BCAA’s and Ornithine, improve your response capacity

BCAA’s and Ornithine, improve your response capacity

The branched chain amino acids (BCAA’s) that we take during the workout can improve the central fatigue. In fact, this has been proven with psychomotor performance tests. In this article, we are going to explore a new combination: BCAA’s and Ornithine

Urea cycle

You can find out more information about the BCAA’s here – https://www.hsnstore.eu/blog/nutrition/amino-acids/bcaas-branched-chain-amino-acids/

BCAA’s to Decrease the Fatigue?

The main hypothesis is that one of the reasons we cannot decrease the intra-workout fatigue is due to the hyperammonemia (excess of ammonia) from the amino acid metabolism. In fact, this phenomenon can buffer its beneficial effects on the psychomotor performance.

A research group has carried several studies regarding the use of BCAA supplementation during the workout. In addition, they have suggested its combination with L-ornithine L-aspartate, which is an element that lowers the ammonia levels during exhausting exercise.

One of the methods that was used measured the reaction time before visual and sound stimuli. This helped to asses the psychomotor performance (faster response – shorter reaction time – technically better performance).

Why take BCAA’s during the workout?

Let’s not forget that according to the free tryptophan hypothesis, taking BCAA’s during the workout will increase their plasma concentration. Consequently, the tryptophan brain levels will drop. Therefore, the amount of serotonin in the brain will be low (delaying the onset of central fatigue).

Tryptophan Hypothesis

Moreover, they also analyzed the perceived exertion, heartbeat, lactate or the free tryptophan VS BCAA relation

On the contrary, the BCAA’s could lower the catecholamin levels. Consequently, this would improve the performance despite its effects on serotonin. In these circumstances, the importance of the central fatigue marker is quite interesting


Combining BCAA’s + L-ornithine L-aspartate significantly reduced the plasma ammonia levels during the recovery phase

Likewise, the relation between free tryptophan and BCAA’s was lower in the group that took the previous supplementation. Accordingly, the reaction time to stimuli were better in that same group due to the lower serotonin levels.

Strength increase during exercise

The reaction time refers to the average time between the stimulation of a sensorial organ and the beginning of a motor response

A strength workout is similar to how we produce strength per unit of time (RFD, Rate of Force Development). This variable is essential when it comes to measuring how fast an individual can develop strength. Visually, you could observe the speed of the first stages of a movement to overcome the sticking points.

Strength and Time


Thus, even though it needs to be supported by similar research, combining 0.04-0.05 of L-ornithine L-aspartate per kg of body weight with BCAA’s could be interesting. In fact, it could be particularly useful for exercises or activities that require a fast reaction capacity. Although this dose is meant for people who do not suffer from obesity.

Keep reading about this topic:

  • Read more about the relation of BCAA’s with long duration sports
  • BCAA's during cutting phase


  1. Mikulski T, Dabrowski J, Hilgier W, Ziemba A, Krzeminski K. Effects of supplementation with branched chain amino acids and ornithine aspartate on plasma ammonia and central fatigue during exercise in healthy men. Folia Neuropathol. 2015;53(4):377-86.
BCAA's and Ornithine Review

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About Mario Muñoz
Mario Muñoz
Mario Muñoz is an enthusiast in the field of research, as reflected in each of his articles published with excellent scientific rigour.
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