Skip to Content

Branched-Chain Amino Acids

Medically reviewed by Last updated on March 1, 2021.

What are other common names?

  • 2-Amino-3-Methylvaleric Acid
  • 2-Amino-4-Methylvaleric Acid
  • BCAA
  • BCAAs
  • Branched Chain Amino Acid Therapy
  • Essential Amino Acids
  • Isoleucine
  • Isoleucine Ethyl Ester HCl
  • L-Isoleucine
  • L-Leucine
  • L-Leucine Pyroglutamate
  • L-Valine
  • Leucine
  • Leucine Ethyl Ester HCl
  • Leucine Isovaleric Acid
  • Leucine Methyl Ester HCl
  • Valine

What is this product used for?

Branched-chain amino acids are also called BCAAs. They come from proteins found in food like red meat, chicken, fish, eggs, beans, and dairy. BCAAs may help with brain problems caused by liver damage.

What are the precautions when taking this product?

  • Always check with your doctor before you use a natural product. Some products may not mix well with other drugs or natural products.

  • Be sure to tell your doctor that you take this product if you are scheduled for surgery or tests.

  • Take extra care and check with your doctor if you have:

    • Liver problems

    • Nerve problems like motor neuron disease (ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease)

    • Diabetes

    • Seizures

    • Metabolic disorders

    • Keep hard candies, glucose tablets, liquid glucose, or juice on hand for low blood sugar.

What should I watch for?

  • Upset stomach

  • Stomach cramps

When do I need to call the doctor?

  • Signs of a very bad reaction. These include wheezing; chest tightness; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; seizures; or swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat. Go to the ER right away or call for emergency help if problems with breathing happen.

  • Signs of low blood sugar. These include anger, shaking, a fast heartbeat, confusion, or sweating.

  • Very bad belly pain

  • Very bad loose stools

Last Reviewed Date


Consumer information use

This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your healthcare provider. Only your healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to provide advice that is right for you. You should not rely on this information in deciding whether or not to use, or accept your healthcare provider’s advice regarding use of, any natural products or similar treatments, therapies, or life-style choices. This information does not endorse any natural products or similar treatments, therapies, or life-style choices as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information. It does NOT include all information about natural products, possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to you. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about your health and treatment options.


Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.