It is well known that our body depends on different amino acids, proteins and nutrients for its proper functioning. In the case of amino acids, there are 20 that are most essential for the body , arginine being one of them.
That is why, below we will talk about arginine and everything that comprises this amino acid in general. So that in this way, you can know from what it is to how it is composed, in what foods you can find it and all the benefits that it can have for the body.
What is arginine?
Arginine or L-arginine is basically an amino acid that is found in a large number of foods that are usually consumed regularly. In addition, as just mentioned, it is part of the group of 20 amino acids that are present within proteins. These being of great importance for the proper functioning of the body .
However, in some cases arginine may be considered a semi-essential element for the body. This is due to the fact that it is believed that during the early stages of life, such as childhood, the body does not take advantage of all the benefits that this amino acid provides .
However, in adulthood the scenario changes completely regarding this. Since, at this stage, the presence of arginine is considered very necessary for the body. Although there may be some cases where arginine is not of great importance for the diet, it should be noted that in most cases it is usually quite relevant.
As far as the chemical aspect is concerned, arginine is known in its nomenclature as ‘Arg’ in its traditional nomenclature system. In the current system, this amino acid is usually represented only by the letter R.
Regarding what is related to its molecular composition, it is composed of carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and oxygen. In addition, it could be said that one of its basic or essential functions is to contribute to the composition or compilation of proteins.
What is it for?
The use of arginine can be quite wide and varied due to all its properties. However, it is often seen the use of this amino acid mainly to treat different health conditions , as well as to complement sports training. Next, we will tell you a little about some of them:
Arginine is characterized by bringing great health benefits as mentioned before. Therefore, the controlled consumption of this amino acid is normally used in diets that are intended to treat different health problems .
Found mainly among these, those related to blood pressure problems , as well as viral or bacterial diseases. In the same way, arginine is often used to speed up the process in which wounds heal, as well as to help purify the body of some wastes.
For physical training
Arginine is closely related to nitric oxide, which has the function of allowing more nutrients to travel through the body through the blood. Thus, many supplements used in the sports world are characterized by containing this amino acid within their components.
Likewise, it is mentioned that arginine, by having an influence on growth hormone, can contribute both to the increase in mass, as well as to the recovery of muscle .
In addition, arginine can also help a more effective recovery after physical activity. As well as, it can contribute to the fact of losing fat.
It is for all this that this amino acid is usually so present in the different supplements that athletes use to obtain greater benefits during their workouts.
How does Arginine work in the body?
Arginine in the body acts through nitric oxide , which basically allows blood vessels to expand. This as a consequence, brings a positive effect as far as blood circulation is concerned.
It should be noted that Arginine synthesis tends to develop mainly in the area that communicates the intestinal area with the kidney. That is why when there are problems in these parts of the body, the dose of arginine that the body withdraws can be reduced.
When this happens, it is necessary to implement in the diet the consumption of foods that can compensate for the amount of arginine necessary for the body. So that in this way, the body can continue to work properly without presenting complications.
How is Arginine obtained?
There are several ways to get Arginine for the body. This can be through different supplements or naturally through food.
Arginine through supplements
The use of this amino acid in supplements is used largely by athletes and sportsmen due to all the benefits it has. To buy them, just go to some of the stores that sell products and supplements related to ‘fitness’, or sports training.
Arginine Containing Foods
There are a large number of foods that contain this amino acid. Being thus both in those of marine origin, in some meats, as well as some nuts and grains, such as:
- Pumpkin and sunflower seeds.
- Dairy products.
- Red meat
It should be noted that since this amino acid is so present in different protein foods, it is enough to have a balanced diet where enough proteins are consumed to ingest the recommended amount of arginine.
Remember that this recommended amount in general, usually ranges from 3 to 5 grams per day. However, there are cases where the dose may be higher. Therefore, it is recommended to consult this issue with a health professional in case you suspect that you are ingesting a greater amount of this amino acid.
What are the recommended doses?
As each case is different, it is advisable that you go to a health professional to find out the recommended dose for you . Likewise, it is not recommended that pregnant women include this amino acid in their diets without any medical prescription.
Taking into account that said doses can vary according to different factors, such as the type of condition that you want to treat, the daily consumption of it can range from 3 grams onwards.
What are its benefits?
As mentioned above, the health benefits that arginine can bring are vast as well as quite varied. Thus, among some of them the following:
- It can help increase sexual potency.
- Contributes to hair growth.
- Helps improve insulin sensitivity.
- Contributes to the production of collagen .
- It can help lower cholesterol.
- It can relieve some body aches.
- It discards substances that the body does not need.
- Helps prevent premature aging.
- It contributes to the expulsion of ammonia in the cells.
- Helps capture free radicals .
In addition, it is also possible that this amino acid contributes to the functions of the body’s immune system. Since, it is believed that arginine can work as a stimulant for lymphocytes to reproduce more effectively .
This, without leaving aside the fact that in addition to adhering within cell walls, it can help to effectively fight different types of infections.
Thus, having all these benefits, arginine is commonly used for different types of treatments. Therefore, the use of it can be seen to treat injuries, as well as different conditions, such as:
- Problems related to sexual health.
- Pains in the chest and muscles.
- Hypertension problems .
- Recovery processes after an operation.
Arginine is an amino acid that brings great benefits to the body, and its use is quite wide and varied. Best of all, is that being present in a large amount of food, the recommended daily dose of this amino acid can be easily consumed through a balanced diet rich in protein.
Adverse effects of Arginine
Despite the fact that most of the times the recommended doses of this amino acid can be safe for health , the problem can appear when there is an excess or deficit of arginine.
Complications from its excessive consumption
Remember that all excesses are bad, and far from bringing benefits, they bring counterproductive results. Thus, in cases where the consumption of arginine is exceeded, different symptoms that affect health may appear.
Thus, among the most characteristic of these the following:
- Nausea, dizziness, and vomiting.
- General discomfort.
- Some types of allergies.
Complications due to deficit
It should be taken into account that the doses of arginine that the body requires to function properly are usually quite low. Therefore , being deficient in this amino acid is not very common . However, there are cases where this problem can occur, thus generating some symptoms such as:
- Problems producing insulin.
- Muscle pain and exhaustion.
- Fatty liver .
- Hair loss.
- Problems in metabolism.
- Constipation problems .
- Pain, as well as abdominal bloating.
Arginine for sports training
It has been said that the doses of arginine recommended in general standards for training, are usually about 3 to 5 grams daily . In addition, during workouts, it is best to take supplements of this amino acid in the middle of some meals.
Consume Arginine before training
On the other hand, it is believed that the most advisable thing to take full advantage of the effects of Arginine is to ingest it at least 1 hour before training. Since, if this amino acid is consumed in advance, the famous ‘pump’ effect will occur , which consists of the dilation of blood vessels.
This, as a consequence, will be positive for both the circulation of nutrients as well as the blood in the body. In addition, it will be reflected in training, by obtaining a higher performance.
Consuming Arginine after training
To take advantage of other benefits while not training, it is also advisable to consume this amino acid before going to sleep. Since, in this way they would be taking full advantage of its antioxidant effects, which can be beneficial for the process of muscle hypertrophy .
It should be noted that on those days when sports training is not performed, it is advisable to take Arginine supplements in the morning. Since in this way, the body will be able to absorb said amino acid in a more effective way.
Indications to consider before consuming arginine supplements
In order to avoid presenting any type of complication derived from the misconsumption of this amino acid , it is necessary to consult with your doctor before taking arginine supplements , in cases such as:
- Suspected pregnancy, pregnant or lactating.
- Suffering from respiratory diseases or asthma .
- If you have allergies.
- If you have Herpes.
- In case of being diabetic or presenting problems related to diabetes .
- In case of suffering from any kidney or liver disease.
- If you take anticoagulant products.
- In case products such as viagra are consumed, as well as some type of antihypertensive.
- In case you have suffered from heart problems recently.
If you have doubts, do not hesitate to go to the doctor
In case you are considering changing your diet to increase or decrease the amount of arginine you consume daily, or if you are going to implement the use of supplements, it is recommended that you go to your doctor and get the corresponding checkups done before doing so. .
Since, that way you will be able to know the recommended daily dose for the consumption of arginine in your case. In addition, you will also know if you are in optimal conditions to ingest this amino acid in supplements.
Hello Readers, I am Nikki Bella a Psychology student. I have always been concerned about human behavior and the mental processes that lead us to act and think the way we do. My collaboration as an editor in the psychology area of Well Being Pole has allowed me to investigate further and expand my knowledge in the field of mental health; I have also acquired great knowledge about physical health and well-being, two fundamental bases that are directly related and are part of all mental health.