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Arginine is one of the most important amino acids for the human body. It is consumed in tiny amounts through food.

It is indispensable for the heart and blood vessels, since it guarantees a healthy blood pressure, it improves the erection and production of sperm, and it increases the formation of muscles and physical agility.

Unfortunately, the organism's requirements of this amino acid are not completely met.

Moreover, there are specific stituations in which we need to increase the intake of arginine, like growth phases and pregnancy, diseases, or the demands of those who practice sports.

Taking into account that this amino acid, along with its derivative nitric oxide, have an essential role in many metabolic processes, in the last few years many people have decided to use arginine supplementation.

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 in recent years due to the fact that it helps to improve physical performance and to promote muscle development.

Table of contents

    1. What is Arginine and what is it for?
    2. The effects of Arginine
    3. Arginine is recommended for:
    4. The functions of Arginine in the body
    5. What foods contain Arginine?
    6. What are the symptoms of an Arginine deficiency?
    7. Arginine consumption and administration:
    8. Who can benefit from Arginine?
    9. The experts' opinion on arginine:
    10. Side effects and interactions of Arginine

What is Arginine and what is it for?

  • Arginine or L-Arginine is a semi-essential amino acid produced by the body from food.
  • It is formed in the human body and it contributes to the detoxification of the body through urine.
  • Arginine is the only precursor form of nitric oxide.
  • Arginine not only prevents thrombi 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.
  • The deficiency occurs mainly in the cases of high-performance sports, stress, smoking, growth phases, or injury.
  • Its main natural suppliers 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 functions the following stand out: vasodilation, reduction of lumps in 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 encourages the secretion 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 recommended for:

  • Arteriosclerosis
  • Blood vessels dysfunction (endothelial dysfunction)
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Male fertility disorders
  • Diabetes
  • Glaucoma
  • High performance sports
  • Acidification of the body
  • Immune system disorders
  • Healing of wounds or injuries
  • Reduction of the formation of nitric oxide
  • Maintain a healthy sexual function

The functions of Arginine in the body

Arginine powder supplement

It is necessary in many physiological processes. These include the secretion 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 often 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 to 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 foods that contain arginine include 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 susceptibility to infections
  • Risk of atherosclerosis
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Decreased libido
  • Vascular function and blood circulation disorders

Arginine consumption and administration:

It can be produced by the body, but in limited quantities which are not enough to meet the daily requirements. The 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.

With regard to pre-existing conditions such as circulatory disorders or atherosclerosis diseases, these amounts are insufficient. In addition, the body loses the ability to absorb adequate amounts of arginine at just the age when diseases begin to increase.

In these cases, the experts recommend using a dietary supplement of at least six grams of arginine to meet the daily recommended intake of this amino acid.

Who can benefit from Arginine?

  • Athletes
  • Pregnant women
  • Teenagers 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
  • Smokers
  • 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

HSN Essentials L-Arginine

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, it has been proven in numerous studies that both large intakes and the consumption of small intakes of this amino acid for a long time improve the vascular function of patients suffering from vascular heart 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 the recommended doses are completely safe and have no side effects. Those who suffer from herpes (herpes Labialis) should not consume this amino acid as it may result in 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.

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