What is nitric oxide and how does it play a role in bodybuilding? Well, some people think that it is a compound that makes us laugh at the dentist’s clinic. Others think that it’s a kind of fuel that is used to speed up cars. In fact, it is neither of the two. It is a signaling molecule, which is produced in the human body that helps about 50 trillion cells to communicate with each other.
It has been shown to play a significant role in several cellular activities including memory and behavior, body immune system, reduction of inflammation, improvement of sleep quality, endurance and strength, etc., to name only a few. One of the common ways to increase the concentration of this molecule in the body is through exercise. While working out, body muscles need more oxygen, which is supplied with blood.
The heart pumps with high pressure to supply sufficient blood to the muscles; the lining of the arteries releases this molecule into the blood in order to relax and widen the vessel wall and thus allows more blood to pass through.
However, with age, blood vessels and nitric oxide systems become inefficient due to the accretion of free radicals, poor diet, etc., causing veins and arteries to deteriorate. It thus plays a significant role in bodybuilding. Those who regularly hit the gym need this molecule in sufficient amount. It helps in supplying the sufficient amount of blood flow to the tissues and therefore, allows smooth muscles to relax. It, therefore, increases the stamina of an individual and helps in achieving the goal.
Another most important role that the molecule plays is with fatigue. For example, if a person feels that fatigue is a limiting factor in his or her workout, it is the right time to get this supplement. While lifting weights, body muscles get stretched and rapidly begin to run out of oxygen. When this happens, body muscles in the absence of sufficient oxygen start to get lactic acid buildup, which then generate a high-level of fatigue.
Nitric oxide acts as a muscle cell signaling molecule responsible for flowing sufficient blood to muscles. Besides, it also helps in regulating body temperature during a hard workout session. During workout, body temperature increases and the body tries its best to cool the tissues. This process can be enhanced by increasing the blood flows in the body. Since the molecule helps increase the blood flow in the body, it directly or indirectly helps in body temperature regulation as well.
Increasing nitric oxide supply to the body has become one of the secret weapons for bodybuilders and athletes. Supplements are easily available on the market. Another way to increase its concentration in the body is through diet. Food containing amino acids such as L-arginine and L-Citrulline play important role in producing nitric oxide naturally in the body.
There are several sources of arginine such as nuts, fruits, meats, and dairy products. Enzymes are involved in converting Citrulline to arginine and vice versa. These enzymes can be protected by consuming healthy food and antioxidants such as fruits, garlic, vitamin C, etc. Hit the gym regularly without stress.