I’m sure you’ve heard about NO products already. Nitric Oxide, or NO as it is more commonly referred to as, has become one of the most popular supplements in recent years. Many avid users of NO supplements will not even attempt to hit the weights if they are unable to take their pre-workout cocktail. With a beneficial list of side-effects including better pumps, increased strength and more endurance, it is no wonder that NO supplements have become all the rage.
But what is it that makes nitric oxide so effective, and are many of these pre-workout supplements based merely on hyped up marketing? To answer that, we first need to know how NO works.
NO supplies more blood to organs and muscles when it is needed. Nitric Oxide is always in your body, whether you’re using NO supplements or not. When you put yourself through a rigorous workout, NO “opens the blood floodgates,” allowing blood to surge to the muscles. This is the famous “pump” you hear about. Unfortunately, the pump is only temporary, and blood-engorged muscles soon must rescind to their normal state.
The purpose of nitric oxide supplements
is to increase the dilation of blood vessels, thus allowing more blood to flow through them and to the muscles. This results in more intense muscle pumps, greater vascularity, and more muscular fullness and hardness throughout the day.
The reason arginine is the main ingredient in NO supplements is because nitric oxide itself is a gas, thus making it very difficult to sell as a supplement. Arginine is an amino acid that produces NO as the result of an enzyme process. Humans consume roughly 2 to 5 grams of arginine per day, not including sports supplements. In order for NO supplements to produce beneficial effects, the dosage range should be from 3 to 5 grams (that means the serving size of the NO supplement should contain 3 to 5 grams of arginine). Anything less than this may not provide enough of a benefit.
Arginine and nitric oxide use are not limited to athletes. Most sexual enhancement formulas contain arginine, and it has also been shown to produce positive effects in individuals with heart conditions. With such a great list of uses and benefits, it is no wonder that arginine and nitric oxide have become such popular and effective supplements.