Bodybuilders have long been using nitric oxide supplements to improve their results. In the last two decades, several products have been introduced to the market aimed at boosting circulation, immunity and recovery. It should be noted that you will not find this compound listed in the rundown of ingredients. Instead, there will be several amino acids included as well as other substances that assist in its creation inside the body. Once ingested, these amino acids will be broken down by enzymes in such a way as to release nitric oxide. This gas will then mix with blood and get circulated around the body.
What Happens When We Take Nitric Oxide Supplements?
NO2 supplement intake causes the dilation of blood vessels. Thanks to this, blood flow improves throughout the body. The oxygen and nutrients inside the blood can then reach various parts that need them more quickly and in larger amounts. This allows us to push our body harder during training as the muscles get everything they need to work optimally. The onset of fatigue is delayed so we can do more repetitions or go longer than before. Once we’re done, the recovery time required in much shorter so we can bounce back right away without fear of injuries.
The Unwanted Side Effects of Nitric Oxide Supplement
While the desirable effects are truly remarkable, users are still advised to be cautious in ingesting these supplements. They can produce side effects like any other substance depending on the dosage and the state of the individual. The good news is that the majority of the known effects are rather tame. They can fizzle out quite quickly such that people can enjoy the benefits without too much hassle. However, others can truly cause concern. Let’s look at each of them in detail and see how they can be minimized.
1. Digestive Issues
This is the most common complaint among NO2 users. Arginine, the preferred amino acid in nitric oxide supplements, is known to cause gastrointestinal distress. The vast majority of the population should be able to ingest the pills without any complaints. However, the rest may suffer from stomach pain, diarrhea an bloating. These can be irritating to say the least. It is up to each individual to determine if the inconveniences are worth the benefits. They can get worse with an increase in dosage so be sure to consume only as instructed. Look at the label to see whether you can take the pills on an empty stomach or not.
2. Zinc Deficiency
There are certain compounds present even in the best nitric oxide supplements which are known to create nutrient imbalances. For instance, histidine and carnosine can trigger zinc deficiency. This can be a problem because the mineral is an essential part of good overall health. A lack of it may lead to impotence, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and a delay in sexual maturity. Impotence is particularly worrisome for many. If you truly must continue with the supplementation and are worried about this negative effect, then simply add more zinc to your diet. Peanuts, crabs, oysters, and pumpkin seeds are just some of the food rich in this nutrient.
3. Blood Pressure Fluctuation
We have already pointed out that NO2 has the capacity to dilate the blood vessels. This inevitably has an effect on blood pressure which is reduced due to the larger pathways. This is a good thing if you have a high blood pressure to begin with. Things will shift nearer to the normal values. On the other hand, those who are already dealing with a low pressure level will find themselves having further difficulties. Some people report a feeling of lethargy because of a drop in energy. Others complain of chest pain and difficulty while breathing. Avoid this supplement if you have hypotension.
4. Lower Dopamine
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is essential for our well-being. It is unfortunate that the supplement inhibits dopamine transporters. This drastically lowers the uptake which spells trouble for the regulation of our sleep cycles, memory, cognitive skills, and motivation levels. Note that this doesn’t happen often but when it does, the effect can be quite significant. People can naturally counteract the fall by producing more dopamine via physical activities. Follow a regular training routine as you will create more of it on a daily basis. Even walking is good enough. Taking tyrosine can also help in proper doses.
5. Frequent Urination
One irritating consequence of this supplement is having the urge to urinate more frequently than normal. The liver can’t handle all of the excess arginine in the body and has to resort to expelling it through pee. The excretion can occur at any time of the day, sometimes at the most inconvenient hours. It can be an annoying thing especially if there are no toilets in the vicinity when it happens. The dosage of arginine should be limited to under 5,000 mg per day to prevent this from happening. This is roughly four servings of the best nitric oxide supplement.