The branched-chain amino acids leucine, isoleucine and valine are amino acids that are considered unique among their class because they are produced in the skeletal muscles, not inside the liver. They are largely produced by various types of fungi, bacteria and plants. Since humans do not produce these amino acids, they must be consumed through the diet.
Leucine is considered an ergogenic substance for its ability to enhance physical performance. It is the only amino acid that can produce proteins in the muscle therefore preventing the gradual deterioration of the body's muscle tissues.
In the body, leucine is most effectively used in the liver, muscle tissues and body fats. Those found in body fats and muscles tissues are used in the production of sterols or steroid alcohols. A part of this is cholesterol which is a very important component in the proper functioning of cells in the body.
Whey protein is a very rich source of branched-chain amino acids. This is the reason why this dietary supplement is used by bodybuilders to build muscle mass and strengthen muscle tissues. It is packed with the performance-enhancing leucine which is effective in repairing damaged muscle tissues after physical exertion and trauma.