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β-alanine is a popular supplement among athletes with 61% of competitive team sport players recently surveyed reporting β-alanine use.1 Despite its popularity, there is limited evidence on the most effective supplementation strategy and the systematic review and meta-analysis published by Sauders B et al2 has shed some light on this issue. Athletes' understanding of β-alanine potential benefits and appropriate daily dose and duration of consumption is low,1 potentially compromising the impact of β-alanine supplementation in a real world setting. This editorial aims to highlight issues regarding the efficacy of β-alanine supplementation and suggest possible approaches to improve its effectiveness in the field.
What we know
The mechanism of ergogenic effect of β-alanine as the precursor to carnosine synthesis is associated with an expansion of its key physiological role as a proton buffer with potential for antioxidant, glycation and calcium regulation influence.3 Increases in carnosine muscle levels depend on the β-alanine load provided.4 β-alanine supplementation of 4–6 g/day for …
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