L-Ornithine is an amino acid that has been used by fitness enthusiasts for years. L-Ornithine is a non-essential amino acid and is manufactured by the body. Since the body can produce ornithine, a deficiency of this non-essential amino acid is rare and it is abundant in protein foods such as meat, fish, dairy, and eggs.
L-ornithine is a basic amino acid and is important in the formation of urea. It is a nonprotein amino acid which means that it does not occur in proteins. The body uses it in the biosynthesis of L-arginine, L-proline and polyamines.
L-ornithine is sometimes used as a nutritional supplement for its putative anabolic activity, even though there is little evidence to support this. However, there is a derivative of L-ornithine called ornithine alpha-ketoglutarate or OKG which, under certain conditions, may have immunomodulatory and anticatabolic and/or anabolic actions.
Ornithine is important since it:
Induces the release of growth hormone in the body, which in turn helps with fat metabolism. It is required for a properly functioning immune system and liver. It assists in ammonia detoxification and liver rejuvenation. It helps healing and repairing skin and tissue and is found in both these body parts. Unsupported claims that ornithine promotes muscle building, but this has not been proven. It is helpful for people recouping after surgery and athletes may benefit from this nutrient
The liver and immune system require ornithine to function properly. It assists in ammonia detoxification. Athletes may also benefit from this nutrient.
** may be very helpful if you are trying to lose fat. It is important because it initiates the release of growth hormone in the body. This can be very helpful with fat metabolism.
Women who are pregnant or nursing should avoid L-ornithine supplementation. Gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, abdominal cramps and diarrhea may occur with doses higher than 10 grams daily.
Normally, people who use L-ornithine take a dose 500 milligrams to 2 grams, before bedtime and on an empty stomach. Some people combine L-ornithine with similar doses of L-arginine.
Are there any side effects or interactions?
No side effects have been reported with the use of ornithine, except for gastrointestinal distress with intakes over 10 grams per day.
The presence of arginine is needed to produce ornithine in the body, so higher levels of this amino acid should increase ornithine production.
At the time of writing, there were no well-known drug interactions with ornithine.