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β-Hydroxy β-methylbutyric acid (HMB), also known as β-hydroxy β-methylbutyrate, is a naturally produced substance in humans that is used as a dietary supplement and as an ingredient in certain medical foods that are intended to promote wound healing and provide nutritional support for people with muscle wasting due to cancer or HIV/AIDS. In healthy adults, supplementation with HMB has been shown to increase exercise-induced gains in muscle size, muscle strength, and lean body mass, reduce skeletal muscle damage from exercise, improve aerobic exercise performance, and expedite recovery from exercise. Medical reviews and meta-analyses indicate that HMB supplementation also helps to preserve or increase lean body mass and muscle strength in individuals experiencing age-related muscle loss. HMB produces these effects in part by stimulating the production of proteins and inhibiting the breakdown of proteins in muscle tissue. No adverse effects from long-term use as a dietary supplement in adults have been found.
HMB is a metabolite of L-leucine and is produced in the body through oxidation of the ketoacid of L-leucine (α-ketoisocaproic acid). Since only a small fraction of L-leucine is metabolized into HMB, pharmacologically active concentrations of the compound in blood plasma and muscle can only be achieved by supplementing HMB directly. A healthy adult produces approximately 0.3 grams of HMB per day, while supplemental HMB is usually taken in doses of 3–6 grams per day. HMB is sold as a dietary supplement at a cost of about US$30–50 per month when taking 3 grams per day. HMB is also contained in several nutritional products, including certain formulations of Ensure, Juven, and Myoplex. HMB is also present in insignificant quantities in certain foods, such as alfalfa, asparagus, avocados, cauliflower, grapefruit, and catfish.
The effects of HMB on human skeletal muscle were first discovered by Steven L. Nissen at Iowa State University in the mid-1990s. As of 2018, HMB has not been banned by the National Collegiate Athletic Association, World Anti-Doping Agency, or any other prominent national or international athletic organization. In 2006, only about 2% of college student athletes in the United States used HMB as a dietary supplement. As of 2017, HMB has found widespread use as an ergogenic supplement among young athletes.

Source: Wikipedia

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