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- Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is a molecule that stores energy that the body needs. The breakdown of ATP releases the stored energy
- This comes in handy for heart health and overall health
- If you exercise regularly, especially weight training, taking ATP supplements is a good idea to restore cellular ATP levels
Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is a molecule that stores the energy that the body needs for a wide variety of functions. All the physiological mechanisms that need energy get it from ATP stored in cells. The breakdown of ATP releases energy which is then used as fuel for all our bodily functions. ATP is needed for the heart to beat, it is needed for muscular effort, in fact everything we do requires ATP as energy. The body cannot function without it. That is why ATP is known as the “energy currency” of each cell in your body and your body must be supplied with energy continuously if it is to function. The harder the body works, for example during exercise, or during recovery from illness or injury, the greater then requirement is for additional energy, and potentially additional ATP.
At rest, the body is able to produce all the ATP it needs to maintain a healthy existence. However, when energy is expended at a high rate, for example during strenuous exercise, the body may not be able to replace ATP fast enough. In order to achieve maximum athletic performance, as well as for overall health, it is important to keep ATP at the optimum level. ATP is critical for heart health as well as the health of all the other musculature in the body that lets us function.
ATP is also crucial to recovery. After a hard work out in the gym, or a long run, ATP may be depleted, and if levels are not restored, it will be likely to affect your performance when you next come to train. ATP not only keeps your heart beating, it also keeps oxygen circulating around your body which is vital for muscles to operate and for them to recover and develop. If ATP levels continue to be depleted, you may face a deficiency.
The amount of ATP supplementation that is required will depend on the level of activity that you undertake. If you do not exercise regularly, your body may get enough rest to maintain optimum levels of ATP in your cells. However, if you take regular exercise, especially if you train to the point of exhaustion, you may have difficulty in maintaining and restoring ATP levels. For example, even a full day’s rest following a session of weight training might not be sufficient to restore cellular ATP levels.
ATP supplementation can therefore be particularly effective for people who carry out intense training, for example, power lifting, weight lifting or sports that involve sprinting such as soccer, basketball, volleyball and tennis.
In order to maintain cellular ATP levels at the optimum level, an ATP supplement can be taken every day. ATP supplements include creatine and ribose. A dose of 3 to 5 gm per day should be sufficient to keep ATP at a normal level. Competitive athletes or those who are concerned about their cardiovascular health may require a larger dose. In those circumstances, a dose of 5 to 10 gm per day may be appropriate.
The safest course is to consult with your doctor. In order to gauge your requirement for ATP supplementation, begin with a low dose and increase it as necessary.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
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