Pure Amino Acids
Low Protein Diets
Patients with reduced kidney or liver function are required to restrict protein, since their ability to handle the nitrogen waste of oxidized amino acids is limited. In liver disease, reduced ability to synthesize urea leads to ammonia accumulation. Ammonia is neurotoxic and contributes to the syndrome of brain dysfunction in liver failure, hepatic encephalopathy. Patients with reduced kidney or liver function are required to restrict protein, since their ability to handle the nitrogen waste of oxidized amino acids is limited. Fluctuating levels of ammonia influences brain cell function; they should be considered whenever brain function is abnormal. Some children are born with metabolic abnormalities in the handling of amino acids and ammonia. They often present with malfunctioning brains.
The use of elemental nutrient formulas is useful in reducing or eliminating proteins from the diet. The formulas provide a precise intake of amino acids in a well balanced mixture – impossible to achieve with food.
The substitution of pure amino acids for protein changes the intake rules. We believe that amino acids are more efficient than food protein at maintaining a positive nitrogen balance. Moreover, amino acids in their pure form tend to be completely absorbed and utilized as amino acids and not lost in the feces or burned as fuel.
The amino acid mix in Alpha ENF, PMX, DMX and AAX is a complete balanced set of amino acids which means that “protein quality” is the highest available. No one has accurately determined the need for high quality amino acid intake, but our contention is that amino acid requirements may be a low as 20-50% of the recommended protein requirement (meaning the amount of food protein in the diet). Adequate intake of energy molecules, both carbohydrate and fats, is said to “spare protein”, permitting a small protein intake to maintain positive nitrogen balance. In metabolic studies, the total amount of nitrogen intake is compared with the total excretion of nitrogen to assess protein balance. Excess amino acids are converted to fuel.We have thought a lot about the relationship between the food intake of protein and the intakes of pure amino acids in one of our elemental nutrient formulas. A naive assumption is that amino acid intake and protein intake are the same. If you decide that a patient needs 75 Grams of protein per day and you want to replace the protein with amino acids, you assume you have to give them 75 grams of amino acids. Not so. If you look at RDA values for protein, you get the wrong idea that amino acid intake level has to the same as protein intake but we believe that a daily intake of 25 grams of free form amino acids will be adequate for most people, most of the time. RDA protein values are crude approximations based on food protein values. The proteins in foods have to be digested into dipeptides and free amino acids before nutrients are available and protein digestion is incomplete Some percentage of food protein is wasted in the digestive tract. The trick is that if amino acids arrive in high concentrations, the liver is obligated to destroy most of them; so that high protein intake is wasteful if you want the amino acids to be utilized as protein building blocks and as neurotransmitter substrates.
You have to know that the body recycles amino acids and becomes every efficient when protein intake is low; the loss of amino acids can drop to about 2 grams per day.
You have to know that amino acid proportioning is relevant to how amino acids are admitted to cells and how they are utilized. The concept of protein quality is used to express the idea that all the 9 essential amino acids have to be present before any of them can be used to make proteins. Plants may have incomplete amino acids sets, for example, and protein deficiency symptoms can appear even when the protein intake is adequate.
On the positive side of the equation, if a completely available, precisely engineered amino acid set is available, the total daily requirement is lower the RDA values for food protein intake As a rule of thumb we recommend calculating the RDA protein requirement in Grams and supplying 30 % to 50% of that value as Alpha AAX, a blend of amino acids (available separately in Alpha AAX or combined with other nutrients in Alpha ENF, Alpha PMX, and Alpha DMX.)
When amino acids are “burned” as fuel, ammonia (NH3) is the waste product. Ammonia to the liver, converted to urea and excreted by the kidneys. One of the penalties of dietary protein excess is ammonia excess, a potential cause of body malfunction following a high protein meal. The blood measurement of urea nitrogen (BUN) shows the balance between urea production by the liver and excretion by the kidneys. The BUN rises in kidney failure and serves as a measure of ammonia or nitrogen.
Free and pure l-form amino acids are provided in Alpha AAX. All Alpha Nutrition Formulas come in powder form to be added to juices or food, but avoid cooking. AAX contains a complete set of the nine essential amino acids, complemented by 10 of the non-essential amino acids. Amino acids are the real nutrients derived from proteins by digestion of food. Amino acids do not trigger immune responses. Free amino acids are much more expensive than protein powders, and hydrolyzed proteins but freeing the immune system from protein challenge is well-worth the cost.
Some of these amino acids are not destined to be included in body proteins but will be used as neurotransmitters. Tyrosine and phenylalanine, for example, are converted to dopamine, noradrenalin and adrenalin. Tryptophan is converted into serotonin. Glycine itself is a major neurotransmitter in the spinal cord. Glutamate is another important amino acid - neurotransmitter.
Sources: amino acids are individually added to an AAX pure, l-form amino acids. The formulas are hypoallergenic and have been tolerated by people with extreme sensitivity to many if not most foods.
AAX can be used whenever increased intake of amino acids is desirable. The dose range is 10 to 50 Grams per day in divided doses. The best time to take AAX is between meals, before and after workouts and body building exercises. AAX can be used to replace dietary protein when eating is reduced or digestion is impaired. AAX can be added to Alpha ENF and or Alpha PMX to boost amino acid intake.
Even with no food protein intake, a daily intake of 25 grams of free form amino acids will be adequate for most people, most of the time. RDA protein values are crude approximations based on food protein values. AAX is a precisely engineered amino acid set and the amino acids are 100% available, so that the total daily requirement for amino acids is lower the RDA values for protein intake. As a rule of thumb, we recommend calculating the RDA protein requirement in Grams and supplying 30 to 50% of that value as the Alpha blend of amino acids .