Want Better Sex? L-Arginine

     Over 800 scientific studies are published on Arginine.

 Arginine or L-Arginine has been studied with respect to its role in more than 150 diseases, but before I get into some of the other health areas, let's first review what arginine is, and why it's so important for your cardiovascular health. Once in the body, arginine is converted into another chemical known as nitric oxide, which can improve blood flow and stimulate the release of certain hormones, including insulin, and growth hormone. Arginine was first isolated in 1886. In 1932, scientists learned that arginine is needed to create urea, a waste product that is necessary for toxic ammonia to be removed from the body. In 1939, researchers discovered that arginine is also needed to make creatine. Arginine is considered a semi-essential amino acid, because we make some in our bodies. Every chemical reaction which occurs in the body relies on one or more of the twenty amino acids we have in our bodies. Amino acids and in particular arginine, are found in protein rich foods such as meat, dairy, nuts, beans, and some grains. When an "L" is placed in front of an amino acid (as it can be for any of the twenty in our bodies) it indicates that the amino acid can exist in two possible forms: L or D. Now, D-Arginine is often made for use by research by scientists but is not sold or used commercially. D-arginine is not found in nature though it is considered to be the mirror image of L-arginine in terms of its chemical structure. So, essentially there is no real difference between L-Arginine and Arginine, unless you are a scientist using D-Arginine.

The main benefit of arginine  is when it changes into Nitric Oxide in your body, which causes blood vessel relaxation (vasodilation). Evidence in many publications suggests that arginine may help treat medical conditions that improve with vasodilation, such as chest pain, clogged arteries (atherosclerosis), coronary artery disease, erectile dysfunction, heart failure, and blood vessel swelling that causes headaches. Not only that, arginine also triggers the body to make protein, and has been studied for wound healing, bodybuilding, and enhancement of sperm production. Question...What do arginine, car exhaust, dynamite and fireflies have in common? The answer, Nitric Oxide, simply abbreviated NO. One nitrogen atom attached to one oxygen atom. Nitric Oxide is a soluble, highly reactive gas produced in certain animal, and plant cells from the amino acid arginine, and is a byproduct of combustion, as well as a product of natural chemical reactions in our atmosphere. Nitric Oxide can be derived from nitroglycerin as well, which is a major component of dynamite. Nitric Oxide also plays a role in firefly (lightening bugs) flashing.

It's a very prevalent molecule in the environment, but it has only been in the last 20 years that scientists have discovered just how important it is to your health. The many roles of Nitric Oxide, biological and otherwise, are so impressive that it was dubbed "Molecule of the Year" by Science magazine in 1992, followed by the 1998 Nobel Prize in Medicine for its discovery as a signaling molecule in the cardiovascular system. FYI don't confuse nitric oxide (NO) with nitrous oxide (N2O), or "laughing gas," the anesthetic gas used by dentists, which is two nitrogen atoms attached to one oxygen. Ok back to arginine, most of the health benefits of arginine are related to the fact that it's a precursor to Nitric Oxide in your body. Arginine is the only known nutritional substrate in your blood vessel lining available to endothelial cells (cells lining the interior surface of your blood vessels) for nitric oxide production. So your blood vessels require Arginine to synthesize nitric oxide.
http://www.naturalypure.com/images/L-Arginine.jpgNitric Oxide has been shown to enhance blood flow and help you maintain optimal blood pressure. Nitric Oxide signals the smooth muscle cells in your blood vessels to relax, so that your vessels dilate and your blood flows more freely. This helps your arteries stay free of plaque. When you have inadequate Nitric Oxide, your risk for coronary artery disease increases.  It also operates as a signaling molecule in your brain and immune system. If your blood is flowing freely, then nearly every physiological process will function better. If your blood is sluggish, then important cells and nutrients can't reach the areas that need them. In addition to improving blood flow and vessel elasticity, L-Arginine plays other important biological roles it:
  • Helps get rid of ammonia: A toxic waste product. Your cells release nitrogen all the time from the normal process of repairing and replacing damaged cells, and this nitrogen combines with hydrogen to form ammonia.
  • Assists in producing other amino acids: creatine, L-proline, and L-glutamate. Creatine is important to muscle energy and proper nervous system function. L-proline is important for collagen synthesis and the healing of wounds. L-glutamate is an excitatory neurotransmitter, key to brain function, especially left hemisphere functions (logic and reasoning, language, computational skills, learning and memory).
  • Promotes good sexual function: for both men and women. Increased microcirculation in genital tissues results in stronger erections and better sexual responsiveness, by the same nitric oxide mechanism.
  • Has endocrine effects: Simply put it promotes the release of two important hormones, human growth hormone (HGH) and prolactin
L-Arginine combined with L-Citrulline's effectiveness has also been studied in combination with antioxidant supplements, and the results from these studies is even more dramatic. The introduction of antioxidants to the already powerful effect of L-Arginine and L-Citrulline allows for these two supplements to better do their jobs because the antioxidants deactivate or neutralize the effects of the free radicals in the body, allowing for the easier production of Nitric Oxide. So, Nitric Oxide production is the catalyst for improved blood flow and lower blood pressure. Furthermore, studies have shown that when the body has done a good job getting rid of a significant amount of free radicals, antioxidants can then restore the health of the cells that produce Nitric Oxide (the endothelial cells) and can create a better defense against future attacks on our immune system.
So here we are, Arginine for Better Sex... Well 75% of men with heart disease have erectile problems. It's understandable, when you think about it in terms of one major underlying factor, impaired circulation. If the blood vessels to your heart are damaged, your heart doesn't get optimal blood flow. If the blood vessels in your sex organs are restricted, your "flag pole ain't so stiff !" Don't forget  the side effects you may be suffering could be from all of those pharmaceutical concoctions you may be taking to manage your heart disease. It makes sense, then, that Nitric Oxide levels are a major factor in sexual function, and the research has proved this. In fact, this is how a leading ED drug treats erectile problems, it increases nitric oxide production, relaxing your blood vessels,

which increases blood flow to your organs, but, the price you might pay for using those pharmaceutical ED drugs, and ignoring the real cause of restricted blood flow is dangerous indeed. Along with a bunch of potentially dangerous pharmaceutical medicine side effects. Including the chance of heart disease, stroke and sterility. Conditions that clearly will not help you toward a long, healthy life. Arginine increases the action of nitric oxide, similar to ED drugs, but without, the potentially dangerous side effects. Two recent studies have shown that Arginine can be particularly effective when used in combination with two other natural agents:

    In terms of dosage, a pilot study published in the Journal European Urology found 6 grams of arginine combined with 6 mg of yohimbine was successful in treating men with ED. Nitric oxide is also believed to play a role in women's sexual function. (Musicki et al, 2009). Since Nitric Oxide is a gas, you can't just pop a pill to increase your NO level. You are very dependent on your body's synthesis of this gas from the raw materials you take in through diet. Make sure you get enough high quality protein, and a diet rich in organic whole foods that are loaded with antioxidants, and not pesticides. If you suspect you may be deficient in arginine, you might consider the added protection of a supplement, but it is my STRONG recommendation to first try to obtain it through normal dietary food sources, it is the best way to experience the benefits of this nutrient. Foods high in protein are also usually high in arginine. According to the Mayo Clinic, some good animal sources of the amino acid include meat, chicken and dairy products. Beef flank steak, for instance, has about 1,200 mg of arginine per 3.5-oz serving, according to traditionaloven.com. A chicken breast has about 1,000 mg in the same serving size, while cheddar cheese has about 950 mg. Some of the foods highest in Arginine are:
    • Seeds (sesame, pumpkin, sunflower, poppy, caroway)
    • Seaweed (spirulina is an excellent source)
    • Nuts (walnuts, almonds, peanuts)
    • Coconut
    • Eggs and Whey
    • Beans
    Fish is another good source of arginine, with several species having high levels of the amino acid. Anchovies, and tuna both have more than 1,700 mg in a 3.5-oz. serving, while sardines have close to 1,500 mg in the same amount. Shellfish is also a good source of arginine, with shrimp supplying 1,776 mg per 3.5-oz serving, and scallops 1,223 mg. The arginine content of most other fish species is between 1,000 and 1,200 mg per 3.5-oz serving. So arginine is naturally present in many foods. Proven in studies arginine lowers cholesterol, increases male and female response to intimacy, boosts your immune system, and keeps you mentally alert.
    Arginine also increases your body's ability to burn fat, while at the same time helping to increasing muscle mass. Arginine is also an HGH enhancer. It stimulates your body to release the anti-aging, human growth hormone. Human growth hormone has been shown to slow and often reverse your aging process.  Your bone density will also increase. All of these atributes make arginine one of the most important discoveries concerning our health, of the century. A very good reason to make sure we are not lacking in this essential amino acid.  Arginine supplements are likely safe, and well tolerated in doses up to 20 grams per day, according to live strong .com and the NYU Langone Medical Center. Those with low-blood pressure should not take arginine, as it may lower blood pressure even further. Arginine may also make herpes worse by allowing the herpes virus to multiply. To be on the safe side, pregnant or nursing women, young children, and individuals with kidney or liver disease should avoid arginine supplements. Arginine should not be taken with medications for high blood pressure or medications that increase blood flow to the heart. Always check with your doctor when changing your diet if you are on prescription medications. Unless you're an elite athlete, you can most likely obtain plenty of this amino acid from pure organic food sources. Good Luck...

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