Nitric Oxide Deficiency

1 of the 12 leading causes of
high blood pressure, heart attacks and strokes

The Nobel Prize in Medicine was won in 1998 for the discovery of the role of Nitric Oxide as a signaling molecule in the cardiovascular system.

Why is nitric oxide so important?

Nitric oxide is produced by the endothelial cells that line your blood vessels. It plays a key role in regulating blood flow and blood pressure. When the endothelial cells are stimulated, they release nitric oxide, which relaxes the smooth muscle cells in the blood vessels, causing them to dilate (widen) and increases your blood flow. This process, known as vasodilation or widening of the arteries, is critical for maintaining proper blood flow to the heart and other organs.

In addition to its role in the cardiovascular system, nitric oxide also plays a key role in the immune system, where it helps to fight off infections and promote healing. It also plays a role in the nervous system, where it acts as a neurotransmitter and helps to regulate the activity of nerve cells.

Nitric oxide is also important in the treatment of certain medical conditions. For example, drugs that mimic the effects of nitric oxide, called nitric oxide donors, are used to treat conditions such as heart failure, hypertension, and erectile dysfunction.

At the age of 30 the amount of nitric oxide your body produces starts to drop off significantly!

Signs of nitric oxide deficiency

  1. Erectile dysfunction (men) or vasculogenic female sexual dysfunction (women) is a sign of not enough blood flow to the region. 
  2. High blood pressure, which normally follows sexual dysfunction.
  3. Gradually plaque build up in your arteries.
  4. You have a heart attack or stroke because the problem has not been corrected.

 

There is a very clear progression of cardiovascular disease as nitric oxide deficiency sets in. 

Health effects of nitric oxide deficiency

When you become deficient in nitric oxide the most obvious sign is heart disease and higher blood pressure, but your kidney, brain, and liver are all effected as well due to a lack of blood flow.

If your cells in your body are starved of oxygen and nutrients (normally provided by healthy blood flow) they become dysfunctional. 

Fortunately, you can help reverse nitric oxide deficiency through supplements

Prevention

Tikva has 10 nutrients that target nitric oxide deficiency

Below are clinical trials and research on these nutrients.

1. L- Arginine https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

Arginine aids in the creation of nitric oxide which helps to regulate your body’s blood pressure. Nitric oxide does this by relaxing your blood vessels to relax, causing them to widen and allow more blood flow. 

Researchers found that two grams a day of L-arginine ingested by mouth for one week caused close to a 20 point drop in systolic blood pressure.

Another study showed Compared with a placebo, L-arginine intervention significantly lowered systolic BP by 5.39 mm Hg and diastolic BP by 2.66 mm Hg with a duration starting at 4 weeks

Conclusions: This meta-analysis provides further evidence that oral L-arginine supplementation significantly lowers both systolic and diastolic BP.

2. Beetroot https://academic.oup.com

Beetroot is known for its richness in inorganic nitrates. Your body turns nitrate into nitric oxide, which causes your blood vessels to relax, thereby lowering blood pressure. 

One study showed in healthy participants that 24 hours after a single dose of 500 mL beetroot juice, systolic and diastolic BP were reduced by 10.4 and 8.0 mm Hg, respectively.

3. Pomegranate https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

In a study on Pomegranates antioxidant effects, scientists found that it helped protect nitric oxide from oxidative destruction.

Pomegranate is full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents that assist with functions pertaining to safeguarding the heart. Current trials have researched the effects consuming pomegranates have on men aged 39 – 68. 

When comparing the blood pressure measurements before and after the trial, there was a notable decrease in both systolic (7% decrease) and diastolic (6% decrease) blood pressure.

4. L-Carnitine https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

In a small clinical trial on young men, scientists investigated if L-carnitine supplementation would improve nitric oxide production and oxidative stress levels when the subjects were performing exhaustive exercise.

The results of the study provided an increase in antioxidant glutathione levels and nitric oxide levels and a decrease in lipid peroxidation which leads to cell death.

5. Vitamin C https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

In a recent study on Vitamin C, scientists observed enhanced nitric oxide production and reduced oxidative stress when taking Vitamin C with nitrates (from sources like arginine or beets).

Another study shows that long term Vitamin C supplementation increases vascular tetrahydrobiopterin levels which are an essential co-factor for amino acids to increases nitric oxide synthase activity.

Thus, adding Vitamin C to dietary nitrates  boosts nitric oxide bioavailability.

6. L-Taurine https://www.healthline.com

Studies have shown that Taurine supplementation improves nitric oxide bioavailability and there is a connection between increased levels of taurine and a significantly decreased death rate due to heart disease. Additionally, it was shown to reduce cholesterol and blood pressure.

Furthermore, findings have shown Taurine could help lower high blood pressure. It does this by lowering blood flow resistance in the blood vessel walls. It may also minimize nerve impulses in your brain that increase blood pressure.

A two-week study of participants with diabetes showed taurine supplements greatly decreased arterial stiffness. This could help make things a bit easier on the heart while it’s pumping blood across the body.  

Additionally, Taurine supplementation has been shown to decrease both inflammation and thickening of your arteries.

7. L-Theanine https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

L-Theanine is a naturally occurring amino acid that has been shown to promote nitric oxide production in endothelial cells and to improve mood and cognition

Researchers studied the effects of L-theanine in participants performing both mental tasks and physical activities under stressful conditions. In result, the study showed that in those whose blood pressure increased more than average, L-theanine greatly reduced increases to blood pressure compared to the placebo group. 

These findings demonstrate L-theanine both reduces anxiety and diminishes increases to blood-pressure in high-stress-response adults.

 

8. Inositol https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

In previous studies, Inositol has been shown to significantly enhance blood levels of arginine up to six hours post-dose and increase nitric oxide levels.

In A meta-analysis of 7 eligible randomized clinical trials demonstrated the significant decline in both systolic blood pressure 5.69mmHg and diastolic blood pressure 7.12mmHg following supplementation with inositol. 

 

9. Coenzyme Q10 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

In a study to see if blood vessels expanded when supplementing with CoQ10, they found a significant increase in flow mediation tests which show artery diameter. Nitric Oxide levels increased significantly and dose dependently while LDL oxidation lag time improved as well.

Coenzyme Q10 significantly made the imbalance of lipids such as total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), triglycerides, and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) better. This result was strongly related to the amount of nitric oxide that was available.

 

10. Alpha Lipoic Acid https://www.clevelandclinicwellness.com/

Alpha lipoic acid has been shown to improve nitric oxide artery widening and have beneficial effects on vascular dysfunction and oxidative stress in people with diabetes.

In addition alpha lipoic acid has been shown to improve endothelial dysfunction by decreasing inflammation and blood clotting mechanisms.