You’re about to discover why a precise ratio of amino acids is far better than protein for lean muscle growth, recovery and energy—and how they have helped my performance more than any nutritional supplement I’ve taken over the years.
My name is Ben Greenfield.
I’m a New York Times best-selling author, former Ironman Triathlete and professional Spartan Racer.
I’ve been voted NSCA’s Personal Trainer of the year, my site and podcast receive over 1 million views per month, and I’ve been featured in Men’s Health and other top publications. In fact, you may have caught a glimpse of my mug on the October cover of Outside Magazine.
I say all this not to brag... but to highlight my extensive fitness experience — and to give you background for my experience with amino acids.
See, back when I was doing Ironman triathlons, my body began to break down.
Those long fasted bike rides and runs were catabolizing muscle rapidly. I was growing weak.
So I did what most athletes would do in this situation...I tried upping my protein intake.
The problem was, if I over-consumed protein—especially before a race—my performance would plummet because I’d feel sluggish and tired.
If I overate protein after a race, I would have significant digestive distress because my body just couldn’t break down all that protein.
I desperately needed a solution.
I searched far and wide for a solution, experimenting with nearly every nutritional supplement under the sun and talking with experts ranging from sports physicians to performance coaches to a 42-time Ironman triathlete.
But it wasn't until I found a little-known supplement called Essential Amino Acids that everything changed...
Essential amino acids (EAAs), as the name implies, are essential because they can't directly be made by your body like all the other amino acids can. Instead, you have to get EAAs from your diet or from a supplement.
These eight essential amino acids are phenylalanine, valine, threonine, tryptophan, isoleucine, methionine, leucine and lysine.
Why are EAAs so important?
Since these eight amino acids make up over 50% of every protein in the body, if any of them are depleted, it directly impacts muscle-building, performance and recovery.
After I learned how critical these essential amino acids were, I began taking 10 to 20 tablets of EAAs per day either before, during or after a workout to keep muscle catabolism from occurring.
I found that these EAAs also allowed me to maintain performance and energy, while cutting off appetite cravings, even in a fasted state.
In fact, this protocol turned out to be so darn effective — I still do it to this day. And I’ve helped thousands of others avoid muscle loss, improve body composition and boost performance with the same strategy.
Protein is indeed the workhorse of your cells.
Virtually every function in your body depends on protein, whether it’s your digestive enzymes, tendons, repairing or building bone density, producing critical neurotransmitters...you name it: these are all made of protein.
In fact, there are about 50,000 proteins in the body, paired or made new every day.
And the thing is, every protein is made up out of amino acids.
So if you lack essential amino acids, then you won’t have the building blocks you need and everything in your body suffers. It’s that plain and simple.
Protein drives your body forward—you can think of it as your car. If protein is your car, you can think of amino acids as the parts: the steering wheel, the tires, the engine, you get the point.
If you only have SOME of the parts and lack others, your body won’t have all that it needs to run smoothly and perform critical functions.
Just imagine trying to drive a car with only three tires, a steering wheel and maybe a dashboard.
You won’t get very far.
If your body were to try to run without amino acids, you would either experience the break down of muscle tissue, suffer from poor recovery, repair or heal more slowly, have lowered energy or a decreased mood.
The negative effects are endless.
But when you DO have all the amino acids you need, everything works as smoothly as it should.
You recover faster and better, you build lean muscle more efficiently (and KEEP it), your brain performs at a higher level, your appetite cravings subside... everything is more optimized.
If you've followed me for any length of time, you already know that overeating protein comes with a host of problems.
For one, it can kick you OUT of ketosis and inhibit fat-burning.
(More on ketosis and amino acids in just a moment.)
Worse though, is the fact that most protein is NOT efficiently digested.
Your body only converts a fraction of the protein you consume into actual amino acids.
The rest must be eliminated as waste, which can pose problems for your kidneys and intestinal tract.
In fact, I was shocked by how inefficient most protein sources really are...
This may shock you, but testing reveals just how little of the protein we eat actually gets absorbed.
As you can see from the chart, whey and soy are about 16% utilized. Beef, lamb and fish are about 32-33% utilized, so they’re about twice as good as most vegetarian proteins.
Whole eggs (including the yolk) are the highest, at around 48% utilization.
Breast milk is the only thing that’s better. It’s about 49% utilized.
And the formulation of amino acids that I’ve personally been consuming for years? It is 99% utilized.
So when you take this formula of eight amino acids, virtually every single gram is utilized.
Plus, there are basically no calories or waste from these amino acids, when compared to protein.
Best of all, these aminos still get made into protein by your body.
So that's why amino acids work so well: they’re precisely what your body needs to manufacture protein.
“Really incredible stuff! I love to climb or trail run fasted in the morning and Kion Aminos takes you to that Superman level. Highly recommend.”
None of this is “theory.” A long list of studies has backed up the many benefits of essential amino acids.
For example, you see significant muscle-preserving effects from essential amino acid supplements when ingested, especially during training in a fasted or ketotic state. This includes decreased indicators of muscle damage and maintenance of a healthy inflammatory response. 
This basically means that if you took some essential amino acids, and consumed nothing else, you wouldn’t “cannibalize” as much lean muscle during a fasted workout session.
The same goes for working out after or during a long intermittent fast, a bout of ketosis, a marathon, Ironman triathlon or any other long event.
Another study showed that consuming an essential amino acid mix after resistance training increased muscle protein synthesis and net muscle protein balance, indicating that ingesting essential amino acids (let’s just call them “EAAs” from here on out!) post-workout may stimulate faster muscle repair, recovery and growth. 
And yet another study showed the potential for EAAs to cause muscle growth and regeneration because they are a potent rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) activator (activating cell growth), causing muscle satellite cell proliferation. This gives them similar muscle building potential to a big ol' steak WITHOUT the huge number of calories, preparation time or digestive strain. 
As you age, your muscle produces less or has a delayed ability to proliferate satellite cells in response to exercise, which is bad news, since satellite cells are essential for skeletal muscle regeneration.
But individuals who consumed EAAs after resistance exercise had greater satellite cell proliferative capacity than those who didn’t supplement. 
This is especially important information if you're at all interested in anti-aging since muscle mass and resistance training keep you young.
Powerful, right? So you might be wondering...
Branched-chain amino acids - or BCAAs - is a term that refers to just three amino acids: leucine, isoleucine and valine.
Sure, these are very popular among athletes and bodybuilders, with their “special” 2:1:1 ratio that claims to enhance the absorption and utilization of amino acids.
But there’s one BIG problem: with only three amino acids, you do not build protein. You simply can’t, because - as you now know - you need eight amino acids for this.
So branched-chain amino acids get used for fuel because they get turned into carbohydrates. That’s bad news if you’re concerned about your metabolic health, and it also means that pesky BCAAs could interfere with your fat loss and body composition goals.
EAAs, on the other hand, still have the three main components of branched-chain amino acids (the BCAAs leucine, isoleucine and valine), AND the rest of the amino acids.
This means that EAAs, unlike BCAAs, have a natural anabolic effect AND don’t spike your blood sugar: which is critical not only to muscle building, but also to recovery. This means if you take essential amino acids right before or during a workout, the repair of muscle starts immediately.
“So far, so GREAT! I've been experimenting with intermittent fasting and have taken this a couple of times pre-workout on days when I've lifted heavy. I felt INCREDIBLE!”
A moment ago I mentioned ketosis — which is a state where your body switches to fat-burning (utilizing ketones) for fuel.
The problem is, many who experiment with ketosis, or carbohydrate restriction, experience catabolism or muscle loss.
There are two reasons for this: 1) because of inadequate levels of amino acids and 2) because they tend to restrict protein as a strategy for “not spiking blood glucose,” so they don’t get thrown out of ketosis.
But sticking to a low-carb or ketogenic diet (or if you’re trying to fast) can be MUCH easier when EAAs are present.
For starters, EAAs won’t break your state of ketosis, (unlike major food sources of protein, like steak and eggs). EAAs also allow you to maintain or build muscle — something you simply can't do with BCAAs alone. Plus there’s only 4 calories in a 10-tablet serving of EAAs.
Again, EAAs, in the right forms and ratios, are 99% utilized—they won’t turn into sugar and inhibit fat-burning.
I personally consumed a handful of EAAs quite frequently during the 12 months that I followed a strict 90% fat-based ketosis diet, and they were one of my primary sources of protein throughout the day for energy and performance.
I monitored my ketone levels and found that this strategy significantly helped my ability to remain in ketosis and perform at a very high level.
Over the years, I worked hard to source and optimize my essential amino acid formula to perfectly suit my needs... and the needs of any athlete, biohacker or individual wanting to maximize their performance without poorly affecting their health or longevity.
I call them “Kion Aminos”... and Kion Aminos are ALL eight essential amino acids, in precisely the right ratio, with 99% utilization and full protein absorption in just 20 minutes.
Kion Aminos are NOT animal derived and contain no animal byproducts whatsoever. They are vegetarian and vegan-friendly, gluten-free and completely pure and unadulterated.
Using them is simple: all you do is take 5-10 tablets with water or a beverage and in 20 minutes there will be a beneficial boost of amino acids in your blood.
Independent research on these amino acids proves their ability to: help quell your appetite , hit your workouts harder, get better sleep , build or maintain muscle , and much more (remember: amino acids are required for just about every metabolic function that exists*).
No other form of protein comes close! Kion Aminos contains eight essential amino acids, perfect for omnivores, Paleo dieters, vegans, vegetarians, and those in ketosis, including:
With each amino acid performing a variety of functions within your body, you want to ensure you have enough of them at the ready, and in the proper ratios, right when you need them.
Kion Aminos provides EAAs in a convenient tablet — you don’t need to prepare a giant steak, carry a huge canister of protein powder or a container of hard boiled eggs in your gym bag, or worry about any other inconvenient and messy option.
Each Kion Aminos tablet contains one gram of EAAs with NO binders, fillers, stearates, coating or dye: just eight essential amino acids formulated in the perfect ratio for your body's absorption and utilization.
1 tablet, 1 gram of protein, and that’s it.
It’s that simple (and again, unlike the large number of calories in food sources of protein, there is only 0.4 of a calorie per tablet).
As a dietary supplement, I recommend that you take a minimum of five grams (five tablets) of Kion Aminos daily.
As an exercise aid, take five to ten grams twenty minutes before physical activity and repeat every one to two hours of exercise (I coach some athletes who get extreme recovery benefits from taking ten to twenty grams pre-workout, and then another ten to twenty grams post-workout!).
For maximum absorption, take your aminos separately from other sources of dietary protein and fat.
With so many benefits, such convenience, and the fact that these amino acids are essential to your body, Kion Aminos are a superb addition to just about any diet.
“Kion Aminos not only give you more energy while working out (especially during fasted workouts), they also are a great recovery booster. I used this product while training for the Boston marathon and could feel it help with endurance, strength, and recovery."
While Kion Aminos are NOT a replacement for all the protein in your diet (after all, I’ve got nothing against a grilled steak, a mess of scrambled eggs or a handful of almonds)...
...they are an addition that can deliver a multitude of benefits—from increased muscle building to better sleep to a satiated appetite to faster recovery—while saving you considerably on food and supplement costs, time and mess.
Think about it like this: whether it’s shakes, bars, steaks or any other protein source... you’re digesting anywhere from 16-49% of this precious protein AT MOST.
The rest is turned into nitrogen waste that must be processed by your body.
If you’re pushing hard in the gym, OR you want faster recovery in some area... rather than adding more and more protein to your diet, doesn’t it make sense to consume amino acids instead?
This is like bypassing the middleman—digestion—and giving your muscles, blood and entire body the amino acids it ultimately needs to thrive.
Kion Aminos have allowed me to reduce my overall protein consumption while improving health, performance and my entire anti-aging protocol.
I want the same for you.
No matter what diet you’re currently on...
No matter how hard you train or what your goals are...
...chances are you can benefit from more bioavailable amino acids for your entire body.
You’ve seen all the reasons why consuming more protein isn’t the answer and why Kion Aminos give you all the benefits of protein with none of the downsides.
Now, the choice is yours.
To me, essential amino acids are one of the best values, one of the simplest strategies and one of the most transformative supplements any human being can take.
This is why I worked for years to bring the purest, most potent formula to you...at the best possible price.
Save and get started with Kion Aminos using any button on this page.
Your muscles, bones, joints, brain... indeed every cell in your body... will thank you for it.
P.S.—I don't sell anything that I haven't personally tested, used extensively, and CURRENTLY USE. Kion Aminos was the first product that I launched with my new company, Kion, because it's one of THE most foundational supplements any human can take.
To date, there are thousands of studies on the benefits of various amino acids and all they do in the body. And now you can get all eight essential amino acids in one easy-to-take formula, that’s 99% absorbed by your body.