L-citrulline is a common dietary supplement compound classified as a non-essential amino acid. This means that it is already present in the human body and not necessarily obtained from food sources. Health care experts, however, recommend supplementation of the compound to augment the effects of that which is already naturally occurring in cells and tissues.
Essentially, L-citrulline plays a vital role in maintaining heart and blood vessel health by regulating nitric oxide levels in the body. Thus, it is believed that supplementation of the said compound may support healthy blood flow and overall cardiovascular health.The CAS number of the L-citrulline is 72-75-8. Its molecular formula is C6H13N3O3 and its molecular weight is 175.19 g/mol. It has white crystals or white crystalline powder appearance. The powder is also soluble in water.
Purification processes yield about 98% pure L-citrulline.
L-Citrulline vs. L-Arginine
Both L-citrulline and L-arginine are amino acids necessary in maintaining blood flow through nitric oxide regulation. In general, L-citrulline is converted into L-arginine in the body. However, it was revealed in one study that while L-arginine is the more active form when it comes to increasing blood flow, L-citrulline supplementation is more effective in maintaining arginine concentration and availability than L-arginine supplementation itself.
The body may benefit from L-citrulline supplementation in a lot of different ways by simply increasing blood flow. With these health benefits, individual customer reviews give the product a five-star rating.
Experts say that citrulline may help support muscle growth and development and prevent these muscles from experiencing fatigue during a performance of a high-intensity exercise. One of the reasons why muscles experience fatigue is that oxygen and nutrient supply in the area is compromised due to a sudden increase in demand during exercise. Thus, by promoting improved blood flow through nitric oxide patterns, the oxygen and nutrient supply of muscles is met even with the consequent increase in demand during workouts. This results in longer endurance and subsequent muscle growth.
It is important to remember that L-citrulline supplementation does not diagnose, treat, cure or prevent muscle wasting secondary to underlying medical conditions. It does not, as well, prevent any disease affecting the musculoskeletal system, but only promotes muscle growth and development by improving workout efforts.
Taking L-citrulline or any amino acid alone without exercise or workout performances will not improve bodybuilding efforts as it only intends to support workouts.
Health care experts say that increasing nitric oxide levels in the blood may promote blood circulation by dilating blood vessels or widening the pathways for blood, especially arteries. Improved blood flow does not necessarily prevent any disease but it may support nutrient and energy supply in the different organ systems of the body, especially those located in distal areas. Thus, pure citrulline l supplement may be beneficial to enhance overall wellness.
Some medical studies have shown that L-citrulline may be helpful in reducing blood pressure among patients who are diagnosed with hypertensive medical conditions. This is because it reverses vasoconstriction which is the reason why increased blood pressure develops among hypertensive persons. Overall, it is believed that L-citrulline supplements, as nitric oxide promoters, help maintain cardiovascular health and wellness.
The effect of L-citrulline in diabetic patients as an agent which supports the production of nitric oxide is also being studied as it may be helpful in the control of poor blood circulation.
Promotes protein metabolism
A gradual decline in the body’s ability to absorb nutrients leading to poor nutritional status is a sign of the onset of elderly age. According to experts, protein-energy malnutrition is a very common occurrence among individuals in the elderly age as very few amino acids are able to reach the systemic circulation.
In one study recently conducted and published, it was established that citrulline supplementation is one of the best mechanisms to increase protein synthesis as it is not taken up in the liver and not used up in the intestines. This finding is very promising as it paves the way for the development of a treatment plan for protein malnutrition among individuals with compromised protein levels.
Another interesting fact on the potential health effects of L-citrulline supplementation is its ability to improve reproductive system health. Health care experts say that by increasing nitric oxide levels, the compound is able to promote blood circulation towards the genital area during sexual engagement. Hence, it is believed that the compound may help support symptomatic treatment for individuals with erectile dysfunction.
Medical practitioners say, however, that the compound may work only for mild to moderate cases of erectile dysfunction.
Helps reduce fatigue and promotes endurance
Muscle fatigue is one of the most common problems which need to be addressed for effective workouts. It is believed that L-citrulline supplementation which increases nitric oxide in the blood is quite helpful in promoting nutrient and oxygen supply in the muscle areas during exercise. Thus, this mechanism effectively reduces fatigue and promotes endurance.
Generally, the recommended dose for L-citrulline supplementation is 3 to 6 grams per day. There are, however, experts who recommend the intake of up to 8 grams as this dose may be helpful in weight training.
Dosage for the said compound may vary depending on a person’s age, weight, and current medical status.