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What is citrulline?

L-citrulline, along with L-arginine and L-ornithine, is one of the three dietary amino acids involved in the urea cycle. L-citrulline enhances the ammonia recycling mechanism and nitric oxide metabolism by increasing plasma levels of ornithine and arginine. As a result, it’s employed in nitric oxide-related fields including sports performance, vascular health, and erectile dysfunction. Only a few foods contain significant quantities of citrulline, with watermelon being one of them.

What are citrulline’s benefits?

In general, evidence shows that prolonged citrulline intake reduces blood pressure and improves blood flow, especially in those with hypertension and other cardiovascular issues. For both aerobic and anaerobic activity, limited evidence shows an increase in power production, a reduction in fatigue, and better endurance. Many of the trials employed acute citrulline supplementation, and while there may be an impact there, chronic supplementation is more likely to provide advantages. More research is needed for erectile dysfunction, however a limited amount of evidence suggests a positive impact. Because arginine raises arginine levels and citrulline increases arginine levels, it’s possible that it’s also helpful for this reason.

What are the disadvantages and adverse effects of citrulline?

It doesn’t appear to have any significant adverse effects, but further study is needed to prove its long-term safety in large dosages. Unlike L-arginine and L-ornithine, very high dosages of this amino acid do not appear to cause gastrointestinal distress.

Is it preferable to take arginine or citrulline?

Citrulline appears to result in greater and more constant arginine levels than arginine, according to some study. Citrulline is easily converted to arginine when needed, and it is also better absorbed than arginine, making it not only a superior supply of arginine for the body, but also a less likely source of gastrointestinal distress when taken in high levels.

What is citrulline malate?

Citrulline bonded to malate, an organic salt of malic acid and a citric acid cycle intermediate. It is the most studied form of citrulline, and there is suspicion that malate has an independent role in performance improvements, although there isn’t enough data to directly compare citrulline malate to L-citrulline. Citrulline malate can be consumed at the doses used in research, but keep in mind that 1.76 g of citrulline malate is required to produce 1 g of citrulline.

How to take

Take 2,000 mg of citrulline three times a day with meals to complement L-citrulline for circulatory health or to relieve erectile dysfunction, for a total daily dosage of 6,000 mg. However, L-citrulline does not have to be taken with food.

When using a citrulline malate supplement for circulatory health, take 1.76 g of citrulline malate for every 1 gram of citrulline you typically consume.

Take 6,000–8,000 mg of citrulline malate approximately an hour before exercise to complement L-citrulline and improve sports performance. It can be divided into smaller dosages on days when you don’t exercise.

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