This is a great recuperator if you perform high intensity workouts. I work all day so I also use it to get a boost for the workouts which is quite useful if you spend a lot of energy throughout the day.
I personally prefer the capsules rather than the powder when it comes to supplementation, so I am glad that this product is also available in this format. I take it with bcaas for my pre-workout and I can truly feel that boost of energy.
Arginine is one of the most important amino acids for the human body. It is obtained in tiny amounts from the food we eat.
It is indispensable for the heart and blood vessels because it guarantees a healthy blood pressure, it improves the erection and production of sperm, and it increases the formation of the muscles and physical agility.
Unfortunately, the requirements of the organism for this amino acid are not completely met.
Moreover, there are specific situations when we need to increase the intake of arginine, for example during growth phases and pregnancy, diseases, or the demands of those who practice sports.
In the last few years, many people have started to use arginine supplementation because this amino acid, as well as its derivative called nitric oxide, have an essential role in many metabolic processes
Although this amino acid can be found in many foods of vegetable and animal origin, its consumption as a supplement in powder or capsules by athletes of all disciplines has increased recently due to the fact that it helps to improve the physical performance and to promote the development of the muscle.
What is Arginine and what is it for?
Arginine or L-Arginine is a semi-essential amino acid that is produced by the body from food.
It is produced in the human body and it contributes to the detoxification of the organism through the urine.
Arginine is the only precursor form of nitric oxide.
Arginine does not only prevent the formation of clots in the blood vessels, it also acts as a vasodilator, which improves the blood flow from the brain to the muscles of the male sexual organ.
Arginine is essential for the immune system, since it is involved in the release of the growth hormone, norepinephrine, and insulin.
It also helps with the development of muscle mass and tissue.
Its deficiency occurs mainly in those cases of high-performance sports, stress, smoking, growth phases, or injuries.
Its main natural sources are: nuts, legumes, meat, fish, eggs, and dairy products.
The effects of Arginine
The body cannot produce nitric oxide without arginine, which is a vital messenger for the execution of many functions of the organism.
Among these essential tasks the following stand out: vasodilation, the reduction of lumps in the platelets, and nerve cell transmission in the brain.
Moreover, this amino acid is important for the immune system, since it stimulates the production of white cells in the blood and it encourages the release of the growth hormone, insulin, and norepinephrine.
In addition, it stimulates the synthesis of collagen and promotes a quick healing of wounds. It plays an essential role in the detoxification of the body and guarantees the elimination of an ammonia excess through the urine.
Arginine is semi-conditional or conditional amino acid, because our organism needs it during childhood but then it learns to synthesize it when we become adults, even though this does not mean that it is not important and necessary to obtain it from supplementation or food.
Arginine has been gaining more and more importance among sportspeople in the world of sport nutrition, since its properties for the organism are quite relevant, specially for metabolic processes.
We can find different types of arginine as nutritional supplements in the sport nutrition market depending on the degree of absorption and effectivity that we are looking for.
Arginine Alpha-Ketoglutarate (AAKG) is a combination of the arginine amino acid with alpha-ketoglutarate (AKG), a molecule that is obtained from the Krebs cycle, also known as the citric acid cycle.
The Krebs cycle is a process of the organism through which a metabolic pathway is derived from different chemical reactions that are produced through cell breathing, which is responsible for the release of energy in the organism. This process is truly important because it is responsible for the metabolic union of macronutrients like carbohydrates, fats, and proteins.
Therefore, binding a molecule from the citric acid cycle, alpha ketoglutarate, with the arginine amino acid produces AAKG, which is a way of taking arginine with a higher absorption and assimilation than other types of arginines.
Properties of Arginine Alpha-Ketoglutarate AAKG
AAKG precursor of nitric oxide
Nitric oxide is one of the elements that are responsible for the dilation of the blood vessels, which facilitates the absorption of the blood by the muscle, as well as for the rest of the organs, and it contributes to the supply of nutrients for the organism, which optimizes the growth of muscle, strength, and resistance.
Arginine promotes the synthesis of nitric oxide through the cytoplasmic enzyme nitric oxide synthase (NO Synthase).
We want to highlight the following functions of nitric oxide:
Contributes to the vasodilation
It plays an important role as a neurotransmitter
Contributes to the muscle recovery processes
It protects the muscle fibers during physical exercise
Arginine Alpha-Ketoglutarate AAKG and sport performance
Several studies support that the intake of arginine with alpha-ketoglutarate, or AAKG, improves muscle resistance and the production of maximum effort in physical exercises that involve power and resistance.
Taking alpha ketoglutarate through a nutritional supplement such as L-arginine alpha-ketoglutarate (AAKG) could increase the Krebs cycle flow, increasing the oxydation rate of acetyl-CoA.
Moreover, the supplementation with alpha ketoglutarate can help the body to save glutamate. This is important because AKG can be restored through the transamination of glutamate, which is a necessary amino acid to carry out protein anabolism and which is also a very important neurotransmitter of the excitatory nervous system. Therefore, the supplementation with alpha ketoglutarate can have ergogenic, neurological, and metabolic properties.
Arginine Alpha-Ketoglutarate AAKG and wound healing
The injuries that are caused by sunburns can be improved thanks to the intake of Alpha-Ketoglutarate (AKG), since the insufficient production of the two amino acids involved in the immune response, like glutamine and arginine, is generated thanks to the consumption of this molecule.
Therefore, another defining property of taking AAKG is its ability to produce the amino acids that are responsible for the immunomodulating properties in burns.
The functions of Arginine in the body
It is a necessary element in many physiological processes. These include the release of hormones (such as the production of the growth hormone) the elimination of toxic waste from the body, and the functioning of the immune system.
Arginine is a chemical raw material from nitrogen (responsible for the dilation of the blood vessels) and it is usually used to encourage a healthy sexual function.
The dietary supplements are very popular for their ability to eliminate the free radicals, to send signals to muscle cells in order to release growth hormone, to achieve healthy cholesterol levels, and to accelerate the metabolization of fat.
It also helps to regulate the amount of salt in the body. This is the reason why it is so interesting for bodybuilders, since the water that is stored under the skin gives a soft and turgid look to the muscles.
Arginine is also essential due to its vasodilatory effect and its role in the synthesis of proteins, which is fundamental for muscle development.
What foods contain Arginine?
It can be found in both foods of animal origin, as well as in protein-rich products of vegetable origin. The main sources of arginine are peanuts, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, legumes, eggs, dairy products, pork derivatives, chicken breast, and fish.
What are the symptoms of an Arginine deficiency?
Difficulty to heal wounds
Increased the susceptibility to infections
Risk of atherosclerosis
Vascular function and blood circulation disorders
Arginine consumption and administration:
It can be produced by the body, but in limited amounts which are not enough to meet the daily requirements of the organism. A daily intake of arginine in doses of 4-5 grams is considered adequate to prevent a deficiency in the body and the development of diseases.
These amounts are not enough to treat pre-existing diseases such as circulatory disorders or atherosclerosis. In addition, the body loses the ability to absorb the adequate amounts of arginine at just the age when diseases begin to increase.
In these cases, the experts advice using a dietary supplement of at least six grams of arginine to meet the daily recommended amount of this amino acid.
Who can benefit from Arginine?
Adolescents and children during their developmental phase, as well as old people
For those undergoing surgery or suffering from serious injuries
People with weakened immunological systems
Men with erectile dysfunction
People with cardiovascular disease
People suffering from functional disorders of the blood vessels
People with an unbalanced diet
Chronically ill people
Men seeking to improve their sexual function
The experts' opinion on arginine:
1. Nobel Prize for Medicine
The scientists Robert F. Furchgott, Louis Ignarro and Ferid Murad, received the Nobel Prize for medicine for their study on the relationship between nitric oxide and a healthy cardiovascular system. Arginine is the only source of volatile nitric oxide in the body.
2. Effect on cardiovascular diseases and cholestorol levels
According to Prof. Dr. Stefanie M. Bode-Boger of the Institute of Clinical Pharmacology of the University of Magdeburg, several studies have shown that both large and small intakes of this amino acid for a long time improve the vascular function of patients suffering from cardiovascular disorders (17 studies), patients with heart failure (39 tests), coronary heart disease (43 studies) and high cholesterol (20 studies).
Side effects and interactions of Arginine
Arginine dietary supplements consumed according to their recommended dose are completely safe and have no side effects. Those who suffer from herpes (herpes Labialis) should not consume this amino acid because it may trigger an outbreak. If you are using any other medicines, are pregnant, or suffering from low blood pressure, you should consult your doctor before starting its consumption.