Arachidonic acid, a part of the Omega-6 group, is an essential acid. Typically, stored in the cell membranes and is the first to signal that a repair is needed for the body's damaged muscles. And thanks to William Llewellyn, a performance-enhancing scientist who studied and developed arachidonic acid supplementation protocols for enhanced muscle growth. Now you have a question that Is Arachidonic acid a steroid? Well, It is not a steroid; as we tell you, it is a part of the Omega-6 group.
Arachidonic Acid Benefits
- Considered the main component in creating diabolic prostaglandins such as PGE2 and PGF2, Arachidonic acid helps produce protein synthesis and muscle hypertrophy. These two processes occur right after doing strenuous activities such as exercise.
- Arachidonic acid is also responsible for amplified IGF-1 (Insulin-Like Growth Factor) signaling, which enhances satellite cell proliferation and activation. This also increases the regeneration rate of one's muscle cells, androgen receptor synthesis, and Nitric Oxide formation.
- Arachidonic acid also improves vascularity, which can be obtained through the stimulation of angiogenesis (blood vessel regeneration) in the trained muscles in your body. It also enhances body composition by subdividing harmful nutrients and inhibiting stearoyl-CoA desaturase-1.
- Arachidonic acid also inhibits resistin.
- Amateur and professional athletes and individuals in weight training may greatly benefit from arachidonic acid supplements. It is a known fact that as one shift into high gear, arachidonic acid levels in the body decrease typically, affecting the production of anabolic prostaglandins.
Read More: The Role of PGF2a in Muscle Growth
- Arachidonic acid is commonly used by bodybuilders, regular gym attendees, and active individuals who play physical sports daily or participate in activities that require rapid bursts of performance. Athletes who experience reduced levels of arachidonic acid will notice a decline in the muscle's ability to stimulate muscle growth, also known as training stagnation.
As a common practice, long-term usage typically consumes 75mg to 250mg daily and between 500mg and 1000mg daily for a rapid, short-term effect. It still depends on the individual's purpose for taking in arachidonic acid.
Effects To The Body
Individuals who are taking in arachidonic acid may experience the following:
- Soreness of the muscles and joints
However, most arachidonic acid takers do not share any side effects.
Arachidonic acid is not advisable for individuals who are not actively participating in physical activities and pregnant females. It is also not advisable for individuals with a variety of diseases and conditions, such as:
- High blood pressure
- Prostate enlargement
- High cholesterol
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Heart disease
- Any inflammatory disease
Mechanism Of Work
Arachidonic Acid (AA or ARA) is a polyunsaturated omega-6 fatty acid commonly found in dietary animals such as meat, eggs, and dairy or by biosynthesis from linoleic acid.
Arachidonic acid plays an unprecedented role in the repair and growth of skeletal muscle tissue, thus making arachidonic acid a significant dietary component in muscle growth and development.
Nutritional supplements that boost strength and muscle mass and improve training performance will probably contain arachidonic acid.
Arachidonic Acid and Bodybuilding
An increase in strenuous activities has shown that it consumed the omega-6 fatty acid levels in the skeletal muscles. Bodybuilders who use arachidonic acid as a supplement can significantly benefit them. Arachidonic acid is not considered decadent; it becomes one if linoleic acid is deficient.
Arachidonic Acid And Exercise
In a study performed on 31 resistance-trained males in a randomized and double-blind manner, either with arachidonic acid (1 gram per day, n = 15) or a placebo (1 gram of corn oil per day, n = 16), that was doing a 4-day per week training for 50 days. Positive results were obtained from the group that intakes arachidonic acid (0.3 ± 1.2 W·kg-1).
A relative increase in peak power is recorded at 7.1% and average power at 3.6% after the 50-day training period compared to the placebo group (0.2 ± 0.7 W·kg-1). However, arachidonic acid did not directly impact muscle mass or weight lifting measures of power (bench press and leg press).
The study shows inconclusive preliminary evidence that the best arachidonic acid supplements can enhance resistance training. This study was funded by Molecular Nutrition (arachidonic acid manufacturer and patent holder).
In another study conducted on thirty recreationally trained males participating in an 8-week, 3-day per week resistance-training program, arachidonic acid takes showed more significant lean body mass gains and skeletal muscle thickness than the placebo group. The total power and strength are also importing placebo group.
With the conclusion of the clinical study, total testosterone levels and cortisol concentrations were unchanged after the 50-day study period.
Arachidonic Acid And Inflammation
Inflammation is the body's immune system fighting off infection and injury. Eccentric and concentric muscle training can also result in acute inflammation. Some disorders can also result in inflammation, such as arthritis, allergies, asthma, obesity, atherosclerosis, etc. In theory, localized inflammation may have an anabolic effect.
Arachidonic acid, when oxygenated, transforms into a variety of products, and some facilitate inflammatory reactions. Arachidonic acid stimulates the production of pro-inflammatory prostaglandins and leukotrienes through the COX (cyclooxygenase), LOX (lipoxygenase), and cytochrome P450 enzyme conversion process.
However, studies are showing mixed results. It is being argued that the intake of omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids may lead to a conflict between omega-6 and omega-3 metabolism that can result in lesser production of anti-inflammatory from omega-3. On the test conducted on the human subjects, high intakes of omega-6 created no association with the inflammatory markers' elevated level.
However, arachidonic acid is known to aggravate symptoms of joint pains or active inflammatory disease because it is presumed that the acid is being converted to inflammatory compounds. It is therefore suggested that individuals who have the inflammatory disease do not consume high levels of arachidonic acid.