Arginine, Asparagines, and Aspartic Acid


Arginine is a standard amino acid that can by synthesized in your body from ornithine. (Arginine can also be synthesized into ornithine). Some bodybuilders take arginine supplements because it increases muscle mass while decreasing body fat. However, it is also involved in a number of essential bodily functions, described below.

Functions of Arginine in your body

• Builds muscle
• Decreases platelet stickiness, lowering risk of unhealthy blood clots
• Enhances fat metabolism
• Enhances immune function
• Helps wound heal
• Important for gut health
• Increases circulation
• Increases human growth hormone (HGH) production
• Increases immune function by increasing natural killer cell activity
• Increases perm count
• Inhibits plaque accumulation in your arteries
• Needed for protein production
• Reduces pain from claudication (poor circulation)
• Used to produce nitric oxide
• Vital for secretion of glucagon and insulin

Symptoms of Arginine Deficiency

Coma, Constipation, Fatty liver, Hair loss and breakage, Hepatic cirrhosis, Poor wound healing and Skin rash.

Side Effects and Contraindications

• Diarrhea
• Increase in outbreaks of herpes simplex infections (cold sores or genital herpes. The addition of the amino acid lysine to your supplementation program can limit this effect).
• Nausea
• Tightness in chest or throat

Food Sources of Arginine

Asparagus, Avocados, Beans, Brewer’s yeast, Broccoli, Chocolate, Corn, Dairy products, Eggs, Fish, Green peas, Legumes, Meat, Nuts, Oatmeal, Onion, Popcorn, Potatoes, Raisins, Seafood, Seeds, Sesame seeds, Soy, Spinach, Sunflower seeds, Swiss chard, Whey, and Whole grains


Asparagines, a standard amino acid involved in making protein, is nonessential because it can be synthesized in your body. It is synthesized form aspartic acid and adenosine triphosphate. When necessary, your body can convert asparagines back into aspartic acid.

Functions of Asparagine in your body

• Forms part of DNA
• Helps ammonia detoxify
• Helps protect the liver
• Metabolizes carbohydrates via the Krebs cycle (which produces energy)
• Promotes mineral uptake in the intestinal tract
• Transport nitrogen

Food sources of Asparagine

Asparagus, Cheese, Chicken, Dairy product, Pork, Potatoes, Sausage, Turkey and Wheat germ

Aspartic Acid

Aspartic acid is an amino acid as well as an excitatory neurotransmitter. It is made in the body from glutamic acid and requires the presence of B6. Aspartic acid is a nonessential amino acid so it is not necessary to seek it out in supplements or diet. Instead, some people have elevated levels, which can lead to the problems listed below.

Functions of Aspartic Acid

• Forms part of DNA
• Involved in metabolism of ammonia
• Involved in urea cycle
• May play a role in the immune system
• May encourage endurance
• Metabolizes carbohydrates via the Krebs cycle
• Necessary for brain health
• Necessary for the production of glucose

Symptoms of Aspartic Acid Toxicity – Depression, Epilepsy, and Stroke

Food sources of Aspartic Acid

Beef, Chicken, Cottage cheese, Fish, Pork, Ricotta cheese, Sausage, Turkey, and Wheat germ

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