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Lipodystrophy and WastingLipodystrophy and Wasting
          
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AMINO ACIDS SUPPLEMENT
Dec 10, 2002

Dear Cade: I am a young man hiv+ since 8 years, apart from my antiretroviral treatment which it is working well I have decided to take a liquid amino acid supplement Containing Creatine/L-Carnitine/ L-Leucine/Valine/Glutamine and others. I am working out hard, doing exercises at the Gym so I think it would be better to reinforce the diet with this. Are these stuff helpful for real to help on building the muscles? And on the other hand I was told that in order to get some benefit from this synthetic product I should take a quite big quantity of it and with the empty stomach to increase its absorption. What can you recommend about it? Thanks a lot for your information. SEBASTIAN.

Response from Ms. Fields-Gardner

While there are varying experiences, research, and opinions on amino acid and creatine supplementation it is unlikely that any will be effective without adequate attention to diet and exercise. Because diet and exercise are likely to be "macromodulators" compared to a "micromodulating" amino acid supplement when it comes to gaining weight and muscle tissue, I would emphasize diet and exercise first.

While I wouldn't necessarily anticipate interference with your other therapies, if you decide to increase your intake of the supplement you describe you should let your physician and nurse know so that they can figure in any potential for liver or kidney involvement. Taking anything on an empty stomach generally requires fasting at least a couple of hours before dosing and an hour or so after dosing. Make sure that such a plan doesn't reduce your ability to eat real food and normally function.


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