by Collin Stark January 03, 2022 5 min read
When you think of nitric oxide (NO), what do you think of?
There's a good chance you might think of the dentist’s office? The thing is, they actually use nitrous oxide, instead of nitric oxide.
Nitric oxide is something completely different, and although you may be familiar with getting "laughing gas" when you’re at the dentist ... there's a good chance you’ll like improving your nitric oxide levels, once you learn a bit more about it.
In this article, we’ll talk about what nitric oxide is, its benefits, and how to increase your NO levels.
Nitric oxide is a chemical compound that may sound complicated.
But actually, the compound is not that complicated at all. It’s just one molecule of nitrogen and one molecule of oxygen.
That’s why it’s also known as nitrogen monoxide or NO. What makes NO complicated is the good and bad effects it has on the world.
For example, nitric oxide is a free radical, meaning it’s missing an electron in its outermost ring.
Free radicals are oftentimes highly reactive (they work quickly) and short-lived (they don’t last long). Nitric oxide is also a common pollutant found in our upper atmosphere which causes certain CAIR-related problems.
That said, NO IS far from all bad ... in fact, in many cases, it can actually be very beneficial.
In human bodies, nitric oxide is incredibly important. It’s what’s known as a vasodilator, which means NO loosens the inner muscles, which helps to improve vascular blood flow.
This gives blood better access to your entire body.
The more blood your muscles have access to, the more oxygen and nutrients they have. The more oxygen they have, the more work they can do before feeling tired.
And the more work they can do before feeling tired, the more you can get out of your workouts.
That said, simply pumping out a few extra reps per workout is NOT where the benefits of nitric oxide end.
So, what are the main benefits of nitric oxide? In this article, we’ll talk about five major benefits of having this NO molecule in your system.
The benefits of nitric oxide have been shown to help:
• Decrease muscle soreness
• Lower blood pressure
• Boost exercise performance
• Support healthy male performance
Now, let’s talk about these benefits in detail.
As your muscles run out of oxygen, they begin sending signals to the brain that they’re tired. This results in feelings of discomfort, fatigue, and soreness.
These feelings will linger to one degree or another until your muscles have sufficiently recovered and have replenished their nutritional stores.
There’s evidence that NO can help reduce this soreness and discomfort by giving your muscles more access to blood and the cellular nutrition it contains.
First off, if you have blood pressure issues, always consult with your doctor first before using NO supplementation. Do not try to treat blood pressure issues with a nitric oxide supplement.
That said, when using a NO supplement ... since your inner muscles are loosened due to the NO in your system, you may notice a slight dip in your average blood pressure.
In people with regular to high blood pressure, this is either a net-neutral to net-positive effect, especially if you’re working out and really getting your blood pumping.
This, in turn, has been shown to lower blood pressure for healthy individuals.
Since your muscles are getting more oxygen than they would normally get, you may notice that you can exert more energy for longer periods of time with increased NO levels.
With that, if you are looking to pack on lean muscle and grow larger muscles through hypertrophy training, increasing your NO levels can help shuttle more blood into the muscle group(s) being trained.
This helps get a much better pump and can increase your results.
Imagine the compounding effects of getting even a small percentage more out of each workout.
Compound those effects over a whole year, and the difference can be pretty drastic!
When it comes to the bedroom, there can be a few different factors contributing to a lack of performance ... one of those being blood flow.
So, focusing on things that can increase NO levels in the blood can help out with circulation ... which can, in some cases, help increase blood flow as needed!
Your body naturally produces nitric oxide, but there are steps you can take to increase your nitric oxide levels.
You can increase your NO levels by:
• Boosting your antioxidant intake
• Eating nitrate-rich foods
• Taking a nitric oxide supplement
Now, let’s talk about these in detail.
We mentioned that nitric oxide is a type of free radical. Now, when it comes to other free radicals, they can lower nitric oxide levels in the body.
By increasing your antioxidant intake, you can help regulate those harmful free radicals. This will allow you to maintain higher NO levels in the body.
Exercise can help get your body to start producing its stores of nitric oxide.
So, if you’re wanting to get more NO into your system, simply start moving.
This will make your body start sending signals to your brain that it needs more oxygen and blood, so your brain will respond accordingly.
There are plenty of foods out there that are rich in nitrates.
The more nitrates you consume, the more oxygen will bond with nitric oxide.
The more those molecules bond, the more NO you’ll have in your diet.
Nitrate-rich foods include:
Basically, we’re giving you another good reason to have a salad for lunch!
This seems obvious, but there are plenty of NO supplements on the market.
Like any other supplement, they’re designed to help your body’s natural production, or your diet’s normal levels of a given substance.
In this case, nitric oxide supplements can help boost your NO levels.
When looking for an NO-boosting supplement, look for something that has Agmatine, L-Citrulline, and L-Arginine, along with other beneficial ingredients in the right amount to help boost your NO levels the most.
These ingredients can be used by the body and converted into nitric oxide, as well as helping with vasodilation (the relaxation of blood vessels), which can help even more with blood flow and circulation.
One of them is AlphaSurge, which is a stimulant-free vasodilator, and can be taken any time of the day. Plus, with 3 delicious flavors ... you can find the best option for you!
Another one is Project-1, which is a full-body pre-workout that can help you during intense weight lifting sessions. Keep in mind, this product does contain caffeine to give you a boost for a workout.
The third and final product is AlphaSurge DRV, which can help with volumizing your cells and improving nutrient delivery to the muscle cells. As a result, it can lead to incredible pumps during your training!
Your lifestyle, goals of increasing Nitric Oxide levels, and health goals will determine which is the right product for you, and when you would take them.
Each of these can help improve blood and oxygen flow, as well as nutrient delivery to your muscles, allowing you to do more work for longer. These can be a great addition to a plan, right along with Opti-Greens 50 and Opti-Reds 50.
Combine these with proper nutrition and recovery to maximize your efforts. So you can earn the results you are wanting!
If you have any questions about the different products or how to best use them, give us a call at 1-800-409-9732 and talk to a real human right here at 1st Phorm HQ in St. Louis, MO, Monday thru Friday, 6am to 10pm CST.
NASM Certified Personal Trainer NASM Fitness Nutrition Specialist NASM Certified Nutrition Coach