Top Health Benefits of Nitric Oxide

happy and healthy couple with nitric oxide for multiple health benefitsNitric oxide has become widely recognised in the medical and health & fitness communities. Also referred to simply as “NO”, nitric oxide is what is known as a vasodilator.

This is a medical term which signifies that it helps to expand blood vessels and capillaries throughout the body. In turn, a greater amount of oxygen and nutrients can be absorbed by the muscles and organs.

Visually, this can be seen either

  • in the “pump” that will be felt by athletes in muscles who take nitric oxide before a training session.
  • in the mechanical effect of an erection, where NO is a critical neurotransmitter.

However, it can also simply be felt when the immune system improves and one has better, constant energy throughout the day.

 

Benefits of Nitric Oxide

Now that we understand how NO works, it is important to appreciate some of the benefits that can be enjoyed at nearly any age.

Watch Dr Ignarro, who won the Nobel Prize in 1992 in Medicine for the discovery of Nitric Oxide:

More Nutrients are Supplied Throughout the Body

It only stands to reason that blood vessels which have expanded are able to transport more nutrients to different parts of the body (such as the extremities). Not only will this enable the muscles to function for longer without becoming fatigued, but nitric oxide is often used in synergy with other supplements such as glutamine, creatine monohydrate and amino acids.

NO is widely recognised in increasing the strength and endurance of many athletes.

Memory Functions

Another interesting effect of nitric oxide is that it has been shown to help boost alertness and memory. This is accomplished due to the fact that just like the muscles and organs, the brain will enjoy an increased supply of blood and oxygen.

Still, nitric oxide also effects the way that substances known as neurotransmitters work. These are tiny chemicals which help the cells within the brain “talk” to one another.

By increasing their efficiency, many have stated that they are much more energetic while not experiencing the “jitters” often associated with substances such as caffeine.

Stronger Immune System

NO derived from Arginine plays a major role in immunity and inflammation by affecting most immune cells, including T cells. At low doses, NO enhances T-cell mitogenesis.

Lower Blood Pressure

It should stand to reason that nitric oxide is an excellent way to help moderate one’s blood pressure due to its ability to relax veins and capillaries. So, some doctors have begun to recommend it when used in conjunction with exercise and other healthy lifestyle changes. However, it should be noted here that the use of nitric oxide may be contraindicated should other medications be taken. Always consult a doctor before use should you be on other pressure-regulating substances.

Inflammation-Reducing Benefits

There are many forms of inflammation that are a result of the buildup of fluids within the joints or the extremities. As nitric oxide dramatically improves circulation, the levels of inflammation can be properly dealt with over time. This is particularly the case when this condition is caused by poor blood flow (such as can be seen in advanced cases of diabetes).

The Removal of Toxins from the Body

Many will tout the benefits of nitric oxide in regards to its ability to supply the muscles with much-needed nutrients. It is just as important to highlight the fact that this very same process will help the body to more effectively eliminate the buildup of toxins. Veins and arteries will transport these harmful substances to the organs and the skin to be processed. In some ways, nitric can be viewed as a natural cleanser.

Heart Disease

Another benefit that has been found in recent times is the ability of nitric oxide to help in the prevention of heart disease. In a healthy heart, the interior surfaces known as the endothelium produce nitric oxide.

However, a buildup of plaque within these areas will effectively block such sites. The addition of nitric oxide to one’s diet can provide the heart with extra levels; compensating for the condition and improving its overall function.

Erectile Dysfunction

ED is a common condition as men become older. One of the primary components of this problem is a decreased blood supply to the capillaries within the penis.

As nitric oxide is a vasodilator, it can compensate for lower levels of blood flow. This is an excellent alternative for those who may not be able to take synthetic medications.

More and Denser Hair

Many hair products include Arginine, which is the sole precursor for NO. The better blood flow around the root of the hair will improve the amount of nutrients. This means that a thicker, healthier hair can grow.

Anti-Depression Effects

There are many users who will claim that their use of nitric oxide on a regular basis has helped to alleviate certain forms of anxiety and depression. This is likely due to the increased efficiency of the neurotransmitters that we had mentioned earlier.

Although the evidence behind these claims has not yet been fully verified, there are a number of subjective cases which seem to confirm this benefit.

Few (if Any) Side Effects

A final health benefit that always needs to be mentioned here is that nitric oxide will normally have no observable side effects. There is little toxicity (any excess is normally excreted) and the only feeling that some observe is a slight “tingling” sensation on their skin approximately 30 minutes after its ingestion.

Those who have been searching for health benefits without experiencing adverse reactions are quite pleased with this advantage.

Natural Sources of Nitric Oxide

While available in most nutrition and health food stores in the form of a supplement, there are several natural sources of nitric oxide. One of the most surprising is in the rind (the green portion) of the common watermelon.

Also, nitric oxide is found in respectable concentrations in red meat. Amino acids such as L-arginine and L-citruline will also help to increase the natural production of nitric oxide within the body. Citrus fruits such as lemons, grapefruits and oranges are all excellent sources. Finally, nuts and legumes are also known to contain appreciable amounts of nitric oxide.

The Verdict

There are many athletes and medical practitioners who feel that nitric oxide is one of the most potent and safest supplements on the market today. Whether one is a sportsman or suffers from mobility issues, nitric oxide is certainly a powerful option to consider. Those who are looking to increase their endurance, muscle mass and overall feelings of health will certainly not be disappointed with what nitric oxide can accomplish.