COVID Strategy: Arginine and Nitric OxideAugust 31, 2020
COVID Strategy: Arginine and Nitric Oxide
This is an easy idea for you to implement and one that might be the most significant of all, surprisingly! Arginine is an amino acid you naturally make. It's there in you already. One of the uses your body makes of it, besides being one of the building blocks of protein, is to break off one of its Nitrogen side groups and use it to make Nitric Oxide. Nitric Oxide is a hugely important signaling messenger for many reasons. It makes blood vessels relax and calm down. It helps with men's erections. It helps in wound healing after surgery. But for now, the topic at hand is it prevents Corona Viruses from duplicating by some 87%. That was research on the SARS COVID virus, but the whole family is affected by arginine.
There are other indications. Nitric oxide is known to alter the spike protein on the COVID virus making it unable to attach to your ACE receptor. Hmm. African Americans are known to have less nitric oxide. That is thought to add to the increased incidence of high blood pressure in African Americans. What about increased morbidity from COVID?
In a normal diet in America, you get about 5 grams of arginine a day, with about 54 mg per gram of protein being the rule. If you have an infection, you want more. This might be a huge topic as much of the long-term morbidity of COVID might be the damage, scarring and ill effects that enhanced healing of those "internal wounds" might reverse.
This is obviously a hot topic and research on the fly is tricky. But it is being done. A good RCT is ongoing right now that should produce credible results. It is in asthma and only using 1 gm a day extra. I find that odd as it is only a small extra dose, and only in asthma.
Oh well. It is a food, not a dangerous drug so you can find it for yourself. You can actually give yourself the building blocks for arginine and make it yourself more effectively by taking its chemical sister, citrulline. Your kidneys actually have the enzyme that puts out the arginine and you can make it more evenly and effectively by taking advantage of that. Ditto with Glutamine. It is the amino acid that is the building block for you to make arginine.
www.What Will Work for Me. This is really cool. It's simple, basic viral biology and makes sense. The Arginine-Citrulline-Glutamine pathway is one of the most complicated and confusing in all of medical school chemistry pathways. There are so many circles, everyone got confused. But not to worry. A recent meeting of Functional Medicine doctors added the formula of Citrulline, 5 grams a day with 5 grams of glutamine as the easiest way to get more arginine and nitric oxide. Gradually increase the glutamine to 10 grams a day and you are all set. Now, I would add fish oil to that because of such positive effects on wound healing. It is my belief that the lingering, long-term damage from COVID is happening because there is dysfunctional scar tissue forming in organs that have been damaged by the COVID virus. We want those organs to heal. Again, just a food that is quite deficient in our diet.
References: Journal of Virology, MedPage, Amer Jr Phys Heart Circ, Adv in Wound Care, Clinical Trials, Science Direct, American Journal Clinical Nutrition, Pathways Common,
1. What is Arginine? Answer: an amino acid you use in making protein that you naturally get about 5 grams a day in food.
2. What is so special about arginine? Answer: Your body uses it to make Nitric Oxide which plays a huge role in wound healing and now, in COVID therapy.
3. Can you name one specific thing Nitric Oxide does to COVID? Answer: It messes up the spike protein's ability to bind to the ACE receptor.
4. Are you meant to take some every day to keep yourself primed against COVID? Answer: Yup
5. Ok, how do I do that - just repeat it and give me the bottom line? Answer: Order from Citrulline (an easier way of getting arginine) 5 grams a day, and Glutamine, 5 grams a day. At least have them on hand to start taking the second you think you might be ill. And throw in a gram of fish oil. That appears to add in synergistically. In fact, keep taking the fish oil year-round.