The Hidden Role of Amino Acids:
The brain, the most important organ of our body, ultimately controls every known biochemical pathway throughout the body, including the processes of aging and beauty. The brain contains as many as 100 billion nerves or neurons. These nerve cells interconnect with each other in an overwhelming melange numbering one quadrillion, and possibly more, as per our best estimates. Through many complicated steps, the brain sends complex messages and instructions to various parts of our body. These messages are chemical in nature and are called “neurotransmitters.” Neurotransmitters “transmit” or send “neuro-signals,” or nerve impulses (hence: “neuro-transmitter”). They are chemical “switches” which actually “turn on” and “turn off” functions of the body, speed up or slow down biological processes, and govern the natural well-being of the body, all from within the brain itself.
Neurotransmitters then are actually chemicals, and they accumulate at the tip of each nerve cell. When instructed, these microscopic chemical sacs release their contents into the area between nerve cells working in a lock and key type of fashion. Enzymes (made from amino acids) in the area are also required to neutralize as well as catalyze neurotransmitter activity. The action caused by such neuro-biochemical action may ultimately give instructions for a muscle to contract, a gland to release its contents, or simply carry the message on to another nerve for further processing.
Neurotransmitters carry very specific instructions. Some promote feelings of thirst, hunger and satiety, whereas others promote those of sleepiness, alertness, anger and anxiety. Still others are known to be largely responsible for sexual interest, feelings of well-being and even euphoria. Many neurotransmitters have multiple purposes and function differently, yet specifically, when used in combination with each other. They are the chemical controlling agents of the body.
So, where do amino acids come into all of this? Well, amino acids are either “THE” neurotransmitters themselves, or are essential precursors (building blocks) to other neurotransmitters (i.e., they are an essential part of the biochemical pathways that manufacture neurotransmitters). Amino acids are indispensable. They allow our brains to both send and receive messages. Furthermore, amino acids must be present and in sufficient number throughout the entire central nervous system or messages cannot be communicated. The consequences of this cannot be overstated.
The body has no other way of communicating with itself than through neurotransmission. If the “telephone lines are down,” no one can talk to anyone else. Without an adequate supply of amino acids, nothing can be transmitted, no intracellular instruction can take place. One cell, or organ, becomes neurologically isolated from another. Messages which would normally prompt cellular rejuvenation are never sent. Consequently, cells grow old, becoming tired and worn, losing their natural healthiness.
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