Arginine is a ‘conditionally essential’ amino acid that has been shown to have several potential ergogenic effects. Amongst others, arginine has been shown to have positive effects on recovery, body fat levels and markers of workout performance. So let’s take a look at some the reasons you should add arginine to your supplement cupboard.
Arginine and Muscle Growth
A widely associated benefit of arginine is a potential link with muscle growth. Arginine does this in two ways: increases blood flow to muscle tissue to help remove waste products and to help shuttle nutrients into damaged muscle tissue to help repair. The second is after a workout it helps to repair damaged muscle tissue, which means the muscle can repair quicker when using arginine and the athlete can therefore train more often – indirectly supporting muscle growth.
Arginine and Fat burning.
Arginine helps to utilize fat as an energy source while still helping to maintain lean muscle tissue. This is good for athletes looking to make strength gains but reduce body fat because fat is not needed to contract a muscle. For bodybuilders, arginine can be beneficial for two reasons: to help maintain a lower body fat while adding muscle mass and also for the preservation of lean tissue when dieting.
Arginine is also linked to enhanced endurance capacity. This would help endurance athletes to compete for longer at a higher intensity. Arginine does this by increasing blood flow to muscles, which assist oxygen flow to the working muscles. Without the increased amounts of oxygen to the muscles they would not be able to function properly or last for long periods of time.
Benefits of Arginine
The aforementioned positive effects suggest that arginine could be a very useful addition for a wide variety of athletes during training and competition. As long as the recommended dosages are followed and tolerance is assessed the individual can take arginine with no side effects and only positive outcomes. Arginine coupled with a good diet and hard training program could be an important training tweak for you and many other athletes.