8 Grams of Citrulline Bodybuilder’s Performance
by: Robbie Durand
Nitric oxide (NO) is a key molecular and cellular messenger in the body that, among other biological processes, is used to increase blood flow in the body through dilation of blood vessels. Arginine, a precursor to NO, has long been the standard means of triggering increased production of NO in the body. The new research suggests citrulline may be a more effective way of elevating arginine levels and NO in the body. L-citrulline is a naturally occurring amino acid found in food, such as watermelons, and also made in the body. L-citrulline might help increase the supply of ingredients the body needs to making certain proteins. It might also help open up veins and arteries to improve blood flow and reduce blood pressure. L-Citrulline is used as a sports performance and cardiovascular health supplement. L-Citrulline supplementation results in reduced fatigue and improved endurance for both aerobic and anaerobic prolonged exercise.
L-Citrulline is an amino acid that supports Arginine and Nitric Oxide concentrations, ultimately assisting in the regulation of blood flow and muscular endurance. A new study recently just reported that 8 grams of citrulline a day increases leg performance in experienced weight lifters. Researchers has experienced weight lifters take citrulline malate before performing submaximal repeated bouts of multiple lower-body resistance exercises would improve performance. Twelve advanced resistance-trained male subjects participated in a randomized, counterbalanced, double-blind study. Subjects were randomly assigned to placebo (PL) or citrulline malate (8 g) groups and then performed repeated bouts of multiple lower-body resistance exercise 60 minutes before the workout. Specifically, subjects performed 5 sequential sets (60% 1 repetition maximum) to failure on the leg press, hack squat, and leg extension machines. Blood lactate, heart rate, systolic blood pressure, and diastolic blood pressure were determined before and after exercise. The exercise protocol resulted in sequential significant decrease in the number of repetitions in all 3 exercises. However, subjects in the citrulline malate group performed significantly higher number of repetitions during all 3 exercises compared with PL group. Blood lactate and heart rate were significantly increased after exercise compared with before exercise but were not significantly different between citrulline malate and PL. No significant differences were detected for blood pressure measurements. In conclusion, our results suggest that citrulline malate supplementation may be beneficial in improving exercise performance during lower-body multiple-bout resistance exercise in advanced resistance-trained men.
Wax, Benjamin, et al. “Effects of Supplemental Citrulline Malate Ingestion During Repeated Bouts of Lower-body Exercise in Advanced Weight Lifters.” The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research (2014).