The body has a large number of molecules and organic compounds that are what help us to carry out our bodily functions. Among these we find a group called non-essential amino acids that are molecules that the body creates on its own and that, under normal conditions, we do not need to ingest. Among these so-called non-essential amino acids we find one in particular called ornithine , and this is very important for our body.
A curious fact is that despite being called ” non-essential amino acids “, these are usually quite important for the body, the reason why they are called ” non-essential ” is, as we mentioned at the beginning, because the body produces them, but they continue being important for the proper functioning of the body , and ornithine is no exception.
Today we will talk precisely about this amino acid, we will explain what ornithine is, what functions it performs in your body, some of its benefits and other information that will surely interest you.
What is ornithine?
Let’s start with the crucial thing, what is ornithine. The ornithine is a nonessential dibasic amino acid normally produced in the body starting from arginine , despite being a nonessential amino acid, it is not considered among the 20 standard amino acids not essential; although this does not diminish its function within our body. This is generated in the cytosol of our cells and fulfills different functions within our body.
This amino acid is also known as L-Ornithine or simply Ornithine, this because it is presented in an L-shape, similar to that of Glutamate or L-Glutamate; it happens in the same way with L-Arginine.
Ornithine or L-Ornithine can be found in many foods of animal origin such as fish, beef, and dairy products, as well as it can also be found in products such as soybeans, walnuts, rice, and wheat. The reason why it is known so much in the market is because it is an organic chemical compound that is capable of intervening in the muscle growth process, which we will talk about later.
How ornithine originates within the body
The ornithine or L-Ornithine occurs during the urea cycle , and as we previously mentioned, is an amino acid that is generated from arginine. The time when ornithine is produced is in the last step of the urea cycle. During this last step, Arginase, a cytosolic enzyme, cuts arginine and this results in two products, one of them is urea that we subsequently excrete and the other is ornithine, which returns to the first steps of the uric cycle. to fulfill one of its functions, to form citrulline, which incidentally intervenes in the creation of arginine that will later generate ornithine again.
ornithine and arginine Who produces whom?
Ornithine is generated from arginine , but in turn, ornithine is responsible for producing citrulline, which works together with Aspartate to produce Argininosuccinate, a compound that will later be cut to produce free arginine.
In short, we can see ornithine and arginine as a cycle, without ornithine the necessary citrulline to form arginine cannot be created; while arginine produces ornithine. So what does this mean? That ornithine is the precursor and product of arginine ; while both are very important amino acids in the formation of urea .
Now, even though the body generates this amino acid on its own, and under normal circumstances there is usually no ornithine deficiency; its integration into the diet is still recommended . This is due to the many properties and benefits it brings to the body; We will also talk about this later in this article, but for now we will discuss what the functions of ornithine are in our body and why it is so important despite the fact that it is not considered one of the standard non-essential amino acids.
What functions does ornithine fulfill in the human body?
The functions of ornithine in the human body are various, so to make it easier to understand we will explain them one by one. Starting with the one that would be the most important of all and for the one that is best known about this amino acid.
Involved in the urea manufacturing process
The ornithine involved in the manufacture of urea , in fact, during this process both ornithine and arginine is created. Its main function is to process toxic substances found within the body, such as ammonia, which is produced when we metabolize proteins when eating meat .
This is precisely one of the reasons why the consumption of ornithine is recommended for athletes or people who are trying to increase their muscle mass through protein-based diets ; Since both exercise and high protein intake tend to produce high levels of ammonia in the body, one of the tasks of this amino acid is to get rid of ammonia through urea.
This process also helps to take care of our liver, since high levels of ammonia can be harmful, luckily for us, ornithine is responsible for keeping these levels as low as possible , while your liver is responsible for processing other toxins that are also they are harmful to our health.
Stimulates hormonal synthesis
Another function that ornithine fulfills is the stimulation of hormones . Hormonal secretion is essential for our body, since through these hormones we fulfill many of our bodily functions, and ornithine influences the secretion of some of the most important hormones such as growth hormone and insulin, both Very important hormones since one of them is responsible for our body growth while the other is responsible for regulating the levels of sugar in our blood, thus avoiding serious diseases such as diabetes , as well as providing the necessary glucose for others processes within our body.
Intervenes in the formation of creatine
Another function of ornithine is to intervene in the formation of creatine . Creatine is one of the main responsible for the generation of muscle energy, that is, it is one of the reasons why our muscles can continue to work constantly without wearing out.
This is another reason why ornithine is so recommended for high performance athletes; since it intervenes in many anabolic processes like this and helps both muscle performance and the creation of new muscles.
Intervenes in the metabolization of fats
Ornithine is also involved in the metabolism of fats within the intestine , so it is even recommended to those who want to lose weight and lose body fat.
If consumed in conjunction with arginine, the fat-reducing effects in the body are enhanced. In general, it is possible to find both amino acids simultaneously in the same capsule. Therefore, if your goal is to enhance the metabolism of fats in your body, it is advisable to consume them together.
The ornithine , and the like other amino acids, usually involved in many processes in the body; that is to say, they are in constant operation within our organism in different processes. Next, we will briefly see some of the benefits of ornithine and why many specialists recommend it.
Its benefits are due to the various processes of our body in which it intervenes and the functions it performs in each of them. In fact, we have already mentioned some of the benefits it has for the body while we discussed what were the most important functions it performs in the human body.
Helps stimulate the generation of muscle mass
It is estimated that ornithine in conjunction with arginine can help your body to generate muscle mass ; Therefore, if you want to gain muscle, it is advisable to consume these amino acids. This happens because ornithine, like arginine, promotes the regeneration of muscle tissue, which is essential for the growth of muscle mass.
Promotes liver regeneration
Not only does it decrease ammonia levels in the blood, it also stimulates the synthesis of compounds such as proline and polyamines, which promote liver regeneration by accelerating cell replication . For this reason it is recommended to consume ornithine to people suffering from liver diseases.
Improves skin regeneration
Applying it to areas affected by burns helps speed up the healing process of wounds , as well as helping to rejuvenate dead skin and the recovery of internal tissue.
One of the reasons why its consumption is recommended to people who practice sports is because injuries are part of the athlete’s routine. Ornithine promotes muscle regeneration and helps tissue heal ; This also includes external injuries such as those that occur when we fall or cut ourselves.
Prevents infections and improves the immune system
One of its strengths is that it is excellent for helping your immune system fight infections and diseases. It is usually a good way to keep your immune system in optimal condition and reduce the chances of contracting diseases of all kinds. This is mainly due to the fact that ornithine stimulates the production of nitric acid in the body, which not only helps our immune system, but also helps relax our blood vessels.
Improves vitality and sexual potency
Another of the great benefits of ornithine in conjunction with arginine, is that they help improve vitality . They prevent premature aging while improving our energy levels and, in the case of men, they help sexual potency, allowing you to get longer lasting erections and even prevent erectile dysfunction problems. This is due to all the effects that ornithine and arginine have on the blood, such as the relaxation of the blood vessels, the detoxification of the blood and even the elimination of accumulated fat within the body.
Helps to have healthier skin
We mentioned before that ornithine helps to heal and regenerate our skin tissue, but these are the only benefits that this amino acid has on our skin. The ornithine helps you have a healthier and shiny skin ; This is mainly due to the fact that this non-essential amino acid is involved in the production of collagen, which is one of the main components of your skin and responsible for maintaining elastic and healthy skin.
In turn, collagen also acts in other parts of our body, such as our bones and tendons, so you can get an idea of the benefits that this amino acid has for many of the parts of our body.
How can ornithine be consumed?
Ornithine is a non-essential amino acid, that is, an amino acid that our body produces on its own and that its external intake is not necessary under normal circumstances.
However, and as you have seen, this amino acid offers us many benefits that we can very well take advantage of in many areas of our life, such as to exercise and build muscles, or simply to help our body to fulfill normal functions such as detoxifying. harmful substances in excess such as ammonia. Therefore, sometimes it would not hurt to take supplements of this amino acid.
Luckily for us, these types of supplements exist and you can get them very easily on the market . There are even a variety of online stores and manufacturers that are dedicated to selling nutritional products with ornithine, or sometimes compounds that contain both ornithine and arginine together, which, remember, work wonderfully when consumed simultaneously.
In a natural way you can also eat foods that contain these amino acids, at first we saw that the main foods that contain ornithine and arginine are meats such as the typical beef or fish; You can also get ornithine in other foods of animal origin such as eggs or dairy products such as milk or cheese. For those who lead a vegan life, they can also opt for foods such as rice, soybeans, and wheat, as these are also a good natural source of this amino acid.
No matter how you consume it, either naturally through food or in capsules, it is a highly recommended supplement , especially if you are currently under a strong exercise regimen and want to increase your muscle mass, or even if you simply want to lose weight . For athletes, ornithine is an excellent supplement with many benefits.
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.