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What is taurine and can it help with sport and exercise?

¿Qué es la taurina y puede ayudar con el deporte y el ejercicio?

Taurine is an amino acid. It is found naturally in the body's tissues, with most of it found in the heart, eyes, and muscles. Amino acids are best known for being the so-called building blocks of muscle tissue.

The protein we eat in our diet is broken down into amino acids, which the body then uses to repair muscle tissue and build new muscles. But taurine, despite its reputation as a sports and exercise aid, is different. Taurine is one of the few amino acids that does not participate in this muscle development process.

Taurine is not an "essential amino acid," which is the type that your body cannot produce and so you must get it from your diet. Taurine is technically a "conditionally essential amino acid," meaning your body can produce it, but its levels can be depleted due to illness or poor nutrition.

Why does the body need taurine?

The body uses taurine for many different things, the main functions of which include allowing the body to produce bile (which helps digest fats) and helping to maintain the electrolyte balance of cells, the functioning of the central nervous system and the immune system.

Taurine also has antioxidant properties, meaning it helps protect organs against damage caused by oxidative stress. It has been linked to better overall heart and cardiovascular health. Taurine is also used to improve performance in sports and exercise.

Where is it located?

Taurine is only needed in small amounts, and in most healthy people, their body produces all the taurine it needs. A normal daily diet provides a supplement of taurine. The main sources of taurine are meat, fish, seafood and dairy products such as milk, cheese and eggs. While there are some natural vegetarian sources of taurine, they are much less easily absorbed by the body than meat, fish, and dairy. Taurine is available in greater quantities and is best absorbed by the body in supplement form, such as powders or capsules. It is also frequently added to energy drinks, although these can contain sugar and caffeine and are generally not recommended for daily consumption.

How could taurine help sports performance and exercise?

Some studies have indicated that taurine supplementation may have benefits among healthy people, especially those who exercise or play sports. Taurine supplementation has been linked to reduced fatigue, less muscle damage, and less muscle soreness after an exercise session.

In a 2013 study at the University of Stirling, taking 1000mg of taurine was found to "significantly improve" the time it took trained runners to run a distance of 3km. A Brazilian study, also from 2013, stated that taurine supplementation improves performance while decreasing muscle damage after strenuous exercise.

Is taurine supplementation safe?

Taurine supplementation is considered very safe. This is because people in studies have tolerated it well without adverse side effects, even at high doses and for long periods. However, everyone is different and if you have any concerns about taurine supplementation, please consult your GP or a registered dietician.

Sources 2 3 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih .gov/pubmed/15042451 4 5 6 https:// 7 8 /22855206 9 Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism, 2014, 39(1): 101-104 10 https://www

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