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Info on L-arginine


Info on L-arginine

What is L-Arginine?

L-arginine is an amino acid that has numerous functions in the body. It helps the body get rid of ammonia (a waste product), is used to make compounds in the body such creatine, L-glutamate, and L-proline, and can be converted to glucose and glycogen if needed.

L-arginine is used to make the nitric oxide, a compound in the body that relaxes blood vessels. Preliminary studies have found that L-arginine may help with conditions that improve when blood vessels are relaxed (called vasodilation), such as atherosclerosis, erectile dysfunction, and intermittent claudication.

L-arginine is also involved in protein formation. In larger amounts, L-arginine stimulates the release of hormones growth hormone and prolactin.
Why Do People Use L-Arginine?

Heart disease

In the body, L-arginine is used to make nitric oxide, which reduces blood vessel stiffness, increases blood flow, and improves blood vessel function.

However, L-arginine should not be used following a heart attack. An study sponsored by the National Institutes of Health examining the use of L-arginine after a heart attack was terminated early after six patients died, a disproportionate number. There were no deaths in the patients who did not receive L-arginine.

The study researchers speculate that L-arginine may aggravate the effects of cardiac shock. The results were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Erectile Dysfunction

L-arginine has been used for erectile dysfunction. Like the drug sildenafil citrate (Viagra), L-arginine is thought to enhance the action of nitric oxide, which relaxes muscles surrounding blood vessels supplying the penis. As a result, blood vessels in the penis dilate, increasing blood flow, which helps maintain an erection. The difference in how they work is that Viagra blocks an enzyme called PDE5 which destroys nitric oxide and L-arginine is used to make nitric oxide.
In one study, 50 men with erectile dysfunction took either 5 grams of L-arginine per day or a placebo. After six weeks, more men in the L-arginine group had an improvement compared to those taking the placebo.

Unlike Viagra, L-arginine must be taken daily.
Wound healing

L-arginine’s possible activity in wound repair may be due to it’s role in the formation of L-proline, an important amino acid that is essential for the synthesis of collagen.
Other Conditions
L-arginine is also used for high blood pressure, migraines, sexual dysfunction in women, intermittent claudication, and interstitial cystitis.

Sources of L-Arginine

L-arginine is conditionally essential, which means that the body normally has enough. It’s produced in the kidney and to a lesser extent, in the liver.

Food sources of L-arginine include plant and animal proteins, such as dairy products, meat, poultry, fish, and nuts. The ratio of L-arginine to lysine is also important - soy and other plant proteins have more L-arginine than animal sources of protein.

Severe burns, infections, and injuries can deplete the body’s supply of arginine. Under these conditions, L-arginine becomes essential and it is necessary to ensure proper intake to meet the increased demands.

L-arginine is also essential for children with rare genetic disorders that impair the formation of L-arginine.
Side Effects of L-Arginine

L-arginine may lower blood pressure because it is involved in the formation of nitric oxide. It may also result in indigestion, nausea, and headache.

L-arginine should not be used following a heart attack. If you have a history of heart disease, consult your doctor before taking L-arginine.

Higher doses of arginine can increase stomach acid, so it may worsen heartburn, ulcers, or digestive upset cause by medications. Arginine appears to increase stomach acid by stimulating the production of gastrin, a hormone that increases stomach acid.

L-arginine may also alter potassium levels, especially in people with liver disease. People with kidney disease and those who take ACE inhibitors or potassium sparing diuretics should not use supplemental L-arginine unless they are under professional supervision. It may also alter the levels of other chemicals and electrolytes in the body, such as chloride, sodium, and phosphate.

Arginine may increase blood sugar levels, so it shouldn’t be used by people with diabetes unless under a doctor’s supervision.

Pregnant and nursing women and children should not use supplemental L-arginine, as it’s safety has not been established.

People with genital herpes should not take L-arginine because it may aggravate their symptoms.
Possible Drug Interactions

L-arginine may counteract the benefits of lysine to treat herpes

NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatories) or other drugs that are hard on the stomach should not be combined with L-arginine.

Drugs that alter potassium levels in the body, such as ACE inhibitors and potassium sparing diuretics.

Schulman SP et al. “L-arginine therapy in acute myocardial infarction: the Vascular Interaction With Age in Myocardial Infarction (VINTAGE MI) randomized clinical trial”. JAMA. 295.1 (2006):58-64.
Updated: September 20, 2007

Growth hormone

Arginine increases the production of growth hormone.[9] Reports of it’s effects on male muscular development are not clearly proven.

[Edit] Prolactin

Although there haven’t been thorough studies, some sources claim that arginine helps release prolactin, an estrogenic compound which is associated with lactation, and like all estrogenic compounds may curb the secretion of testosterone[citation needed]. Thus some bodybuilders stay away from pure arginine, intaking only amounts naturally found in protein.

Thank you.. Great post about arginine.

I took arginine for a while and it seems to have at least a modest effect on weight lifting however I’m not sure of it’s sexual effects

Hi I have a Question about L-Arginine? I have recently went to GNC and purchased L-Arginine 1000mg capsules.

My question is about the right dosage? And Can you take two capsules at the same time

I started taking two a day but, I was thinking about increasing the dosage to 3000mg or 3g taking one in the morning and two late at night or before bed

I understand already about taking L-Arginine on a empty stomach because of it being an amino acid eating will only lessen the effect on the body therefore wasting the product.

Thank you.

Originally Posted by animeraven
My question is about the right dosage? And Can you take two capsules at the same time

Yes you can. Some guys need large enough doses to feel the effects as to you pretty much require dosing in gram amounts. Do a search in this very forum and get more info.

If you decide to keep using L-Arginine shop either or and pay pennies on the dollar compared to what GNC charges you.

Arginine Base at $35/Kg

Arginine Alpha Ketoglutarate 2:1 at $60/Kg

Arginine Ethyl Ester Powder at $110/Kg

Running a Massive Co-Front.

Before I write anything else, excuse me for my ignorance.
I have a few questions. I searched the site a bit and looked through a few threads. For every thread, there seems to be a different “best” product.
The results of my little researching were pretty inconclusive.

Besides the price, what is the difference between these products?
I read some of the reviews at bulknutrition and it seems to me that the Arginine Base is out of the picture for me.
Is there a difference in quality? So that if I bought 500g of Arginine Ethyl Ester Powder, it would basically be the same as buying 1kg of
Arginine Alpha Ketoglutarate?

I read here at TP that some of these products contain taurine. I really don’t want sleepless nights.
How do you dose it? I would probably start out by taking 1000mg a day.
Is the dosing just “put some L-arginine on a teaspoon, mix it with water, drink it and I’m done” or what?

It would be nice if someone could enlighten me on this.

Start: 6.7" BPEL 4.7" MSEG

Now: 7.3" BPEL 5.0" MSEG

Goal: 8.0" BPEL 5.5" MSEG

I can’t help you with the differences between these forms of arginine. I’ve been trying to find that too.

I’m curious why you’re ruling out base. And I wonder about your taurine comment. I take arginine base and taurine three times a day (3 gm/ 1 gm), including just before bedtime, and haven’t noticed any effect on sleep.

There’s a site called which has pretty reasonable prices, as well as convenient trial sizes of some things. They sell 300 g of base for $12, and 150 g of AKG for $9, and I believe shipping is still $5.

As far as taking it is concerned, I’ve found the least unpleasant way to take it is to put it on a big spoon, rake it off the spoon with your lips into your mouth, and then immediately wash it down with water. Actually, that applies to base, which doesn’t taste very good. Mixing it with water first and then drininking it just prolongs the unpleasantness. You don’t really taste the powder if you wash it down quickly. However, I don’t think AKG has much taste.

Either way, you do want to drink a glass of water with it because I’ve found that base in particular tends to dry you out.

If you find any good info on the various forms, please post here.

I’m ruling out the base just because of the reviews. The other two seem to be of higher quality. I could be wrong in saying that - I really don’t know.

As for the taurine, here’s a quote from Mr. Happy in What’s the best L-arginine on the market? thread: “At night I take NoX 3000 because it is just Arginine Alpha-Ketoglutarate without the Taurine, which can keep you awake (Red Bull anyone?). It’s always best to take on an empty stomach.”

Although I don’t even drink coffee, sometimes I have trouble going to sleep so the last thing I would need is something keeping me up.
I only use energy drinks and/or caffeine pills if I really need to stay awake.

Did a little googling - “Arginine Ketoglutarate And Alpha-Ketoglutarate (AKG)

Researchers and physicians caution that Alpha-ketoglutarate is not recommended for human use.”

Right. :D

Edit: The source -…ormsofLArginine

Edit2: What’s this then? Is it all bullshit?

Start: 6.7" BPEL 4.7" MSEG

Now: 7.3" BPEL 5.0" MSEG

Goal: 8.0" BPEL 5.5" MSEG

Well, I don’t know what reviews you’re referring to.

Frankly, I agree with your scepticism of the sites related to argm2. Basically it seems to be “all forms of arginine are bad except the one I sell.”

There certainly is a lot of arginine AKG being sold for human use.

I’ve just never seen a technical, formal explanation of how alternate forms like AKG work better than base - something not driven by marketing considerations.

I read a study that showed L arginine raises post workout estrogen by an average of %50, so I stopped taking it.

Starting: (2/1/06) (nbpel=7.8) (bpel=8.15) (eg=5 3/16)

06/29/07: (nbpel=8 1/2) (bpel=9) (mid eg=6) (base eg 6.25)

Comparison Pictures, 8in to 9in= My Comparison Pic thread.

Originally Posted by ThePapSmearster

I read a study that showed L arginine raises post workout estrogen by an average of %50, so I stopped taking it.


Originally Posted by ChuckR
Well, I don’t know what reviews you’re referring to.

I’m referring to the reviews on

Start: 6.7" BPEL 4.7" MSEG

Now: 7.3" BPEL 5.0" MSEG

Goal: 8.0" BPEL 5.5" MSEG

Cheapest L-Arginine in the UK? currently at Holland and Barrett, 50 x 500mg for £1.59

Is there any validity to the estrogen level increase? Practically every bodybuilding publication I’ve read puts Arginine in its essential supps list.

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