What is threonine? Learn about the functions of threonine, the health benefits of this essential amino acid and where to find it, with information on the foods richest in threonine..


Unlike other essential amino acids such as tryptophan, phenylalanine or methionine, the truth is that threonine is one of those amino acids considered essential that are not as well known or popular as those named above.

Just as we must pay attention that the daily diet provides our body with adequate and recommended amounts of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fibers, amino acids are also of equal importance.

But we must differentiate the essential amino acids of non – essential amino acids, as essential are those that our body cannot produce and synthesize by itself, so we can only obtain them through diet.

What is threonine?

Threonine is an essential amino acid that works in conjunction with methionine and aspartic acid; that is, it acts in conjunction with both an essential amino acid and a non-essential amino acid.

Its main task, as we will see below, is to metabolize those fats that are deposited in certain organs, such as the liver.

Threonine functions

  • It works together with methionine and aspartic acid.
  • It metabolizes the fats that are deposited in certain organs.
  • Important for the formation of tooth enamel, collagen and elastin.
  • Helps maintain the proper amount of protein in the body.

Health benefits of threonine

As we have previously highlighted due to the different functions that threonine fulfills in the body, we are faced with an essential amino acid fundamental for the correct metabolization of fats in certain organs, especially in the liver, in addition to preventing their accumulation (a disorder that called fatty liver). This function is fulfilled jointly with two other amino acids: methionine and aspartic acid.

It is also essential in the formation of tooth enamel, elastin and collagen, and helps maintain the adequate amount of protein in the body.

Where to find threonine?

Here are the foods richest in threonine:

  • Food of animal origin: milk and other dairy products, eggs, meat and fish.
  • Plant-based foods: cereals, legumes, vegetables, fruits, seeds (highlighting pumpkin, sesame and sunflower seeds) and nuts.


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