Arachidonic Acid – A new age of mass-builders
Arachidonic acid is an essential acid considered to be a part of the Omega-6 group. It’s the primary building block for the synthesis of dienolic prostaglandins, which includes both PGE2 and PGF2. These are prostaglandins that are tightly involved with the protein synthesis and muscle hypertrophy, two things that occur after exercise.
Arachidonic acid is also involved with amplified IGF-1 (Insulin-Like Growth Factor) signaling, the enhancement of satellite cell activation and proliferation, increased regeneration of your body’s muscle cells, increased formation of Nitric Oxide, as well as enhanced androgen receptor synthesis.
Additional benefits that arachidonic acid provides include the long-term improvements of vascularity, through stimulation of angiogenesis (blood vessel regeneration) in the muscles in your body that are trained. Arachidonic acid also improves body composition by partitioning the negative nutrients found in our body through inhibition of stearoyl-CoA desaturase-1.
The Exercise & Sports Nutrition Laboratory at BaylorUniversity conducted the first placebo-controlled study on the use of arachidonic acid to improve athletic performance. This was a preliminary investigation, with only 50 days of supplementation and a small number of participants. In spite of these limitations, the study concluded with the arachidonic acid taking subjects outperforming those using placebo on all measures of strength and performance. Peak power was significant better in the arachidonic acid group (600% increase).
Little research has been done on how much AA should be taken however the general consensus is 1000mg split into two doses. You may also benefit from ingesting the full 1000mg dose 60-90 minutes pre workout. Users can experience an increase in DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). Don’t be alarmed as this is a good thing!