Amino Acids that Promote Growth

Ornithine

What Is Ornithine?

This is one of the amino acids that promote growth which is derived from arginine. Large quantities of which have successfully raised growth hormone levels in some studies. Bucci, et al, studied the effect of 40, 100 and 170 mg/kg of L-ornithine HCl on 12 bodybuilders. Twenty- five percent of the subjects experienced significant increases in serum growth hormone levels at the two lower doses. In the other hand, half the subjects illustrated an increase in growth hormone at the highest dose.

Arginine

What Is Arginine?

Arginine is an semi-essential amino acid and is present in the proteins of all life forms.  It is classified as a conditionally essential or semi-essential amino acid because under normal conditions the body can produce sufficient quantities of amino acid arginine to meet physiological demands.  However, in times of stress conditions such as wound healing and trauma, the body might not be able to manufacture enough. In these cases, amino acid arginine becomes essential and is very important to ensure sufficient dietary intake of the amino acid to meet the increased physiological demands shaped by these conditions.

What Does L-Arginine Do?

Arginine although not an essential amino acid, is a vital one. In addition to contributing in protein synthesis, it plays a number of other important roles in the body. Arginine’s primary function entails the metabolism of proteins and nitrogen.  It also detoxifies ammonia formed during nitrogen catabolism of amino acids through the formation of urea.  It is also a forerunner in the formation of polyamines, creatine, nitric oxide, proline, glutamate, agmatin, and the arginine-containing tetrapeptide tuftsin which is believed to be an immunomodulator.  Arginine is also a glycogenic amino acid.  If needed by the body, it can be converted to D-glucose and glycogen or can be catabolized to manufacture biological energy.

Arginine when taken in high doses stimulates pituitary release of growth hormones, prolactin and pancreatic release of glucagon and insulin.  It is also used as an immunonutrient in parenteral and enteral nutrition to aid improvement of the immune status of those suffering from burns, sepsis, and trauma.

L-Arginine Rich Foods

Arginine is predominately manufactured in the kidney.  It is a main intermediary in the Krebs-Henseleit urea cycle.  A much smaller amount of this amino acid is synthesized in the liver.  The normal dietary intake of arginine is 3.5 to 5 grams daily and most dietary arginine comes from animal and plant proteins. Arginine of small amounts can be found in vegetable juices and fermented foods, such as yogurt and miso.  Plant proteins such as soy proteins and other plant proteins are richer in arginine than animal proteins which are richer in lycine.  Arginine can also be found in dairy products, meat, poultry, nuts, fish, and chocolate. Other natural sources of arginine are brown rice, raisins, popcorn, and whole-wheat products.

Benefits of L-Arginine

Arginine has a maximum potential in preventing or reducing cardiovascular diseases, by stimulating a compound that relaxes the blood vessels called nitric oxide.  It is also used to enhance memory, eliminate depression, improve sleep, control stress, prevent aging, relieve arthritis, manage allergies, promote hair growth, cure impotence, fight cancer, reduce herpes, combat fatigue, and stimulate the immune system. The normal supplemental dosage of arginine per day is 2 to 8 grams.

Does  L-Arginine Help Muscle Growth?

Investigated in numerous studies with conflicting results, this is one of the amino acids that promote growth. Take for example, in one study, 6 subjects were given 6 grams of arginine. They all experienced a 100% increase in plasma levels without any growth hormone release. Other researchers administered it to 12 young and 5 elderly non-obese adults, all of whom had a body mass of less than 30. The subjects participated in three trials: resistive weight-lifting exercise with no placebo, 5 grams of arginine supplementation prior to exercise and 5 grams of oral L-arginine only.

Lysine

What Is Lysine?

Lysine is an essential amino acid which is vital to human health but cannot be synthesized by the human body.  This is the reason why amino acid lysine must be obtained from your food diet.  Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins and proteins are greatly needed by the body for muscle growth.  Lysine plays an important role in the production of a nutrient that is responsible for converting fatty acids into energy and helps lower cholesterol.

What Does Lysine Do?

Lysine also shows to help the body in absorbing and conserving calcium.  It also plays a vital role in the formation of collagen, an important substance for the bones and connective tissues that includes the skin, cartilage and tendon.

Insufficient lysine in the diet may cause health problems such as kidney stones that may develop other health problems including loss of appetite, nausea, dizziness, fatigue, agitation, slow growth, anemia, reproductive disorders, and bloodshot eyes.  However, it is very rare to get insufficient amounts of lysine through the daily diet. Lysine deficiency would normally only apply to vegetarians and certain athletes who are in frequent vigorous exercise.  Vegetarians would get the best source of lysine in legumes such as peas, lentils, and beans.

In foods such as pastries, cookies, doughnuts, and cereals, the browning reaction involves lysine.  In this process of lysine and sugar being combined makes it in a way difficult for the body to absorb lysine, resulting to low lysine intake in cereals and baked goods diet. Good food sources of lysine are those foods rich in protein which includes meat, cheese, nuts, eggs, certain fish, soybeans, fenugreek seed, and spirulina.

What Is Lysine Used For?

Lysine can be used in the treatment of genital and mouth lesions caused by herpes simplex virus as well as shingles caused by herpes zoster viruses. Lysine supplements taken can speed up recovery time and reduce the possibility of repeated breakouts of the herpes infection.  Amino acid lysine also improves the absorption of calcium from the digestive tract and avoids loss of calcium in the urine, which some researchers have speculated that bone loss associated with osteoporosis can be prevented through the help of lysine.  In studies where lysine has been combined with arginine showed that it increases the activity of bone-building cells and improves production of collagen.

Some forms of lysine or lysine bound to anti-inflammatory medications may help ease pain following an episiotomy, a medical procedure performed during labor that is a procedure of cutting the vaginal area to enlarge the vaginal opening and facilitate delivery.  Lysine of these forms may also relieve painful periods and migraine headaches.

How Much Lysine To Take

Most people need about 1 gram of lysine per day. For athletes and people recovering from major injuries such as burns may be required a greater amount.

Does Lysine Promote Muscle Growth?

One of the amino acids that promote growth, lysine may work to release growth hormone. In a study of 15 healthy male subjects, there was a
separate consumption of lysine as single nutrients did not significantly increase growth hormone compared to the baseline. In another study of normal young males, oral administration of 1,200 milligrams of L-lysine did not raise serum growth hormone levels.

Glycine

What Is Glycine?

Glycine is a protein amino acid that can be found in the protein of all life forms and is important in the body’s construction of proteins. Glycine is the simplest amino acid in the body that is not optically active. In contrast to other amino acids, glycine can be found in both enzymes and proteins.  Although glycine is found mostly in proteins, glycine is also found in plants.  It is estimated that the normal diet should include two grams of glycine daily.

What Does Glycine Do?

Since amino acid glycine can be sufficiently produced by the body to meet physiological requirements, it is considered a nonessential amino acid.  However, it is of key importance in the synthesis of proteins, purines, peptides, nucleic acids, porphyrins, hemoglobin, creatine, glucose, one-carbon fragments, L-serine, adenosine triphosphate (ATP), and other amino acids.

Amino acid Glycine performs as an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain and spinal cord.  It plays vital roles in the method of prevention for muscular degeneration, repair of damaged tissues located throughout the body, and improvement of glycogen storage.  Glycine is an important amino acid because if needed, it will synthesize and convert from serine and threonine to fulfill its physiological processes.

Glycine is a solid water-soluble substance that has a sweetish taste and is also known as amino acetic acid, glycocoll, sucre de gelatine, and aminoethanolic acid.  Its one-letter abbreviation when spelling out protein structures is G and its IUPAC abbreviation is Gly.

Glycine Rich Foods

Glycine Rich Foods

Glycine can also be found in natural food sources.  Natural food sources containing high amounts of glycine includes fish, beans, dairy products, and meats.  Here are food sources of glycine that are based on a serving size of 100 g and the amount of glycine contained is expressed in milligrams:

Vegetable Products

  • Seaweed, spirulina (dried) 3100 mg

Nut and Seed Products

  • Seeds, cottonseed meal (partially defatted, glandless) 2380 mg
  • Seeds, sunflower seed flour (partially defatted) 3080 mg
  • Seeds, sesame flour (low-fat) 3430 mg
  • Seeds, pumpkin and squash seed kernels (roasted without salt) 2410 mg

Legume Products

  • Soy protein concentrate (produced by alcohol extraction) 2690 mg
  • Peanut flour (defatted) 3150 mg
  • Soy protein isolate (potassium type) 3600mg
  • Soy protein concentrate (produced by acid wash) 2690 mg
  • Soy protein isolate 3600 mg

Shellfish and Finfish Products

  • Fish, cod, Atlantic (dried and salted) 3010 mg

Poultry Products

  • Chicken, broilers or fryers, skin only (cooked, roasted) 3250 mg
  • Turkey, all classes, skin only (cooked, roasted) 3140mg
  • Turkey, young tom, skin only (cooked, roasted) 3210 mg

Beef Products

  • Beef, cured, breakfast strips (cooked) 2610 mg

Pork Products

  • Pork, fresh, variety meats and by-products, ears, frozen (Cooked, simmered) 3140 mg
  • Pork, fresh, variety meats and by-products, ears, frozen (raw) 4400 mg

Veal, Lamb, and Game Products

  • Veal, variety meats and by-products, liver (cooked, braised calf liver) 2290 mg

Luncheon Meats and Sausages

  • Beef, cured, corned beef, canned 2260 mg

Egg and Dairy Products

  • Egg, white (dried) 2840 mg

Snacks

  • Snacks, pork skins (plain) 11900 mg

Sweets

  • Gelatins, dry powder (unsweetened) 19100 mg

Beverages

  • Gelatin, drinking, orange flavor (powder) 9670 mg

Does Glycine Promote Muscle Growth?

It may be the non- essentials but this is also one of the amino acids that promote growth. Glycine is contained in gelatin protein and is an important component of collagen. Although much of the early research revolved around its ability to increase strength in athletes, more recent studies have documented that it can indeed raise growth hormone levels in humans. As a matter of fact, researchers have concluded that the explanation why it has been found to increase muscle strength in many studies may be the result of its growth-hormone-boosting capabilities.

Glutamine

What Is Glutamine?

Glutamine is an amino acid that allows for improved immune system and brain function, balanced blood sugar levels, digestive tract health, and increased muscle mass.

What Is Glutamine Used For?

Glutamine is used as fuel for immune system and intestinal cellular replication. Maintaining the proper levels of glutamine supports immune system activity while strengthening the intestinal lining. In addition to this, glutamine is important to replenishing glycogen (stored energy) in muscle tissue, and maintaining muscle mass and strength.

Glutamine also plays an important role in maintaining healthy brain function as a source of energy for the nervous system, a key factor in the production of brain neurotransmitters, and an ammonia detoxifier.

Does Glutamine Promote Muscle Growth?

An abundant protein block- builder, this is one of the amino acids that promote growth. Glutamine is the most copious in human muscle and plasma. It directly regulates both the production and wearing-down of protein and immune cell activity. When about nine healthy subjects consumed two grams of oral glutamine 45 minutes after a light breakfast, there were eight out of the nine that subjects experienced elevated plasma growth hormone within 90 minutes. These findings demonstrate, the study authors wrote, that a surprisingly small oral glutamine load is capable of elevating hormones for development.

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