Eulogizing the wonderful benefits of betaine may take a whole day, and I’m not bluffing. Betaine has been an excellent supplement for decades, but it has only grown in popularity recently, thanks to studies. Betaine is also known as trimethylglycine. Benefits you can gain from regular betaine supplementation include improved cardiovascular health, enhanced body composition, and better muscle control. All these benefits are associated with betaine’s ability to foster protein synthesis.
What Is Betaine?
As earlier said, betaine has been in use for a long time. Betaine is an amino acid derived from choline. That is, for the body to synthesize betaine, choline has to be present. We can rightly say that betaine is an end product of glycine and choline.
Betaine is a methyl donor, much like folate, vitamin B12, and specific B vitamins. This underlines its beneficial roles in proper cellular functioning, general detoxification, and liver functions.
Regardless of these benefits, the most important function of betaine is protein-synthesizing. Perhaps, this explains why the ability of betaine to convert homocysteine to methionine in the blood is its most researched benefit as a supplement.
NB: Some of us may not understand the importance of homocysteine conversion, as it is crucial to several body processes. We know this, but research has established that too high levels of this amino acid in the body encourage plaque buildup and clogged arteries.
Highlighting 5 Wonderful Benefits of Betaine
Betaine is vastly beneficial. It offers support to nearly every bodily function, which is rare among supplements these days. Little wonder it couldn’t remain undiscovered anymore. We can’t afford to keep missing out on such a gem. Below, we will look at five great benefits you stand to gain when you supplement with betaine.
Improved Cardiovascular Health
Just above, we mentioned that the amino acid, homocysteine, can be harmful to health if it becomes too much in the body. Its consequences, we listed, could be a buildup of plaque as well as clogged arteries, which are two conditions directly linked to heart degeneration.
Fortunately, with regular betaine supplementation, you can keep homocysteine levels moderate and beneficial in the body. It’s how they say, “an excess of everything is bad”.
In the normal human population, only 5% have homocysteine levels higher than 15 μmol/L, but when testing people with heart or stroke problems, this percentage surges to 50%. I’m not sure you need further proof of the correlation between high homocysteine levels and poor cardiovascular health.
By helping to regulate homocysteine, betaine prevents plaque buildup or clogged up arteries, thus considerably reducing the risk of heart disease.
Nearly every health enthusiast knows the dangers associated with inflammation. True, it is a part of your body’s healing routine, but it is also a precursor to several unhealthy conditions. Thankfully, you do not have to worry about chronic inflammation with betaine usage.
Recent studies have proven that betaine has strong anti-inflammatory properties. This ability is, to an extent, attributed to its essence in the metabolism of sulfur amino acid, which lowers oxidative stress, suppresses inflammatory responses, mitigates apoptosis, and moderates energy metabolism.
By sponsoring these body functions, betaine effectively reduces the risk of developing several illnesses, including Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, obesity, and cancer.
Enhanced Body Composition
If you would appreciate a chiseled body and steroids aren’t your thing, maybe betaine can help. Research is still not absolute in its declaration of betaine to enhance body composition, but there are promising results reported in animal and selective human studies. In both cases, supplementing with betaine has been shown to increase muscle mass and reduce fat mass.
There are several studies to this effect. In 2009, a college study reported that students could perform more squat repetitions due to strengthened muscle endurance following betaine supplementation.
This was followed up by a 2013 publication in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition. The study was to test the significance of regular betaine supplementation on fat loss, endurance, strength, and overall body composition. Following six weeks, every participant grew bigger muscles in the arms, could perform more squats and bench press repetitions, and, lastly, looked fitter than ever.
Supportive To Liver Function & Detoxification
Earlier, we mentioned that the most critical essence of betaine is its ability to process fats, which is specifically evident in this benefit. By processing lipids, liver digestive fats, and aiding detoxification, betaine ensures that you enjoy excellent liver health.
Conditions, such as diabetes and obesity, or a lifestyle, such as alcohol abuse, can cause fat to accumulate dangerously in the liver. Variably or invariably, liver malfunctioning results in a breakdown in every body process. Luckily, betaine can spur the cleansing functions of the liver, which are decomposing and removing fats.
Toxin exposure may no longer be devastating, thanks to betaine’s capability to assist the liver in flushing out toxins. Not to forget, betaine shields the liver from hepatotoxins like carbon tetrachloride and ethanol, which are harmful compounds that sneak into the body through certain drugs and medications.
Studies preach the beneficial contributions of betaine to digestion. This is because betaine hydrochloride, which is a byproduct of betaine, helps to increase the levels of hydrochloric acid in the belly, which is a mandatory presence for the body to break down foods and absorb nutrients.
Thus, betaine hydrochloride is recommended to people with digestive problems due to insufficient acid levels in the stomach. It will be helpful to use this supplement before eating; doing so will help process foods faster and better.
Importantly, betaine may help to encourage the growth of beneficial gut bacteria, which is crucial to many body functions, least of all immune fortification.
Concluding The Wonderful Benefits of Betaine
As you will agree, betaine supplementation is beneficial. A look at the wonderful benefits of betaine above is just enough to convince you. To impress you, there are other benefits you can enjoy from betaine, some of which are ache and pain relief, repair of alcoholic damage on the body, and fostering of healthy skin.