Essential Amino Acids Explained

Essential and Non-Essential Amino Acids: What’s The Difference? (Part One)

In the health and wellness industry, there is a lot of talk surrounding amino acids — from sports performance to building muscle, pre-workout to post-workouts — they are crucial to our optimum health.

Protein is a macronutrient for a reason — it assists our bodies in many major functions from bone support and the structure of your skin and muscles to hormone and neurotransmitter health. Amino acids enter the picture as the building blocks of protein which is why many are concerned with the types and amount of amino acids they are getting.

So, what is the big fuss over essential and non-essential amino acids?

Amino acids are the main components of our pre-, intra-, and post-workout formulations found in Oh!mino. Our products contain optimized essential amino acids to fuel and enhance your workout. Learn more about amino acids in today’s post.


The Key Players - Amino Acids


As we mentioned above, amino acids are what build and comprise protein, and are largely found in your skin, connective tissues, and muscles — which is why great sources of protein are often from meat.

How many amino acids are there?

The complete profile of amino acids is 20 — 11 non-essential and nine essential. Each amino acid plays a key role in the maintenance of you — amino acids have been found in almost every biological process in the body. Do you like when a wound heals or appreciate muscle growth? You can thank an amino acid.

It is clear that our bodies need amino acids to not only survive but to function optimally, but the confusion surrounds the amino acids we need (essential) and those that our bodies make (non-essential). Once your body gets what it needs from rich amino acid sources — Oh!mino is one example — your sleep will improve, you’ll have better exercise sessions, and your mood will be improved.

Non-Essential Amino Acids - The Amino Acids Your Body Can Produce

  1. Arginine
  2. Alanine
  3. Asparagine
  4. Cysteine
  5. Glutamate
  6. Asparatate
  7. Glycine
  8. Proline
  9. Serine
  10. Tyrosine
  11. Glutamine

It is important to recognize that some of the amino acids listed above are considered to be “conditionally essential” meaning that, yes the body can make it, but under stress or illness states, the body may require more.

Essential Amino Acids - The Amino Acids Your Body Cannot Make

  1. *Lysine
  2. *+Leucine
  3. *+Isoleucine
  4. Tryptophan
  5. *Phenylalanine
  6. *Threonine
  7. *+Valine
  8. *Histidine
  9. *Methionine

* Essential amino acids in Oh!Mino

+ Branched-chain amino acids (BCAA)


What are branch-chained amino acids (BCAAs)?


BCAA are a part of the essential amino acids our bodies require and are comprised of leucine, isoleucine, and valine. Unlike the others, their shape is branched it its molecular structure. Most of the 20 amino acids are broken down in your liver, whereas BCAA are broken down in your muscle. Because of this, they are thought to improve exercise performance and reduce muscle breakdown.  

Amino acids are a necessary component to our health — and we’ve only just begun! Stay tuned for part two where you’ll learn more about the benefits of optimized amino acids and the dangers of a protein deficiency.


If you are ready to experience the benefits of optimized amino acids, shop our products today!


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