Beta-alanine is a non-essential amino acid. Non-essential amino acids can be made by the body, so they don't have to be provided by food. Most amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. However, some like beta-alanine are used to make other chemicals in the body.
Beta-alanine is commonly used by mouth for improving athletic performance and exercise capacity, building lean muscle mass, and improving physical functioning in the elderly. It is also used for hot flashes, but there is limited scientific research to support this use.
Taking beta-alanine can modestly improve some measures of athletic performance. However, not all research shows positive effects with beta-alanine on athletic performance.
Scientists are trying to determine why beta-alanine might work better for some types of exercise than others. Some scientists think that beta-alanine might help to improve the amount of exercise done but not how well it is done. The conflicting results might be due to the small numbers of participants in the studies, the different types of exercise used in the studies, or the types of athletes studied.
Effects & Safety
When taken by mouth: Beta-alanine is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth appropriately for a short time. Side effects have not been reported with moderate doses of beta-alanine. High doses can cause flushing and tingling. Taking a tablet instead of drinking a solution made from beta-alanine powder might reduce these side effects.
Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking beta-alanine if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
For athletic performance: 2.4-6.4 grams of beta-alanine daily has been used for up to 10