Two recent studies show why you should consider adding arginine to your supplement arsenal.
Arginine is an amino acid that promotes fat loss in animals and humans. It appears to work by decreasing food intake, increasing metabolic rate, and reducing the growth of white adipose tissue (storage fat).
Jason McKnight and colleagues from Texas A&M University, in a review of literature, concluded that arginine supplements stimulate the growth of mitochondria (powerhouses of the cell) and promote the activity of brown fat— a highly thermogenic tissue that dissipates energy as heat rather than storing it as fat. Arginine supplements are a safe and effective way to reduce body fat, increase muscle mass, and improve metabolic health.
Arginine is also important amino acid used to produce nitric oxide, which is critical for blood flow control. British researchers from Exeter University found that supplementing 6 grams of L-arginine reduced blood pressure during exercise by 7 percent, increased blood levels of nitric oxide by 100 percent, and endurance capacity by 21 percent. Arginine supplements increase blood flow control and could be a valuable supplement for endurance athletes.
Consider supplementing with 3-5g of arginine 2-3 times a day, including one dose 30-45 minutes before training.
Amino Acids, 39: 349-357, 2010
Journal Applied Physiology, 109: 1394-1403, 2010