L-Arginine is one of the most researched natural substances ever, with over 50,000 clinical papers and articles published.
A team of 3 American doctors won the Nobel Prize in Medicine for their discovery of the Nitric Oxide Pathway, the key to unlocking the magic of L-Arginine.
L-Arginine, or Arginine, is an essential amino acid that is generally found in red meat and other high cholesterol foods. Your body needs at least 3 grams of Arginine per day in order to live.
Recently, Arginine has been shown to offer benefits to people with risk factors including: arteriolosclerosis, atherosclerosis, high blood pressure, erectile dysfunction and many other health challenges.
How Does It Work?
Arginine is a precursor to Nitric Oxide (NO), meaning that the body converts Arginine into nitric oxide (NO) gas.
Nitric oxide (NO) is then used by the body to do many different things.
In fact, the discovery of the Nitric Oxide Pathway was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1998.
L-Arginine + Nobel Prize Winning Research
In 1998, three Americans were awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine for their discovery of the Nitric Oxide Pathway.
They were able to demonstrate that the body uses Nitric Oxide (NO) gas to make blood vessels relax, elastic and dilated, a significant finding in the battle against heart disease, and other vascular diseases.
What Is Nitric Oxide?
Over 50,000 articles in the medical literature since 1980 attest that “absolutely everything in the body depends on it.”
Its function in human physiology is so important that the American Academy of Science named Nitric Oxide the “Molecule of the year” in 1992.
The Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded to scientists who began the research on Nitric Oxide in 1998 and now NO has been referred to as “The Molecule of the Millennium”.
“It does everything, everywhere. You cannot name a major cellular response or physiological effect in which [Nitric Oxide] is not implicated today. It’s involved in complex behavioral changes in the brain, airway relaxation, beating of the heart, dilation of blood vessels, regulation of intestinal movement, function of blood cells, the immune system, even how fingers and arms move.” -Dr. Jonathan S. Stamler, a professor of medicine at Duke University Medical Center
There are three types of Nitric Oxide (NO).
Endothelial-derived NO diffuses out of endothelial cells (cells lining arteries and veins) and into smooth muscle cells of arteries enhancing relaxation and other properties of vascular physiology.
Endothelial-derived NO also functions in platelets (blood cells responsible for blood clots) to inhibit aggregation or blood clotting.
Brain-derived NO affects several types of nerve cells and appears to be important in neurotransmitter pathways in both the central as well as peripheral nervous system and regulates the production and release of many hormones.
Macrophage-derived NO is important in the immune system. This type of NO helps macrophages, a type of immune cell, kill bacteria and tumor cells.
So, NO is important to the nervous system, the immune system and the vascular system, which supplies nutrients to all parts of the body.
Arginine, when combined with Oxygen, forms NO. Arginine, is a great natural source of all forms of NO.
What does Nitric Oxide do for blood vessels?
In a healthy endothelium, Nitric Oxide (NO):
- Keeps vessels pliable and elastic
- Keeps blood flowing smoothly
- Keeps platelets calm and prevents them from sticking to the vessel wall
- Keeps white blood cells calm and prevents them from sticking to the vessel wall
- Regulates oxidative enzymes in the cell, preventing oxidation
- Reduces growth and multiplication of muscle cells that thicken the vessel wall
- Slows plaque growth and suppresses atherosclerosis
- Melts away or shrinks plaque that already exists
Every major disease process today is directly or indirectly related to deficiency in NO, especially with a population with many risk factors.
Diabetes, Hypertension, Hyperlipidemia, Hypercholesterolemia, Cancer, Peripheral Vascular Disease, Coronary Artery Disease, Sickle cell anemia, Scleroderma, Renal Failure, Pulmonary Hypertension and Atherosclerosis are all associated with decreased levels of NO.
With the exception of Cancer, where NO functions in the immune system, most of these disease processes involve the vascular system and Endothelial derived Nitric Oxide (EDNO).
The primary function of EDNO is vascular homeostasis, or balance. NO maintains vascular health by enhancing endothelial reactivity.
What Is The Endothelium?
The endothelium is the inner lining of the blood vessels and as long as the endothelium remains reactive, they are supple, pliable and flexible. They are able to respond appropriately to the various changes that occur in blood vessels in the course of normal and abnormal physiology.
When Nitric Oxide (NO) decreases, the vessels may become stiff and rigid. This is called Atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries.
When we develop Atherosclerosis, the results may include high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, and ultimately death.
As long as we have plenty of NO, as supplied by Arginine, our blood pressure may remain low and we may have protection from many of the consequences of the aging process.
All blood vessels are lined with this coat of endothelial cells. The blood vessels in you skin, brain, heart, and all of your organs are lined with this film of tissue.
Only one cell layer thick, the endothelium seems almost immaterial, so thin that it cannot be seen by the naked eye.
The endothelium could even be considered the largest organ in the body.
Because this almost invisible veil lines all blood vessels, and because the body is comprised of about 100,000 miles of blood vessels, the endothelium has the surface area of eight tennis courts.
In fact, if all of the endothelial cells in the body were lumped together, they would weigh as much as the liver.
The endothelium as a selective filter, allowing some things in and some things out. It also exerts tremendous control over blood flow and serves as an interface between blood and the vessel wall.
This delicate tissue is a dynamic factory, producing a myriad of substances that maintain vessel health. When it’s healthy, it produces its own forms of heart medicine.
Arginine + Benefits
To date Arginine has been shown in animal as well as human trials that it may be effective in the following:
- Decreasing and Reversing Atherosclerosis by decreasing intimal thickening and monocyte accumulation
- Restore normal endothelial function in hypercholesterolemia
- Reversing consequences of Coronary Artery Disease
- Decreasing cholesterol and triglycerides
- Improves walking distance in Peripheral Vascular Disease
- Improves pain in Interstitial Cystitis
- Prolonged administration of Arginine reverses adverse effects of High Blood Pressure
- Decreases High Blood Pressure
- Decreases post operative infection and length of stay
- Increases Human Growth Hormone
- Improves outcome after Bypass Surgery
- Improves sexual function
- Improves exercise tolerance
- Improves renal function
- Improves glucose uptake in muscle cells
- Improves Asthma
- Improves cell mediated immunity
- Improves pituitary responsiveness and Modulates Hormonal Control
- Improves muscle performance
- Improves Diabetes and reverses Damage
- May prevent Diabetes
- Reduces blood clots and strokes
- Helps prevent restenosis after Angioplasty and bypass
- Helps prevent post surgical damage after intestinal manipulation
- May improve Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Improves osteoporosis
- May improve prostate function
- Helps protect in cardiac transplants
- Improve Scleroderma
- Improve Sickle Cell Disease
- Prevent Pre-eclampsia
- Improves exercise capacity in Pulmonary Hypertension
- Improves healing
- Reduces Ulcers
- Improves Peripheral Vascular Disease
- Improves outcome in Sepsis
- Improves Heart Failure
- Improves outcome of Cancer Treatment
- Improve Alzheimer’s
- Improves memory and cognitive functions
To summarize, Arginine is a safe and natural supplement to increase Nitric Oxide (NO) production, which may be an significant factor in the treatment and reversal of many disease states.
The impact of Arginine in preventive healthcare and Anti-Aging is profound, not to mention that it is a safe and effective replacement for Viagra®.
Arginine + Fertility
L-arginine is thought to improve the reproductive health of both men and women because:
1. It increases blood circulation to the uterus, ovaries and genitals .
increased blood flow can improve reproductive health. L-arginine allows for better blood circulation to the ovaries, allowing for optimum egg production.
The increased blood flow to the uterus also creates a better environment to allow the implantation of a fertilized egg.
Blood flow is important for the proper functioning of the reproductive organs, and may improve the chances of conception.
2. Nitric Oxide supports natural fertility.
L-arginine is used by the body to create Nitric Oxide (NO). Research has found that increased NO levels supports healthy inflammation levels which may help to prevent uterine fertility issues such as fibroids, endometriosis and PCOS.
Inflammation is a contributing factor to a number of fertility issues shown to negatively impact conception and implantation.
3. Supports normal sperm production.
Research has found that daily supplementation of Arginine can increase sperm production in men. In the study, the effects were noticeable 6-8 weeks from the start of supplementation.
Arginine may also improve the motility of sperm, thus increasing the chance of conception in couples suffering from low sperm motility.
Where IVF is used, Arginine can be used to improve the quality of sperm, increasing the the chance of achieving a fertilized egg.
4. Improves the production of cervical mucous.
The increased blood flow to the reproductive organs can aid in the production of cervical mucous.
Abnormal mucous production contributes to the challenges faced by around 1 in 20 women dealing with fertility issues.
Some women do not produce enough cervical mucous, and others produce a mucous that is too thick for sperm to travel through.
Arginine can encourage better production of cervical mucous through improved blood flow.
5. Supports a healthy libido
L-arginine increases blood flow to the genitals in both men and women, leading to an increased libido. In men, increased blood flow to the penis can result in more frequent and sustained erections.
Arginine is often suggested for men suffering from erectile dysfunction. In women, increased blood flow to the genitals can lead to increased sexual arousal and orgasm. A healthy libido plays an important role in conception.
Please note: You should also take l-lysine if you have herpes as l-arginine alone can trigger an outbreak.
Arginine An Alternative to Viagra®?
The 40 and above age group is also the most likely age group to want to use Viagra®.
In the genital tissue, NO triggers the release of c-GMP, which is a molecule that causes engorgement of this tissue.
Arginine releases NO to make sure there is plenty of c-GMP.
Viagra® is a drug that blocks an enzyme to make sure there is plenty of c-GMP. Arginine has been shown to be a safe and effective alternative to Viagra®.
Viagra® has been reported to be safe; however, the FDA public records suggest the opposite. These records reported that between April of 1998 and May of 1999 there were 1,473 adverse events including 255 serious heart rhythm disturbances, 53 episodes of congestive heart failure (weakened heart), 119 strokes, 517 heart attacks and 522 deaths.
1. Fried R, Merrell WC. The Arginine Solution. New York, NY. Warner Books, 1999.
2. Coffee, C J: Metabolism. Madison, Ct: Fence Creek Publishing, 1998.pp388-389
3. Catt KJ: Molecular Mechanisms of Hormone Action. In Endocrinology and Metabolism, 3rd ed. Edited by Felig P, Baxter JD, Frohman LA. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 1995, pp 138-139
8. http://natural-fertility-info.com/5-natural-ways-to-increase-your-cervical mucous.html