What is it? How can it help me?
L-arginine is a naturally occurring amino acid that may help to increase blood flow (in some populations) and anabolic growth-hormone secretion. This helps increase lean muscle mass/strength/power, promotes faster recovery from exercise, and improves the work capacity of active muscles.
L-arginine also improves the process of clearing waste products from your muscles. This may result in a reduced sense of fatigue.
When do I use it?
L-arginine should be consumed as part of your post-exercise recovery, which should begin within 30 minutes of finishing your workout. Some people like to take arginine in the pre-exercise period (30-60 min before exercise).
How much do I need?
The amount of L-arginine needed to increase anabolic growth-hormone secretion and improve muscle recovery is at least 6 grams as part of your post-workout recovery. The typical American diet only provides about 5.5 grams of L-arginine during an entire day.
More helpful information
L-arginine functions as a precursor to nitric oxide, a potent vasodilator that allows increased blood flow. L-arginine is also involved in the synthesis of urea, a waste product produced by the body. Urea is synthesized in the liver and is ultimately excreted by the kidneys in the urine.