L-ornithine is an amino acid produced from the interaction of the amino acid L-arginine to the enzyme arginase. L-ornithine is considered a “non-protein” amino acid, meaning it is not a direct constituent of protein structures in the body. It is also a “non-essential” amino acid, which the body can produce on its own from L-arginine. L-ornithine is critically involved in the production of urea, the by-product of protein metabolism used for eliminating toxins like nitrogen and ammonia away from the body. Another important function of L-ornithine is the synthesis of the amino acids proline, citrulline, and glutamic acid.
The body needs 5-10 grams of L-ornithine dosage every day. According to research, the average western diet can supply this recommended L-ornithine dosage. Although it may seem that the body is getting enough L-ornithine supply, some may have special needs for this non-essential amino acid.
- L-ornithine is the most potent amino acid in stimulating the production and release of the Growth Hormone (GH). GH is essential for normal growth and development of children. In adults, Growth Hormone is needed to balance the body’s fat and muscle ratio.
- Its effects on growth hormone production make L-ornithine a powerful rejuvenator. L-ornithine use has been linked to youthful vitality and energy.
- L-ornithine supplements are among the famous body building supplements in the market. This amino acid helps increase the production of insulin and growth hormone, two compounds essential in building and maintaining strong muscles for intensive exercises.
- L-ornithine benefits the elderly by fighting muscle loss. Muscle loss associated with ageing is due to the decreased protein synthesis and reduced muscle tissue repair.
- L-ornithine helps in the treatment of liver cirrhosis and preventing its complications. This non-essential amino acid has potent detoxification properties which reduces the work load of the liver. Specifically, L-ornithine helps the liver eliminate ammonia to help prevent hepatic encephalopathy.
- L-ornithine boosts energy and performance. The energy and performance boosting effects of L-ornithine is due to its role as a precursor to the amino acids citrulline, proline, and glutamic acid, which supplies energy to the cells.
- L-ornithine supplements cause the thymus glands to re-grow for stronger immune functions. The thymus is a gland located in the upper portion of the chest that produces the killer T-cells of the immune system.
- L-ornithine is medically prescribed for burns, trauma, and post surgery for faster tissue healing and recovery. Clinical experts have observed improved appetite and strength in patients taking L-ornithine.
L-Ornithine Side Effects
When taken more than its recommended dosage of 5-10 grams per day, L-ornithine supplements can cause gastrointestinal distress. Aside from this, no other L-ornithine side effects have been reported. There is also no known adverse effect of drug interactions with L-ornithine. However, L-arginine supplements help maximise L-ornithine benefits for the body.