Arginine is a semi-essential amino acid. It is a building block of protein and a known precursor of the gas nitric oxide that performs a myriad of physiological functions.
Arginine is found in high concentrations in nuts and seeds like peanuts and almonds, and can also be found in chocolate and raisins.
Dietary fiber is important because it keeps the digestive system functioning properly, enhancing our body’s ability to use other dietary nutrients.
Fiber goes through our gastrointestinal tract almost completely undigested.
Arginine is necessary for the execution of many physiological processes, like hormone secretion, an increase in growth hormone output, the removal of toxic waste products from the body, and immune system defenses.
Arginine, is a precursor of nitric oxide, which is responsible for vasodilation, is often used for treating conditions such as chest cramping (angina), high blood pressure, heart disease, and sexual dysfunction, ED.
Arginine is also used in the treatment of male and female infertility.
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Who Needs It?
Everyone in the population needs arginine, especially, growing children, infants, athletes, the obese or overweight, and the elderly.
In adult populations, Arginine is considered to be a non-essential amino acid, but for children, Arginine is considered essential to the defense and development of the adolescent immune system.
L-arginine is used by bodybuilders as a pre-workout supplement to enhance energy, strength, and aid muscle building.
Taking L-arginine for bodybuilding and weightlifting can help the growth of muscles by promoting the release of growth hormones.
L-arginine is also used to assist fat metabolism, working to produce lean well-toned muscles.
Persons suffering from an injury can benefit from supplemental arginine since the body’s demand for arginine is increased during times of bodily injury and repair.
Persons suffering from erectile dysfunction or sexual dysfunction may also benefit from the use of Arginine due to its vasodilation properties.
In cases of erectile dysfunction or poor circulation, Arginine will act to increase the diameter of blood vessels, thereby allowing increased blood flow to reach limited areas.
L-Arginine offers benefits to hard-training athletes, and supplementing with Arginine may boost the immune system, thereby allowing the athlete to train harder and avoid the detrimental effects of minor disorders associated with overtraining.
L-arginine aids muscle growth because it is needed for the synthesis of most proteins, and when the muscle mass increases, L-arginine also signals muscle cells, encouraging the release of growth hormone and promoting fat metabolism.
Furthermore, by reducing the fat stores underneath the skin and promoting muscle growth, L-arginine can increase one’s fitness and strength, resulting in a well-toned, lean muscle mass sought by bodybuilders.
Boosting the Immune System
L-arginine helps maintain overall health by mopping up free radicals and increases the effectiveness of the cells of the immune system, thus, boosting the immune system.
Since physical activities and bodybuilding takes you through repeated physical stress and increases the chances of infections and muscle damage, it is important to ensure that the immune system is always boosted.
Finally, due to L-Arginine’s ability to increase growth hormone levels, and its ability to encourage lipid oxidization, coupled with its ability to lower blood pressure, and decrease arterial plaque, supplemental L-arginine may also prove beneficial for obese persons.
Dosage of L-Arginine Supplements for Bodybuilding
The recommended dosage as a pre-workout supplement on an empty stomach is 3-5 g of L-arginine.
It helps with a quicker restoration of muscles, injured during a tough exercise, and also accelerates muscle development.
Some bodybuilders choose to use it as a post-workout supplement. Taking it at bedtime helps growth hormone production while sleeping.
L-arginine should not be used long-term, and it is suggested that you use it for two months on and two months off.
L-Arginine Side Effects
L-arginine is not recommended in patients following an acute heart attack, and it is advised that you use it with caution if pregnant or breastfeeding.
It may interact with insulin and cholesterol-lowering agents and may increase the effects of nitric oxide donors.
It should not be taken with Viagra, and it may even make herpes virus conditions and Asthma symptoms worse.
This supplement may also lower blood pressure and cause nausea and diarrhea, and should be avoided for people with kidney and or liver impairments.
The High concentrations of nitric oxide, which L-arginine helps create in the body can be toxic to the brain tissue, over an extended period of time.
L-arginine may also increase the risk of metabolic acidosis in people with electrolyte imbalances, and should be avoided by people with a Guanidinoacetate methyltransferase deficiency
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