Highlighting the Latest Science: How Beta-Alanine Supplementation Impacts Stress
This past year’s events have encouraged many to take a closer look at fitness goals and overall health. Across all populations—from the aging to the young and from non-competitive athletes to professionals—total body wellness is a point of focus. Beyond athletics and personal records, there’s an emphasis on the connection between physical and mental health, immunity and inflammation, stress and illness. As distanced as we may be during these challenging times, we’re united in reaching a common goal: resilience.
Most of us are familiar with the benefits of proper supplementation, regular exercise, and sleep, but there’s one question we may have forgotten to ask. How does stress impact our immune system? Stress triggers a rise in the hormone cortisol. Short, isolated bursts of cortisol can actually boost immunity by reducing inflammation. With chronic stress, however, the body becomes accustomed to having too much cortisol in the bloodstream. Over time, we see a decrease in the white blood cells that fight infection and an increase in inflammation. The body’s inflammatory response to stress is a critical factor we cannot ignore.
Beta-alanine and Resilience to Stress
Multiple studies have shown that elevated carnosine levels can reduce inflammation. The latest study, conducted in 2020, measured the neurophysiological response to acute heat stress in animals. They achieved these elevated levels through beta-alanine supplementation. Within the body tissues, increased carnosine levels created an anti-inflammatory response to post-traumatic stress, mild traumatic brain injury, and heat stress. These studies all reported a greater rate of resiliency when supplementing with beta-alanine.
Similar findings emerged from human studies on beta-alanine, as well. One such study monitored a group of healthy soldiers while they ran simulation drills. Despite their extreme stress during these sustained military operations drills, those soldiers who consumed beta-alanine had elevated anti-inflammatory markers.
Beta-alanine supplementation does much more than assist the body in combating stress. It has not only been scientifically proven to improve performance, mental focus, and endurance, it’s also been shown to speed recovery time and support resilience. For athletes recovering from a mild injury–like heat stress–a speedy recovery is crucial.
How Resilience to Stress Balances Mood
Beta-alanine’s ability to increase resilience to stress enables another health benefit—balanced mood. The hippocampus is the part of the brain that’s responsible for behavior and memory. Neurotrophins support those neurons helping to maintain normal functioning. Under stressful conditions, we’ll often see a decrease in neurotrophins and healthy neuronal function.
Beta-alanine supplementation has been shown to promote a more balanced mood, calm nerves, and alleviate occasional, everyday anxiety. Several animal studies have consistently pointed to the reason for this. Beta-alanine supplementation increases neurotrophins or the proteins that impact the survival, development, and function of neurons. In other words, beta-alanine stimulates the body to defend itself against the negative effects of stress.
As we continue to seek ways to strengthen our immune health and combat inflammation and stress, supplementing with CarnoSyn® and SR CarnoSyn® beta-alanine can help by facilitating a healthy stress response and promoting total body wellness and resilience.