Amino Acid Requirements, Concentrations, and Functions

Author: Sarasvati

An idea that has been floating around is that the sanguinarian condition is due to an imbalance in amino acids in the body. All well and good, and actually does have possibilities, but most in the community are not very familiar with the concept of amino acids and what they do. Amino acids serve in many functions in the body: building blocks of protein, transport signals in the nervous system, bases for making the bodies energy, and even in making hormones. I am not going to go into the chemistry of amino acids (since that in itself is a three credit course!) but just say that all amino acids can be basic (negative charge) or acidic (positive charge) and that can effect what they do in the body.

There are 28 amino acids used in various functions, of these, in a normal body, only eight are “essential”. Amino acids are divided into two general groups: essential and non-essential. Essential amino acids have to be eaten through the diet because the body has no way to make them. Non-essential amino acids can be made by the body in one way or another. There are several diseases, however, where the body is unable to manufacture one or more amino acids or has not injested sufficient amounts of a required amino acids. Depending on the amino acid, the symptoms vary… if it was an amino acid that was a part of nerve signaling, the person may experience tetnus (locking) or the muscle, or inability to move a muscle, if neurological (of the brain) the person’s thoughts may become difficult, or fall into a coma. etc. etc. Because there are so many different symptoms of an amino acid imbalance, it is possible that this could be the cause of the “symptoms” a sanguinarian experiences and why injesting blood works! Since the need for amino acids, especially the essential amino acids decreases with age, it may also explain the decrease in Thirst with age that a Sanguin experiences.

All the information below was found in The Healing Nutrients Within (Eric R. Braverman, M.D.). Included is the name of the amino acid, where it typically functions, required amounts, blood concentrations in the typical person, and symptoms of imbalance. Again, as with all other medically related things on these pages, if you think this is a possibility, your doctor alone can run the tests for the imbalances. All blood levels are for adults only and in umoles/100ml.
          ~Sarasvati

ESSENTIAL AMINO ACIDS
Have to be ingested through the diet because the body has no way to make them.

  • Cystine (sis-TEEN)
    Mostly protien formation, possibly works to break down body toxins as well.
    • Disease: Mostly rare genetic diseases.
    • Blood levels: Male: 3-9, Female: 3-9
    • Requirement: Unknown
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Duck
  • Isoleucine (eye-sew-LOU-seen)
    Similar to both Valine and Leucine
    • Disease: Muscle tremors
    • Blood levels: Male: 6-16, Female: 5-14
    • Requirement: 16 mg/kg
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Wild game
  • Leucine (LOU-seen)
    Stimulates muscle protien synthesis and insulin release
    • Disease: Pellagra psychosis
    • Blood levels: Male: 11-23, Female: 8-19
    • Requirement: 14 mg/kg
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Wild game
  • Lysine (LIE-seen)
    Possible immune effects, important in muscle production
    • Disease: Growth depression
    • Blood levels: Male: 14-34, Female: 12-31
    • Requirement: 12 mg/kg
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Pork
  • Methionine (meth-EYE-o-neen)
    Essential for protien synthesis.
    • Disease: Folate dissorders and depression.
    • Blood levels: 1-4
    • Requirement: 10 mg/kg of body weight per day (this in actually methionine and cystine)
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Sunflower seeds
  • Phenylalanine (fehn-ill-AL-ah-neen)
    Precursor for tyrosine, functions in pain suppression and brain function.
    • Disease: Phenoketoneuria
    • Blood levels: Male: 4-12, Female: 4-9
    • Requirement: 16 mg/kg of body weight per day (this in actually phenylalanine and tyrosine)
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Meat and dairy products (high protien foods)
  • Taurine (TAW-reen)
    Essential amino acid for infants. Serves in brain protection and normal functioning of heart, gallbladder, eyes, and vascular system.
    • Disease: Mostly related to malfunction of organs it serves.
    • Blood levels: Male: ?, Female: ?
    • Requirement: Unknown
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Meat and fish
  • Threonine (three-OH-neen)
    Can be converted into glycine, serine, and glucose (sugar), may play role in immunity
    • Disease: Neurological problems
    • Blood levels: Male: 9-22, Female: 8-25
    • Requirement: 8 mg/kg of body weight per day
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Meat and cheese
  • Tryptophan (tript-OH-fan)
    Brain function, seritonin activation (sleep hormone).
    • Diseases: Hartnup’s disease, Carcinoid Syndromeand Pellagra.
    • Blood levels: Male: 4-8, Female: 4-8
    • Requirement: 3 mg/kg of body weight per day (this in actually phenylalanine and tyrosine)
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Turkey, Ham, beef, salted anchovies, eggs, almonds, Parmesian and Swiss cheese
  • Valine (VAHL-een)
    Metabolized to energy with glucose
    • Disease: distinct neurological problems
    • Blood levels: Male: 16-42, Female: 14-38
    • Requirement: 12 mg/kg
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Wild game

SEMI-ESSENTIAL AMINO ACIDS
The body can synthesize some, but not enough for proper functioning.

  • Histidine (HISS-teh-deen)
    Important in anti-inflamitory (swelling) responses
    • Disease: Drug-resistant seizures, low levels can confirm of heptitis with other symptoms
    • Blood levels: Male: 6-9, Female: 3-11
    • Requirement: 20 mg/kg
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Pork

NON-ESSENTIAL AMINO ACIDS
Can be made by the body in one way or another.

  • Alanine (al-AH-neen)
    Important in DNA replication and synthesis (copying and creating)
    • Disease: Drug-resistant seizures, low levels can confirm of hepatitis with other symptoms
    • Blood levels: Male: 26-55, Female: 29-51
    • Requirement: Made from breakdown of other amino acids and DNA break-down
    • Foods with highest concentrations: fowl meat (low in livers)
  • Arginine (Are-JEH-neen)
    Is essential for birds and cats, is important for growth, estrogen production, and control of blood sugar through insulin, also important for urea production from ammonia by the kidneys
    • Disease: Neonatal Retardation
    • Blood levels: Male: 7-16, Female: 5-14
    • Requirement: Unknown
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Meat, nuts, eggs, milk and cheese
  • Asparagine (asp-PARA-jean)
    Serves to excite nerves (trigger), works in brain energy metabolism
    • Disease: Immune problems
    • Blood levels: Male: 6-11, Female: 7-10
    • Requirement: None, easily synthesized from glutamine
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Cheese and meats
  • Carnitine (carn-EH-teen)
    Important in providing energy to tissues, especially the heart
    • Disease: Drug-resistant seizures, low levels can confirm of hepatitis with other symptoms
    • Blood levels: Unknown
    • Requirement: Made from breakdown of lysine
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Animal hearts
  • Glutamine (gloot-AH-mean)
    Major part of brain signals, is part of “MSG”
    • Disease: Infant seizures
    • Blood levels: Male: 45-105, Female: 40-90
    • Requirement: None, easily made from other amino acids
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Ham and Wild Game
  • Glycine (GLIE-seen)
    Inhibitor of nerves, important to light perception of the eye, possibly important to wound healing
    • Disease: Young illness, retardation
    • Blood levels: Male: 15-41, Female: 18-45
    • Requirement: 3-5g/kg body weight, easily made from other amino acids, is the simplest amino acid
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Wheat germ, fowl meat
  • Ornithine (orn-EH-theen)
    Functions as precursor to Arginine, important for tissue growth
    • Disease: Rare, possibly insomnia due to decreased melatonin production
    • Blood levels: Male: 5-14, Female: 5-12
    • Requirement: Unknown
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Unknown
  • Proline (PRO-lean)
    Stored in collagen (stuff holding body together)
    • Disease: Hypercalcemia (high blood calcium levels), fatty stools, splenomegaly
    • Blood levels: Male: 13-40, Female: 10-36
    • Requirement: None, easily synthesized
    • Foods with highest concentrations: High amounts in processed meats (deli meats)
  • Serine (SEHR-een)
    Cell membrane function, precursor to porphyrians and hemoglobin, can be used to produce energy
    • Disease: Hypertension (high blood pressure), convulsions
    • Blood levels: Male: 10-21, Female: 10-20
    • Requirement: Easily made from other amino acids
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Pork and game
  • Tyrosine (tie-ROW-seen)
    Brain function, synthesis of signling compounds in the body, possibly some thyroid function.
    • Disease: Has been suggested an imbalance in tyrosine causes schizophrenia due to tyrosine being a precursor to dopamine, a brain hormone. Possibly also involved in Parkinson’s disease for this reason.
    • Blood levels: Male: 4-6, Female: 2-9
    • Requirement: 16 mg/kg of body weight per day (this in actually phenylalanine and tyrosine)
    • Foods with highest concentrations: Meat products (high protein foods)

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