The power of supplementing with myHMB is that it delivers exactly what the body’s working muscles need — HMB. Scientifically known as β-hydroxy β-methylbutyrate, HMB is produced naturally in our bodies during the metabolism of the essential amino acid leucine. Leucine is found in virtually all protein — we eat it every day in foods like soybeans, beef, alfalfa and fish, and some proteins have more leucine than others. However, it’s difficult if not impossible to consume enough protein with supplementation or a healthy diet alone to achieve the effective amount of HMB. With myHMB, you can get the muscle-building power of HMB directly — and that provides serious benefits.
Benefits of HMB
Athletes, aging adults, dieters, active individuals and persons recovering from illness or injury have used HMB for decades as a highly effective supplement for improving muscle health under a variety of external stressors. In fact, the beauty of HMB is that it performs best when stressors — such as strenuous exercise or injury — are introduced to the body.
MyHMB has also been clinically shown to:
- Boost protein synthesis (Wilkinson et al., 2018)
- Reduce protein breakdown (Wilkinson et al., 2018)
- Reduce muscle damage (Nissen et al., 1996)
- Improve body composition (Wilson et al., 2014)
- Improve strength gains from resistance training (Nissen and Sharp, 2003)
- Improve recovery by reducing damage associated with exercise (both resistance and endurance) (Knitter et al., 2000; Jówko et al., 2001)
- Improve endurance by increasing maximal oxygen consumption (Lamboley et al., 2007)
- Improve endurance by lengthening the time to the onset of blood lactate accumulation (Vukovich and Dreifort, 2001)
- Improve anabolic effects of plant-based protein (Rittig, et al. 2016)
Key Mechanisms of HMB
Muscle mass is the sum of muscle protein breakdown and muscle protein synthesis. HMB simultaneously decreases muscle protein breakdown and increases muscle protein synthesis. The beauty of HMB is that it performs best when stressors are introduced to the body.
HMB decreases protein breakdown by disrupting proteolysis through the ubiquitin-proteasome proteolytic pathway (a major enzymatic pathway for protein breakdown in muscle). This results in less muscle damage.
HMB stimulates muscle protein synthesis through multiple mechanisms, including the mTOR/p70S6k pathway. While the initiation of myofibrillar protein synthesis is influenced by multiple factors, mTOR is a key regulatory factor that results in a direct increase in myofibrillar protein synthesis. Myofibrillar proteins cause muscles to contract and are responsible for the strength of the muscle contraction. HMB has been shown to increase the phosphorylation of mTOR, thus activating the mTOR signaling pathway in muscle. The mTOR then stimulates the initiation of protein synthesis in the muscle.
While many of these effects are shared with leucine, HMB is more potent than leucine in promoting strength gains, and a recent study has shown that conversion of leucine to HMB is necessary for this increase in protein synthesis.
HMB vs. Protein or Leucine
In order to benefit from HMB, supplementation is needed. While it is true that HMB is produced naturally in our bodies during the metabolism of the essential amino acid leucine, only 5% of dietary leucine is converted to HMB in the body. This means that, in theory, a person would need to consume 60 grams of leucine — or approximately 600 grams of high quality protein — to get the effective amount of HMB. Directly consuming this amount of protein or leucine is a difficult if not impossible feat.
The simple solution: Daily supplementation of the effective amount of HMB, a manageable 3 grams, to maintain and improve overall muscle health.
600 grams of protein = 20 servings or scoops
60 grams of leucine = more than 3 tablespoons
3 grams of HMB = 3 - 1 gram capsules
In the case of HMB, the study of safety is almost as astounding as the discovery of the benefits. Numerous studies with HMB have included extensive measurements of safety data.
One study published in the Journal of Nutrition summarized extensive health questionnaires, blood analyses, and emotional profiles from participants in nine different clinical studies. The findings showed that HMB consumption is safe with no untoward effects in males and females, both young and old.
In addition, an extensive toxicity study using dosages more than tenfold the recommended dosage in humans showed no significant clinical findings, indicating no harmful effects of HMB supplementation.
HMB separates itself from other supplements with a growing body of research. Findings not only show that HMB works to improve the results of an exercise program, but they also show that it is safe, with no known side effects. In fact, the study of HMB safety has been just as extensive as the study of the effects of HMB on improving strength and performance. In the last two decades, over 50 human studies, 40 review articles, and four meta-analyses have been published as peer-reviewed papers, the scientific gold standard.
Frequently Asked Questions
HMB stands for β-hydroxy β-methylbutyrate, which is naturally produced in our bodies during the metabolism of the essential amino acid leucine. Leucine is a part of the food chain – we consume it every day in foods like soybeans, beef, alfalfa, and fish. Some proteins have more leucine than others, however it is difficult if not impossible to consume enough protein through supplementation or a healthy diet alone to achieve the effective amount of HMB your body needs.
HMB is important for our aging muscles. As we age, it is inevitable that we will experience muscle loss. Supplementing with HMB can help prevent or slow the process of muscle loss to improve overall health, strength, and mobility.
HMB aids in increasing muscle protein in the body through two dual mechanisms:
Decreasing Muscle Protein Breakdown
HMB decreases protein breakdown by disrupting proteolysis through the ubiquitin-proteasome proteolytic pathway (a major enzymatic pathway for protein breakdown in muscle). This process helps to blunt muscle damage and recover faster.
Increasing Muscle Protein Synthesis
HMB stimulates muscle protein synthesis through multiple mechanisms, including the mTOR pathway. While the initiation of myofibrillar protein synthesis is influenced by multiple factors, mTOR is a key regulatory factor that results in a direct increase in myofibrillar protein synthesis.
Myofibrillar proteins make up the contractile apparatus in muscles. HMB helps maintain this by increasing the phosphorylation of mTOR, thus activating the mTOR signaling pathway in muscle which stimulates the initiation of protein synthesis in the muscle. And HMB also works on decreasing myofibrillar protein degradation.
While many of these effects are shared with the essential amino acid leucine, HMB is more potent than leucine in promoting strength gains, and a study has shown that conversion of leucine to HMB is necessary for this increase in protein synthesis.
Yes, HMB does improve muscle mass through its unique dual-action of increasing protein synthesis and decreasing protein breakdown. These mechanisms blunt muscle damage allowing you to recover faster and build muscle.
Studies show that measurable increases in strength and prevention for overtraining occur in only a couple of weeks; however, it will most likely take three or four weeks to produce results that will also be noticed by friends and coworkers depending upon the level of training and overall training status.
Recognized experts at major universities have been conducting HMB research on animals and humans for three decades. In these studies, HMB was found to have several beneficial effects, including producing better results faster from intense exercise. The list of HMB clinical studies is continually growing. Currently, there are about 50 human clinical studies traceable to TSI’s myHMB®, and myHMB® has been discussed in about 100 review articles, and 10 meta-analyses, which have been published as peer-reviewed papers, and there are still more ongoing studies with HMB!
While HMB is vital to muscle health it has also been shown that Vitamin D3 is also an essential nutrient to help muscles reach their full potential. When HMB and Vitamin D3 are combined it optimizes the effectiveness of HMB.
A year-long, double-blind study conducted by the researchers at Iowa State University and Des Moines University funded by NIH also found HMB and Vitamin D3 improved muscle function in older adults, even without exercise.
HMB boosts muscle health in older adults by both stimulating protein synthesis and reducing muscle breakdown. Higher Vitamin D3 levels are associated with greater strength and superior muscle function, especially in older adults. The study indicated that the proper ratio of HMB and Vitamin D3 can boost effects, helping improve muscle function in an entire generation of people.
Yes, there are other supplements that have shown to have healthy benefits when taken in conjunction with HMB.
Research has shown that the nutrient, Vitamin D3, is essential for helping muscles reach their full potential. When HMB is combined with Vitamin D3 it optimizes the effectiveness of HMB. Learn more.
HMB combined with PEAK ATP® has also shown a synergistic benefit on performance gains – meaning that when combined the benefits are greater than with either supplement alone. Learn more.
HMB combined with creatine has been shown to have an additive effect on performance, more than either supplement on their own.
It is also suggested that HMB be taken in combination with a balanced diet that contains a daily protein intake of about one gram per pound of body weight, especially if you are actively exercising. If your diet isn’t balanced or your protein intake is low, then HMB should be combined with the appropriate vitamin, mineral, protein, or energy supplement to balance your diet.
Yes, HMB has had extensive clinical studies conducted to specifically evaluate the safety of HMB, and no negative side effects have been recorded in either men or women whether young or elderly.
A summary of the effects of HMB on hematology, emotional profile, and adverse effects as measured in nine clinical studies showed only positive effects on cholesterol (7 percent decrease) and blood pressure (4.4 mm of Hg decrease).
In clinical studies, HMB users have consistently improved strength, reduced muscle damage, and have also improved body composition with exercise when compared with placebo test subjects. Research suggests that HMB supplementation also provides benefits to runners, cyclists, and other endurance-training individuals.
Newer research has also shown that the combination of HMB and Vitamin D3 improved muscle function in older adults, even without exercise.
Research indicates that HMB supplementation can benefit virtually everyone. Athletes, aging adults, dieters, active individuals, or those recovering from illness or injury have used HMB for decades as a highly effective supplement for improving muscle health under a variety of external stressors. In fact, the beauty of HMB is that it performs best when stressors – such as strenuous exercise or injury – are introduced to the body.
Yes, myHMB® is acceptable for sports use and does not contain any banned substances in accordance with WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency).
Pregnant or lactating women are advised against taking HMB because safety studies have not yet been conducted for these populations. Also, individuals with any known medical problems and adolescents should consult with their physicians prior to using HMB, as they should with all dietary supplements.