can take it around training according to what you feel works best for you.

How much BCAAs should I take for the best effects?

Research shows that consuming 91 mg per pound (200 mg per kg) of body weight daily (even on non-exercise days) is likely to have the best effects on skeletal muscle damage. (18)

But again, we recommend following the product label instructions to ensure you’re taking an optimal dose. BCAAs are also found in foods too so no need to take more than what a supplement will offer in addition to your diet.

On average though, 10-20 grams of BCAAs per day are used in most studies that show benefits.

Do BCAAs have side effects?

BCAAs are generally safe when taken in the recommended dosages and even up to 35g per day. (19)

Although, if you do have any health issues then we recommend asking your medical provider before taking as certain conditions may warrant avoiding supplementing with BCAAs.

Wrapping up

BPI Sports Best BCAA seems like a decent product if you’re looking to supplement with branched-chain amino acids. It can definitely aid in reducing exercise fatigue and soreness to a degree. And in combination with a good diet that consists of complete protein sources, you’ll also benefit from lean muscle support as well. 

The added ingredients have shown some promise for specific uses. Although, their effects will more than likely be subtle when supplementing with Best BCAA

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The Review

BPI Sports BCAA Supplement

8.3 Score

BPI Sports Best BCAA seems like a decent product if you're looking to supplement with branched-chain amino acids. It can definitely aid in reducing exercise fatigue and soreness to a degree. And in combination with a good diet that consists of complete protein sources, you'll also benefit from lean muscle support as well. 

PROS

  • Reasonably priced 
  • Has a good dose of BCAAs
  • No artificial colors
  • Sugar-free
  • Third-party tested
  • cGMP certified

CONS

  • Artificial flavors and sweeteners
  • Maltodextrin 
  • Contains tree nuts (not ideal for everyone)
  • Uses additives (can cause digestive discomfort)
  • Complaints of taste from possible change in formula

Review Breakdown

  • Ingredients
  • Taste
  • Mixability
  • Price

BPI Sports BCAA Supplement DEALS

We collect information from many stores for best price available

Best Price

$24.99

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Matthew Magnante
Matthew Magnante
Matthew Magnante is the senior writer for Fitness Volt. He has had a passion for fitness since elementary school and continues to research and learn how to build muscle effectively through training and diet. He also loves to help others to achieve their fitness goals and spread the knowledge where needed. Matthew's other passions include learning about mindfulness, strolling through nature, and always working to improve overall.

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Fact-checked

This article was written by one of our qualified writers, and fact-checked by our experts. The numbers in parentheses (e.g. 1, 2, 3, etc.) throughout the article, are reference links to peer-reviewed studies.

Our team of experts include a board-certified physician, nutritionists, dietitians, certified personal trainers, strength training experts, and exercise specialists.