Amino acid therapy as a supplemental aid to a healthy diet joined the fitness craze in the United States by the end of the 1990s. According to author Brenda Adderly in Better Nutrition, in September of 1999, "The creation of new protein from amino acids and the breaking down of existing protein into amino acids are ongoing processes in our bodies. If, for example, you are working out and developing certain muscles, amino acids come to the rescue with new protein to build muscle cells," Adderly noted. "Similarly, when you eat a complete protein, such as meat or beans and rice, the body breaks down the amino acids in that food for later use." Understanding the balance of amino acids in the body can be often the first clue to understanding why a person suffers many ailments, ranging from depression to upset stomach to obesity. Deficiencies in the proper balance of amino acids is likely to occur in those with poor diets. Because stress, age, infection, and various other factors including the amount of exercise a person does, can also affect the levels of amino acids, people with healthy, nutritious diets could also find that they also suffer deficiencies. Adderly adds that, "Not only are the symptoms of amino acid deficiencies wide ranging, but there are no RDAs (recommended daily allowances) or other guidelines, to help us tell if we are least covering all the bases. Add to that the complicated matter of keeping track of all 28 some with names most of us have never even heard and the situation begins to seem overwhelming."
Jane Spehar, Teresa G. Odle, The Gale Group Inc., Gale, Detroit,