What is HMB?

HMB is a metabolic product of Leucine (one of the building blocks for proteins and also part of the BCAAs) and stands for beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate, hydroxymethyl-butyric acid. It plays an anti-catabolic role for muscle, but is not as effective for initiating muscle protein biosynthesis as the actual Amino acids. Approximately 5% of leucine is converted to HMB.

That HMB has a part in the implementation of protein synthesis was discovered by a certain Steven L. Nisse in at Iowa State University in the USA. Since the beginning of the 21st century, it has been marketed as a dietary supplement.

HMB use

HMB is used to improve the success of strength training by accelerating and promoting muscle growth, but at the same time it also Regeneration is carried out faster by taking it. In addition, HMB is also said to help in the treatment of diseases that affect the heart and blood veins, as well as high cholesterol and high blood pressure. In combination with Arginine or glutamine, HMB is also still used to counteract weight loss and weakness in AIDS patients.

Sum formula C5H10O3
State of aggregation fixed
Melting point -80 °C
Boiling point 88 °C
Solubility Miscible with water

Side effects

HMB is apparently not serious side effects, but there are no long-term studies on this so far. Until now, it is only assumed that the intake of HMB would support the development of acne.

HMB in natural foods

Since HMB is a metabolite of leucine, leucine-rich foods are also correspondingly rich in HMB. These foods include the following:

  • Avocado
  • Cauliflower
  • Grapefruit

Taking HMB

The intake of HMB should be at about 1-3 grams daily if the goal is to reduce muscle loss. In terms of muscle protein biosynthesis, HMB and leucine if the latter would not be slightly more effective when taking the same amount. HMB should not be the best supplement for stimulating muscle protein biosynthesis, as leucine is not only more effective, but also cheaper.

If you take HMB before a workout, you should do it 30-15 minutes before the workout.

When taking it, you should also pay attention to the package insert and complete the prescribed intake, because each HMB supplement has a different strength.


A supplement that can certainly help and support the human body, however, there are not yet more accurate and longer conducted studies that can directly evaluate the effect of the supplement