Does D Aspartic Acid Work For Muscle Building?

What Is D Aspartic Acid

Aspartic acid, which was named after asparagus, can be naturally synthesized by the body and is used as a building block for proteins. Aspartic acid is one of the dispensable amino acids that the human body can produce on its own, unlike the nine essential amino acids that must be obtained from food. It is commonly found in various proteins and protein-rich foods such as soy, peanuts, eggs, and fish. The synthetic form of aspartic acid, D-aspartic acid, is not commonly found in proteins. The name "aspartic acid" is derived from the Latin word for asparagus, as it was first extracted from this plant. As the body can produce aspartic acid, there is generally no need to worry about a deficiency.

What Does D Aspartic Acid Do?

The Times DAA Works

The most realistic claims around it's ability to help increase muscle growth, [1] with several studies showing it improved body composition, it was particularly effective in trained men and athletes with a trial of 3 months supplementing DAA, the participants in the none placebo group displayed elevated strenth gains and hypertrophy (muscle size increase). Although both the controll group and the DAA group showed no difference in testosterone. [2] 

However, in studie of untrained men DAA has shown to be effective with 87% of men in a 12 week study showing increased T levels [3]. Which is perhaps one of the most interesting things about DAA as a muscle growth supplement. 

That it could potentially be beneficial for trained and untrained men through different mechanisms. Although more trials would be needed before any significant claims could be made.

The Times DAA Doesn't Work

Some advertisements claim that aspartic acid helps in building muscle and improving performance, and it can increase testosterone levels in men and enhance potency. However, there is little scientific evidence to support any claims around libido.

While DAA is considered a safe ingredient in some of the best testosterone boosters on the market, its standalone ability to raise testosterone levels could be rather low in trained men.

Do I Need DAA?

It is generally not necessary to take additional food supplements if a balanced diet is followed. However, as DAA can be purchased comparatively cheaply, it might indeed be worth a try. Generally, athletes who consume protein-rich foods already get enough aspartic acid, along with other amino acids, that said it could be more beneficial for athletes on restricted diets [4]. 

The amino acid is also marketed as DAA or D-Aspartic Acid, which has gained popularity in the bodybuilding and weight training community, which is where the arguement over optimisation comes in. A lot of men are happy to add a supplement to their diet for a 1 or 2 percent performance increase.

When it comes to science… well, the debate on DAA’s effectiveness is still heated. Scientific studies have produced conflicting results regarding the effects of aspartic acid on humans. Manufacturers are not allowed to advertise aspartic acid with health claims, but they can apply for the approval of such claims with EU regulatory bodies. If a manufacturer adds zinc and pantothenic acid to the product, there are already approved health claims that match the advertising promises. However, the scientifically proven effects of protein on muscle growth and maintenance cannot be extrapolated to individual amino acids such as aspartic acid. [5] [6]

Summary: DAA’s effects on testosterone and muscle building in a nutshell

DAA is a type of amino acid commonly used as a sports supplement with the belief that it could improve muscle growth and strength. Though, there are limited and conflicting scientific data on its efficacy, it is generally considered reasonable to make claims that it does help with hypertrophy and stregnth. 

Some studies suggest that DAA may raise testosterone levels in the body, which might contribute to increased muscle mass and strength. [1][2]

As for testosterone increase, the jury is out, there is some argument it is beneficial for sedentary men, [3] but other research shows no significant advantages. [7] 

Further investigation is needed to conclusively determine whether DAA is beneficial for muscle building, although the evidence looks promising. Furthermore, it's important to recognize that only taking supplements won't build muscle, and a comprehensive approach including a proper diet, regular exercise, and enough rest is crucial for optimal outcomes.


1. Chen Y, Li F, Ma W, et al. Effect of aspartic acid on performance and body composition in athletes: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2020;17(1):35. doi:10.1186/s12970-020-00360-2.

2. Geoffrey W. Melville ,Jason C. Siegler,Paul W. M. Marshall The effects of d-aspartic acid supplementation in resistance-trained men over a three month training period: A randomised controlled trial


4. Topo E, Soricelli A, D'Aniello A, Ronsini S, D'Aniello G. The role and molecular mechanism of D-aspartic acid in the release and synthesis of LH and testosterone in humans and rats. Reprod Biol Endocrinol. 2009;7:120. doi:10.1186/1477-7827-7-120.

5. Geyer H, Parr MK, Mareck U, et al. Analysis of non-hormonal nutritional supplements for anabolic-androgenic steroids - results of an international study. Int J Sports Med. 2004;25(2):124-129. doi:10.1055/s-2004-815654.

6. Collier SR, Casey DP, Kanaley JA. Growth hormone responses to varying doses of oral arginine. Growth Horm IGF Res. 2005;15(2):136-139. doi:10.1016/j.ghir.2004.11.003.

7. Groeneveld GJ, Beijer C, Veldman H, Meinders AE. Arginine stimulation of the immune response in healthy volunteers: dose-response relationship and safety. Clin Nutr. 2004;23(2):259-266. doi:10.1016/S0261-5614(03)00122-3.

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