Often found in muscle supplements, L-citrulline is a non-essential amino acid. It’s non-essential because L-citrulline isn’t necessarily an essential part of your diet. Because it is created naturally within the human body. However, illness and stress demand supplementation of L-citrulline, as your body may not be able to produce enough to rejuvenate.
Within the body, L-citrulline is converted into another amino acid called L-Arginine, as well as a chemical called nitric oxide. This conversion occurs within the kidneys, yet the change makes your entire body work better. All of these different compounds are essential for heart and heart-related health. And L-citrulline supplementation helps to boost your immune system, too!
Another way to boost your L-citrulline levels is to supplement with glutamine. Glutamine is an amino acid that is used to manufacture L-citrulline, among other things. Basically, L-citrulline deficiencies are unlikely to occur. However, if you train hard or you have recently undergone some kind of physical stress, you may need some extra L-citrulline to help you along.
How Does L-Citrulline Help With Muscle Support?
Once consumed, L-citrulline travels down to the kidneys where it’s filtered and transformed into L-arginine and nitric oxide. The nitric oxide helps your arteries to relax and widen, allowing them to work better in transporting oxygen and nutrients to your muscles and tissues. This improvement in blood flow can make building muscles faster, easier, and more efficient. Plus, the improved circulation also helps to hasten recovery time after training.
Other Reasons To Take L-Citrulline
Because this amino acid creates a better environment for optimal blood flow, it also is helpful in treating and preventing disease. And when your immune system is comprised, it is advised to supplement your body with certain amino acids. Your body simply heals faster when it has all the amino acids it needs to regenerate.
Conditions in which L-citrulline may help:
- Erectile dysfunction
- Celiac disease
- Liver disease
- Parkinson’s disease
There is also some evidence that L-citrulline is able to lower blood pressure in those with prehypertension. Prehypertension is usually known as the precursor to high blood pressure, which can even lead to heart disease. Almost any issue related to the heart can be improved upon with L-citrulline supplementation. However, always speak with your doctor before taking adding supplements to your diet.
Foods That Contain L-Citrulline
If you want to try and supplement your diet with foods that contain L-citrulline, there are a couple options. Watermelon is the richest source of L-citrulline, and cucumbers and other melons also contain a bit. Other options for L-citrulline include onions, garlic, legumes, fish, meat, nuts, and dark chocolate. So you have many options in order to boost your L-citrulline levels.
We understand that it’s not always easy to eat a healthy, balanced diet. And it may be even more difficult to ensure you’re eating enough different foods. In the cases where you don’t have time to cook, whether due to work stress, children, or other issues, supplementation is always an option. Although it is recommended that you obtain your nutrients through your diet. Only because your body absorbs nutrients better when the food is chewed, as well as in combination with other specific nutrients.