Bodybuilding & Nitric Oxide and Why They’re Perfect Together


Nowadays you’ve often heard of how bodybuilders seek for amino acids supplementation to further their supply of nitric oxide. Basically, it’s a gas produced by the body from amino acids. Its ability to bring vasodilation effects, or enabling the blood vessels to relax, is what makes nitric oxide valuable, especially among those people in the bodybuilding world.

The relaxation of the blood vessels causes them to dilate, which augments the blood circulation. As blood flow is improved, more oxygen and nutrients are transported to the muscle tissues. Supplement manufacturers take advantage of this process by making nutritional products containing L-arginine, the amino acid that transforms into nitric oxide once in the system. As the levels of nitric oxide in the body are furthered, the more it becomes possible to grow lean muscle mass. This process explains why nitric oxide is an important term among bodybuilders.

Understanding the fundamentals

Bodybuilders who are devoted to their goals rate their trainings based on the creation of muscle pumps. Pumps are those muscles that are constricted they have no choice but to be visible, becoming that ripped physique many guys want to achieve. Muscle pumps signify one’s being diligent in the gym, undergoing vigorous and intense training sessions. Arginine users assert that the even the slim increase of nitric oxide in their systems as a result of arginine supplementation extends muscle pumps, which leads to boosted endurance.

How efficient is it?

preview-full-shutterstock_558821248The popularity of arginine supplementation is due to the actuality that it works. As a matter of fact, this amino acid has been subjected to various clinical studies where it was determined to being capable of addressing certain health states, such as impotence and weight loss linked to a medical problem. More importantly, it has been shown to bring positive results in terms of building lean muscle mass.

Bodybuilders cite this outcome as proof that even a momentary increase in nitric oxide levels due to arginine alteration can already result to bigger muscle growth and the making of new muscle tissue.

On the other hand, direct researches were also performed and showed varied results. Some studies conducted demonstrated only minimal boost in nitric oxide levels in the blood and there’s no improvement in blood pressure or heart rate for the participants who took arginine compared with the ones who didn’t.

Remembering precautions

preview-full-shutterstock_561920053Essentially, most of your arginine requirements can be provided by a normal diet. However, there are some individuals who encounter protein malnutrition or other health conditions that make supplementation a must. Bodybuilders who take too much arginine, as well as get their supply of this amino acid from their diet, tends to exceed in their consumption. This can lead to side effects, such as diarrhea, nausea, and exhaustion. Meanwhile, arginine supplementation is not ideal for people with low blood pressure. This is because increase of nitric oxide widens the blood vessels, which could result to the blood pressure plummeting even further.

Banned substances

The National Center for Drug Free Sport states that no supplements involving L-arginine are prohibited by any primary sports organizations in the United States. On the other hand, there are supplements that could also involve additional components that are prohibited by some other institutions. For instance, caffeine is included in NCAA’s list of forbidden component, but it is a main substance used in many supplements containing arginine. There’s also synephrine, another stimulant prohibited by NCAA and other organizations that is also commonly used in many arginine supplementation products.