Pre-workout products come in all different types of ingredients specially designed to improve your workout intensity and duration. They are prevalent within the industry as they can help aid muscle growth because of the additional energy you acquire when taking them. But something that can occur when taking pre-workout is that you get itchy. But why does pre-workout make me itchy?
Your skin becomes itchy after taking pre-workout because of one ingredient called Beta-Alanine. Most pre-workouts include this ingredient but not all. However, if it does, the sensation is usually caused when there’s a 2g per serving or more found within each scoop.
As you can see, it’s somewhat normal to feel itchy after taking pre-workout because of the ingredient Beta-Alanine. To understand this further, the Beta-Alanine causes something called acute paraesthesia. When this occurs, you’ll start feeling a tingling, itchy, or slight burning sensation on your skin.
However, you’ll be glad to hear that this isn’t harmful, you’ll just feel itchy for a period of time. If you want to understand more about pre-workout and why it makes you feel itchy, read the below:
After reading the above, you are now knowledgeable about why pre-workout makes you feel itchy. Although it may seem unsettling for some, you’ll be glad to know that it doesn’t come with any harmful effects. But, for those that don’t like the feeling, you’re probably wondering how long this will last.
Typically, your neck, shoulders, and arms will begin to become itchy 15 minutes after taking a pre-workout that has 2g, or more of Beta-Alanine included per serving. Afterwards, the itchy sensation will last around 30 minutes, but it really depends on how your body copes with acute paraesthesia. Not everyone’s bodies are built the same, so some may experience itchiness for longer or shorter periods of time.
Most pre-workout ingredients stay active within your body for around 4 to 6 hours after consumption. However, most ingredients will peak approximately 30 to 60 minutes after digestion, such as Beta-Alaine, and caffeine. To better understand how long each common ingredient stays in your system when consumed in a pre-workout format, see the below:
As you can see, there are various ingredients included within a pre-workout that has an effect on your body. But, including all of the ingredients above, the Beta-Alanine is the only one that causes an itchy effect.
However, many people suggest that caffeine has the same effect. This isn’t proven, but it can certainly give you the shakes as it stimulates adrenaline.
It’s evident that pre-workout can improve your performance during a workout or sports game. However, being itchy must be one of the worse feelings in the world. If you’re someone who thinks this (I’m sure it’s most), then there are ways in which you can reduce the chances of this occurring.
To reduce the intensity of paraesthesia from occurring, you’ll want to supplement Beta-Alanine throughout the day. By providing your body a stable release of Beta-Alanine, you’ll notice that the effects of itchiness will gradually become less and less over time.
Alternatively, to supplement Beta-Alanine, you could also opt for another pre-workout that doesn’t include this ingredient. From this, you can try and test if other pre-workouts have the same effect on you as one which has 2g or more of Beta-Alanine.
Lastly, if you must, you could even spread your pre-workout throughout the day. For example, at the start of the day, you create your drink for your pre-workout powder. In the morning, you drink 200ml, lunchtime 200ml, and before you gym 200ml. By this, you’re decreasing the intensity of Beta-Alanine causing effects on your body.
Beta-Alanine is good for you and completely safe if you use it correctly. Failing this, you can encounter some negatives which you may need to seek professional advice from a physician. If you experience any of the below, and you believe it’s from Beta-Alanine, you should act on it imminently.
For those that don’t know, oxidative stress is where there’s an imbalance of production between the oxygen reactive species and the ability of your biological system to detoxify them. Because it’s an internal production, it can be hard to determine whether or not you’re experiencing oxidative stress.
However, here are some symptoms which you should look out for:
If you experience any of the above while taking a pre-workout drink, then you’ll want to seek a physician’s suggestion. This is because these have been links to oxidative stress and heart failure.
I’m not saying pre-workout is bad for your heart. But if taking inappropriately or through genetics, it could have damaging effects.
Hyper-Beta-Alanine is an extremely rare disease in which people’s bodies reject Beta-Alanine. The symptoms of this can be quite serious, and you should seek medical advice if you experience these after taking a scoop of pre-workout.
This rare disease, Hyper-Beta-Alanine, can cause decreased muscle tone, breathing problems, and even brain damage. Therefore, people that are aware that they have this type of condition should avoid using pre-workout that includes Beta-Alanine.
A GABA-Transaminase deficiency normally develops when someone is an infant. This deficiency is directly related to seizures like epilepsy, and taking an increased amount of beta-alanine may contribute to seizures if you have a GABA-transaminase deficiency.
Beta-Alanine is considered safe, but it can affect everybody differently depending on their consumption and genetics. However, if you experience any of the above, I suggest you seek professional help right away. The only time you should experience Beta-Alanine-related issues is when you’ve consumed an unhealthy and non-recommended amount or you have genetic problems that reject Beta-alanine.
After reading the above, you should understand why pre-workout makes you itchy, how to prevent it, and what to do if you encounter any issues. Remember, if you experience itchiness from pre-workout, try some alternatives that don’t include Beta-Alanine, as this may solve the issue.