Hydroxymethyl butyrate or HMB is an organic acid that forms in the human body due to the breakdown of the amino acid leucine, which is part of BCAA.
Leucine is found in very high concentrations in muscle tissue. During strength training, micro-muscle damage leads to the destruction of leucine, and consequently an increase in HMB levels. The data indicate that an increase in the concentration of hydroxymethyl butyrate can serve as a biochemical signal for the body, which allows suppressing the destruction of muscle tissue. For this reason, hydroxymethyl butyrate has become a popular supplement in bodybuilding.
Be careful not to confuse hydroxymethyl butyrate with hydroxybutyrate. Unlike the former, hydroxybutyrate is a sedative, and is often used for recreational purposes as a narcotic.
Hydroxymethyl Butyrate in Products
Hydroxymethyl butyrate is not an indispensable nutrient, so there is no urgent need for its additional intake. HMB is found in small amounts in citrus fruits and fish. To achieve a positive effect, it is necessary to use sports nutrition with HMB, as food sources will be insufficient.
According to several recent studies, hydroxymethyl butyrate can enhance athletic performance by accelerating muscle hypertrophy in response to strength training. Indirect evidence has also been found that hydroxymethyl butyrate can improve the aerobic capacity of the body.
In a review of one of the scientific journals, a critical analysis of the latest published data on the use of HMB in sports and medical purposes was carried out. The authors came to the following conclusions:
· The supplement can effectively protect muscles from damage that occurs during muscle training;
· It is best to take it in the near-training time;
· A pronounced effect occurs after 2 weeks of use;
· Recognized optimal dose is an 36 mg/kg of body weight per day; that causes muscle hypertrophy, increases strength and performance in trained and untrained people;
· Currently, 2 main forms are available: HMB-Ca (calcium hydroxymethyl butyrate) and free acid (HMB-FA). The second form is characterized by better bioavailability, although there has not yet been a comparison of effectiveness;
· The supplement may be especially beneficial for the elderly as well as people with low mobility;
· HMB in combination with training contributes to faster fat burning;
· The mechanism of action is associated with the suppression of proteolysis and increased protein synthesis;
· Long-term use is safe for both adults and young people. No side effects have been identified.
At the moment, enough scientific data has been accumulated that confirm the effectiveness of the product, although there are quite a few works that did not reveal a pronounced positive effect. Hydroxymethyl butyrate can be useful for drying (working on relief) and losing weight, as well as for athletes who train endurance.
Experts believe that the purchase of hydroxymethyl butyrate is quite appropriate, but you can get more benefit by using BCAA, which includes leucine (but keep in mind that about 5% of HMB is formed). At the same time, some athletes give greater preference to the HMB, talking about the ability of the HMB to maintain weight on the PCT and between AAS courses.
Dosage and regimen
The optimal dose of hydroxymethyl butyrate in bodybuilding is 3 g per day. Best time for taken is a one hour before your workout.
As with any other sports nutrition, side effects often occur when low-quality supplements are purchased. According to a report by Iowa State University, hydroxymethyl butyrate is a safe drug,
however, it is not recommended for children, pregnant and lactating women, as well as people with liver and kidney pathologies. Do not exceed recommended dose.