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Tag Archives: benefits of nitric oxide

  • Ingredient Explained: Citrulline

    What is it?

    L-citrulline is the natural form of citrulline. The human body produces its citrulline. However, consuming extra citrulline can have significant performance benefits. It is found naturally in fruits such as watermelon and vegetables such as squash and pumpkin. 

    What does it do?

    Citrulline enhances nitric-oxide levels, which allows for blood vessel dilation. This, in turn, allows for more oxygen and nutrients to be delivered to your muscles. Citrulline can also reduce symptoms of muscular fatigue. It plays a role in removing a fatigue-inducing compound called ammonia from your blood. 

    How do I take it?

    • Dosage

    6-9g is the recommended serving size of L-Citrulline Malate 2:1

    3-6g is the recommended serving size of pure L-Citrulline

    • Timing

    Citrulline typically takes 30-40 minutes to digest and enter the bloodstream. Therefore, to maximise its full benefits, it's a good idea to take it pre-workout.

    • Frequency

    There's no ideal frequency for citrulline. However, given the positive effects on performance, we recommend that you consume it before each workout session.

    What are the top products?

    We recommend that you find the best value for money citrulline malate product, i.e. look for a cost-effective price point! Just check the product's ingredient profile to ensure that it's 100% L-citrulline or L-citrulline malate.

  • Amazing Benefits of AAKG: Why You Need to Use AAKG

    In the supplement world, it can be very easy to feel overwhelmed. Stepping into a store or browsing online, you'll be provided with dozens of different categories and thousands of options. If you don't know what you want, then you could wind up with a lot that you don't need. This is why it's so important to look for those ingredients that have the most scientific backing. Arginine Alpha-Ketoglutarate is one of those tried and true supplements.


    More commonly abbreviated as AAKG, this L-Arginine-based ingredient can support a variety of fitness goals including performance, muscle growth, and nitric oxide production. Let's take a look at the benefits of AAKG and how it can help you achieve fitness success.


    Pre-Workout and Performance

    AAKG is commonly found within pre-workout supplements as it has been shown to enhance performance. A study in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition suggested that AAKG may be able to significantly improve intra-workout performance by supporting creatine production, improving blood flow, and boosting nitric oxide levels in the blood.


    This suggests that AAKG may be able to help you extend your total fatigue time while boosting strength output.


    Boost Nitric Oxide Levels

    Continuing with the idea of AAKG as a nitric oxide booster, studies show that higher levels of nitric oxide during your workout result in more intense pumps, better performance, and greater strength. The classic pump feeling is when the blood is pooling in the muscle and this will help support strength and muscle gains.


    Build More Muscle Mass

    A better workout with higher levels of nitric oxide may help to promote greater levels of muscle mass. Building lean muscle tissue requires that you maintain a specific intensity (65% to 75% of your 1RM), repetition range (8 to 12), and rest break timing (60 seconds).


    The result is muscle hypertrophy. Since AAKG may support your workout performance and energy levels, you're more likely to reach the variables needed for growth. What's more, AAKG has been suggested to be a potent recovery aid, promoting the healing of lean tissue.


    Make Your Own AAKG Supplement

    The problem with AAKG in supplement blends lies in the fact that it is usually under-dosed. In other words, the supplement blend will not contain enough AAKG to provide the reported benefits. This is why we recommend making your own supplement. In this way, you control the ingredients AND the amount per serving that you need to see the benefits of AAKG. You can create your own AAKG supplement by using the Amino Z Supplement Builder.


    Whether you only use Arginine Alpha-Ketoglutarate or you place it within a mix of other powerful ingredients, be sure to use between 2,000 and 2,500 mg, based on your physical activity level.


    Create your perfect supplement with the Amino Z Supplement Builder today!



    1. Willoughby DS, Boucher T, Reid J, Skelton G, Clark M. Effects of 7 days of arginine-alpha-ketoglutarate supplementation on blood flow, plasma L-arginine, nitric oxide metabolites, and asymmetric dimethyl arginine after resistance exercise. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2011 Aug;21(4):291-9.


    1. K. Hnia, J. Gayraud, G. Hugon, M. Ramonatxo, S. De La Porte, S. Matecki, et al. L-Arginine Decreases Inflammation and Modulates The Nuclear Factor-?b/Matrix Metalloproteinase Cascade In Mdx Muscle Fibers. Am J Pathol, 172 (6) (2008), pp. 1509-1519.


    1. B.I. Campbell, P.M. La Bounty, M. Roberts. The Ergogenic Potential of Arginine. J Int Soc Sports Nutr, 1 (2) (2004), pp. 35-38.
  • Top 3 Ingredients to Mix Together for an Insane Pump

    When you are working out in the gym, there's nothing like that intense feeling of the pump. When the blood starts pooling into the muscle and you watch as it swells, that is the highlight of the day for the most dedicated weight lifters.


    The pump is a sign that you're doing something right and there is evidence to back this up. When a muscle is placed under the right amount of stress, the pumped feeling you get is proof that the muscle is firing on all cylinders. When your goal is muscle mass, this is the feeling you strive for over and over again.


    Another way to support that feeling of the pump is by boosting nitric oxide production in the body. The best way to do that? Supplementation.


    Let's take a look at the top 3 ingredients you need to use to promote an insane pump and a boost in nitric oxide production.


    Agmatine Sulfate

    Agmatine Sulfate is derived from the amino acid, L-Arginine, and it is one of the most popular ingredients to be found in N.O. boosters and supplements that promote that pumped up feeling.


    Agmatine promotes blood flow in the body, which is the foundation of how it triggers several other benefits. By boosting blood flow, nutrients that support performance, recovery, and muscle building can reach their destinations faster.


    Most notably, Agmatine may be able to significantly boost nitric oxide production and promote an intense swole feeling in the working set muscle groups.


    Something else to note about Agmatine Sulfate is that it is an excellent post-workout supplement as it may alleviate inflammation and muscle soreness. (1-3)


    Citrulline Malate

    While it is not an essential amino acid, Citrulline Malate is commonly found in BCAA supplements because of the benefits it provides in relation to intra-workout performance and post-workout recovery.


    On its own, Citrulline Malate may be able to significantly improve intra-workout performance and this has been demonstrated time and time again in endurance-based studies. Taken post-workout, Citrulline has been suggested to help to alleviate muscle soreness.


    When Citrulline is combined with Agmatine Sulfate, the two form a powerful combination that promotes high level athletic performance and, most importantly, skyrockets that pumped up feeling that you chase during your workout. (1-5)


    Why spend hours trying to find the perfect supplement when you can create your own?

    With the Amino Z Supplement Builder, you can create your very own nitric oxide supplement to promote intense levels of pump and performance.


    Caffeine Anhydrous

    Last but not least is the famous Caffeine Anhydrous. Caffeine is one of the most widely used ingredients in the entire world. Whether you drink it via your coffee or you take it in a supplement form, Caffeine hosts a number of fitness-based benefits.


    Everyone knows about how Caffeine can increase your energy levels. Most people also notice a dramatic improvement in focus and alertness. This is the main reason people drink so much coffee.


    Caffeine is a powerful thermogenic that can support weight loss. It's also been suggested to support heart health while having no negative impact on diabetic users.


    When you put Caffeine together with Agmatine Sulfate and Citrulline Malate, you have an incredible pre-workout formula that will boost energy levels, kickstart nitric oxide production, and promote an insane pumped feeling. (1-8)



    When you want to feel that intense pump during your lifting session, you need the right workout program and the perfect supplement.


    You can try to find the ideal supplement in your local nutrition store but wouldn't it be easier to create your own using the best and most effective ingredients?


    With the Amino Z Supplement Builder, you can combine Caffeine together with Agmatine Sulfate and Citrulline Malate to create the perfect pumped up supplement. You can even add in a few more ingredients that are particular to your goals.


    Try the Amino Z Supplement Builder today!



    1. Gilad GM, Gilad VH. Long-term (5 years), high daily dosage of dietary agmatine--evidence of safety: a case report. J Med Food. 2014 Nov;17(11):1256-9. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2014.0026. Epub 2014 Sep 23.
    1. Aggarwal S, Shavalian B, Kim E, Rawls SM. Agmatine enhances cannabinoid action in the hot-plate assay of thermal nociception. Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2009 Oct;93(4):426-32. doi: 10.1016/j.pbb.2009.06.004. Epub 2009 Jun 16.
    1. Galea, E et al. 'Inhibition of Mammalian Nitric Oxide Synthases by Agmatine, an Endogenous Polyamine Formed by Decarboxylation of Arginine.' Biochemical Journal 316.Pt 1 (1996): 247–249. Print.
    1. Pérez-Guisado J, Jakeman PM. Citrulline malate enhances athletic anaerobic performance and relieves muscle soreness. J Strength Cond Res. 2010 May;24(5):1215-22. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181cb28e0.
    1. Suzuki T, Morita M, Kobayashi Y, Kamimura A. Oral L-citrulline supplementation enhances cycling time trial performance in healthy trained men: Double-blind randomized placebo-controlled 2-way crossover study. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition. 2016;13:6. doi:10.1186/s12970-016-0117-z.
    1. Acheson KJ, Zahorska-Markiewicz B, Pittet P, Anantharaman K, Jéquier E. Caffeine and coffee: their influence on metabolic rate and substrate utilization in normal weight and obese individuals. Am J Clin Nutr. 1980 May;33(5):989-97.
    1. Daniel Borota, Elizabeth Murray, Gizem Keceli, Allen Chang, Joseph M Watabe, Maria Ly, John P Toscano, & Michael A Yassa. Post-study caffeine administration enhances memory consolidation in humans. Nature Neuroscience 17, 201–203 (2014) doi:10.1038/nn.3623.

    8. David Furman, Junlei Chang, Lydia Lartigue, et al. Expression of specific inflammasome gene modules stratifies older individuals into two extreme clinical and immunological states. Nature Medicine 23, 174–184 (2017) doi:10.1038/nm.4267.

  • Nitric Oxide Supplements: Everything You Need to Know

    Think about the supplements you commonly use. There's a really good chance you have protein and a pre-workout sitting on the shelf in your kitchen. What about a nitric oxide booster? Have you even heard of this type of supplement?


    Nitric oxide boosters are primarily used by experienced lifters with a specific goal in mind. Bodybuilders, for example, may use nitric oxide boosters to achieve a better 'pump' and vascular gains. However, nitric oxide boosters may be appropriate for a number of health and fitness goals. Let's review what nitric oxide supplements are and how they may be able to help you achieve your ideal physique.


    What is Nitric Oxide?

    As soon as you see the term 'nitric oxide,' you may immediately think of the gas given to you at the dentist's office. Sure, that's one example but in this case of fitness, we are talking about a compound found within the body that may promote a number of different processes.


    In the case of exercise, the compound nitric oxide may support blood flow and oxygen delivery to skeletal muscle. Elevated levels of nitric oxide may also play a part in reducing inflammation, boosting recovery, and removing lactic acid build-up post-workout.


    How Do You Increase Nitric Oxide Levels?

    Exercise is hands-down the best way to naturally boost the body's nitric oxide levels; however, supplements are now being used to help as well. Nitric Oxide supplements contain proven ingredients that may trigger a spike in nitric oxide levels, thereby promoting a series of fitness-related benefits as mentioned above.


    What is a Nitric Oxide Supplement?

    A nitric oxide supplement, often referred to as an N.O. Booster, is made up of several compounds that may be able to naturally boost nitric oxide levels in the blood, if only for a short while.


    This temporary boost will help to support a number of benefits including the following:


    The Classic 'Pump'

    • Those using a quality N.O. Booster always report an increased 'pump' during exercise. This is when the blood swells in the working muscle, promoting a pumped-up feeling that may be accompanied by increased vascularity.


    Strength and Recovery

    • Some studies report that a quality nitric oxide booster may be able to boost blood flow and oxygen delivery to skeletal muscle. As a result, this may help promote more strength intra-workout followed by increased recovery post-workout.


    Lactic Acid and Inflammation

    • When using an N.O. Booster, you may experience less soreness. This is because increased levels of nitric oxide may support an enhanced removal of lactic acid, thereby, decreasing inflammation and soreness. (1-2)


    What are the Best Nitric Oxide Boosting Ingredients?

    There are hundreds of supplements but not all of them contain the proven ingredients that have been the subject of study and trials. The most popular and used N.O. boosting ingredients are the following:


    • L-Arginine
    • AAKG (Arginine Alpha-ketoglutarate)
    • L-Citrulline
    • L-Norvaline


    What are Some of the Best Brands of N.O. Boosters?

    Some of the bestselling and most widely used brands of N.O. Boosters include the following:


    • Primaforce AAKG
    • GAT JetFuse NOX
    • MAX's Lab Series Creobol


    Check out the full collection of nitric oxide supplements here.



    1. Bescós R, Sureda A, Tur JA, Pons A. The effect of nitric-oxide-related supplements on human performance. Sports Med. 2012 Feb 1;42(2):99-117.
    1. Álvares TS, Meirelles CM, Bhambhani YN, Paschoalin VM, Gomes PS. L-Arginine as a potential ergogenic aid in healthy subjects. Sports Med. 2011 Mar 1;41(3):233-48.
  • Cellucor CN3 vs. GAT Nitraflex

    Making the most out of your fitness routine may be a lot easier with the help of a pre-workout supplement. A pre-workout is a supplement taken before you hit the weights, track, or pool to help you increase your performance. Thus, you'll be cashing in on the maximum benefit from your exercise routine. While there are many pre-workout supplements out there, we are going to compare two of the most popular ones: Cellucor CN3 vs. GAT Nitraflex.


    Cellucor CN3

    Where can I buy it?

    • Here's where you can buy Cellucor CN3.


    Pros of Cellucor CN3

    Cellucor makes some of the best pre-workout products you'll find on the market and one of their most popular is CN3. It is made up of only two ingredients: 3 grams of Creatine Nitrate and 500 mg of Vitamin C. Together, this combination may be an effective way to boost nitric oxide levels for peak performance.


    If you're looking to build muscle or if your exercise regimen is made up largely of strength training, Cellucor CN3 may be very beneficial. This supplement is a Nitric Oxide Booster, also known as an N.O. Booster, and its primary function is to provide your muscles with oxygen and blood flow. The increased flow and pump of oxygen helps to boost performance during your workout. A side bonus is that insane vein-bulging 'pump' that many lifters report feeling. CN3 may be able to support gains in strength levels and intra-workout performance. (1)


    Cons of Cellucor CN3

    This is a straight-shooting product. It doesn't claim to be an insane pre-workout energy enhancer; rather, it's there to support nitric oxide and performance levels. The only downside to Cellucor CN3 may be the use of artificial flavours and sweeteners but other than that, you're getting a solid N.O. booster.



    GAT Nitraflex

    Where can I buy it?

    • Here's where you can GAT Nitraflex.


    Pros of GAT Nitraflex

    Nitraflex is an extremely potent pre-workout supplement by German American Technologies (GAT). The product enhances energy and strength alike while potentially supporting healthy testosterone production as well.


    Nitraflex includes 3 hard-hitting main ingredients: DMAE, Caffeine, and Beta Alanine. Together, these ingredients work to provide higher energy levels and a larger intra-workout pump. At 325 mg of Caffeine per serving, you'll never feel fatigue during or after your workout.


    The formula of Nitraflex hits your energy needs from all sides: you're getting hardcore stimulants along with nootropics for focus and even some thermogenics, which may support fat burning. All in all, this is an all-around great pre-workout to start your lifting session with. (2-4)


    Cons of GAT Nitraflex

    Downsides to Nitraflex are dependent upon how you react to stimulants. DMAE combined with Caffeine (not to mention the Rauwolscine you're getting) has been known to pack a powerful punch, especially if you don't tolerate stimulants well. You may want to assess your tolerance with half a serving then build up accordingly.


    Other than that, this pre-workout is going to be the one-two punch you need to kick away fatigue and get busy in the gym.


    Which One Should You Choose?

    Here's the thing: Both CN3 and Nitraflex are pre-workouts; however, they are in two radically different categories of pre-workouts. CN3 is a nitric oxide booster while Nitraflex is an energy amplifier and nootropic. The good news: You can (and should) use them together.



    1. Elfego Galvan, Dillon K. Walker, Sunday Y. Simbo, Ryan Dalton, Kyle Levers, Abigail O'Connor, Chelsea Goodenough, Nicholas D. Barringer, Mike Greenwood, Christopher Rasmussen, Stephen B. Smith, Steven E. Riechman, James D. Fluckey, Peter S. Murano, Conrad P. Earnest and Richard B. Kreider. Acute and chronic safety and efficacy of dose dependent creatine nitrate supplementation and exercise performance. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition201613:12. DOI: 10.1186/s12970-016-0124-0.
    1. Hobson RM, Saunders B, Ball G, Harris RC, Sale C. Effects of ?-alanine supplementation on exercise performance: a meta-analysis. Amino Acids. 2012 Jul;43(1):25-37. doi: 10.1007/s00726-011-1200-z. Epub 2012 Jan 24.
    1. Westerterp-Plantenga MS, Lejeune MP, Kovacs EM. Body weight loss and weight maintenance in relation to habitual caffeine intake and green tea supplementation. Obes Res. 2005 Jul;13(7):1195-204.
    1. Caille E.-J. Study concerning the bisorcate demanol effects upon quantified EEG, cortical vigilance and mood. Comparative double-blind, cross-over balanced design versus pirisudanol. Psychol Med. 1986;18:2069-2086.
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