Experts describe anxiety as an emotion where people express fear, worry, and nervousness about certain events in their lives. While this is a normal emotion, there are also anxiety disorders. They are characterized by being too afraid or nervous about something without a justified reason.
Repetitive problems with anxiousness could mean it is time to give this issue your attention. If it is serious, you can try talking to your doctor. They might recommend medications or supplements that could assist in providing anxiety relief.
Food supplements that aim at lowering anxiety and promoting peace of mind usually contain nutrients. Those include vitamins and minerals, but also amino acids like arginine. Let’s take a look at how arginine could help you with anxiety and promoting a positive mood.
What You Should Know About L-Arginine
L-Arginine belongs to amino acids that are considered as semi-essential. The compound plays a role in producing nitric oxide by acting as a substrate. Immune and endothelial cells produce NO, which plays a crucial role in optimal immunity and blood pressure management.
You can consume arginine by eating food sources containing this amino acid. The most abundant choices include turkey and chicken, but also pork loin. Soybeans, lentils, and chickpeas have a high quantity of arginine. You can also find this amino acid in dairy, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, and spirulina.
Arginine is a vasodilator. That means this amino acid dilates blood vessels. That is why it is a popular choice in numerous supplements and medications that aim at lowering blood pressure. It is also why males consider taking arginine to deal with erectile dysfunction.
Research Study 1 (Arginine & Anxiety)
Science has been discussing the potential benefits arginine could have for anxiety for a long time now. A systematic review of using herbal and nutritional supplements for treating anxiety was published in the Nutrition Journal in 2010.
The review included studies on various ingredients used in supplements that provide anxiety relief. The list includes passionflower and other herbal compounds, but also lysine and arginine.
If we are talking about using L-arginine for providing anxiety relief and experiencing a peace of mind, you will frequently find it combined with lysine in studies.
Multiple trials have tested the combination of these two amino acids and their anxiolytic properties.
Research Study 2 (Arginine & Anxiety)
A study that involved 29 adult participants was conducted in 2005 in Slovakia. The participants were close to exceeding the standard range of the scale for measuring trait anxiety. The researchers asked them to consume a mixture of arginine and lysine daily for ten days. Following this administration, the scientists conducted a stress test.
The results indicated that this amino acid mixture exhibits anxiolytic characteristics.
The researchers point out that lysine and arginine could alter the human body’s response to stress my adjusting hormonal production in stressful situations.
Research Study 3 (Arginine & Anxiety)
Another study conducted in Japan in 2007 also discussed the effectiveness of oral supplementation with these two amino acids. Arginine and lysine were administered at doses of 2.64 grams daily to 108 Japanese adults. These participants were healthy, and the duration of the study was seven days.
According to the results, lysine and arginine can decrease state and trait anxiety in both males and females. The researchers also found that cortisol levels in the participants' saliva were lower.
Since cortisol is the hormone that releases stress, it could be a confirmation of arginine's assistance in stressful situations. It can help manage stress better, which promotes peace of mind and helps users avoid anxiety.
Research Study 4 (Arginine & Anxiety & Stress)
Apart from studies based on human subjects, arginine was also a part of the research that focused on animals. A study published in 2003 aimed to discover whether arginine-lysine combination could help manage anxiety induced by stress. The subjects were rats, and the researchers used the elevated plus-maze as a test to determine the results.
The researchers picked male rats who were given a mixture of lysine and arginine, and a combination of lysine and glutamine. The administration of amino acids took four days, and the scientists exhibited the rats to stress on the fifth day. Following that stress, they used the elevated plus-maze test to see the results.
Rats who have received arginine-lysine mixture spent more time exploring the EPM and had lower levels of plasma corticosterone induced by stress. Due to those results, the scientists concluded that the combination of lysine and arginine could decrease anxiety in rats put under stress.
Research Study 5 (Arginine & Stress)
A different study whose results were revealed in 2003 focused on pigs. The researchers put 16 pigs on a diet that contained a high intake of arginine and lysine. These pigs were all male, and they were divided into two groups for comparison sake. The administration of arginine and lysine took seven days. The pigs were subjected to transportation, which induces stress in these animals.
According to the results, animals that were on the arginine diet have handled the transportation stress better.
The research showed a reduction in the quantity of plasma cortisol, which is probably why these pigs felt less stress during transportation.
Arginine has some very compelling evidence for its ability to help relieve stress and anxiety symptoms.
If you feel under stress and experience anxiety frequently, a potent supplement might be able to help. A large number of anxiety-fighting supplements that promote peace of mind include arginine in their formula. As you can see, arginine might be most effective when combined with lysine.