BCAA stands for branched-chain amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins, and branched-chain amino acids are a specific group of three essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine, and valine. These amino acids are called "branched-chain" because of their molecular structure, which includes a branched side chain. BCAAs are important for muscle protein synthesis and can be found in high-protein foods such as meat, dairy, and legumes, as well as in dietary supplements marketed to athletes and bodybuilders.
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