What is L-Proline/L-Lysine?
Proline and lysine (another one of the amino acids that is important to protein synthesis) are both needed to make hydroxyproline and hydroxylysine, two amino acids that form collagen.
Collagen helps to heal cartilage and to cushion the joints and vertebrae. For this reason, proline supplementation may prove beneficial for treatment of conditions such as osteoarthritis, persistent soft tissue strains, and chronic back pain.
Proline is an amino acid needed for the production of collagen and cartilage. It keeps muscles and joints flexible and helps reduce sagging and wrinkling that accompany UV exposure and normal aging of the skin.
Proline helps the body break down proteins for use in creating healthy cells in the body. It is absolutely essential to the development and maintenance of healthy skin and connective tissues, especially at the site of traumatic tissue injury.
The body needs proline to maintain muscle tissue as well. Decreases in proline levels have been noted in prolonged endurance runners and others following prolonged exercise.
Serious athletes that subject their body to routine, rigorous workouts may want to take a supplement containing proline in order to avoid loosing muscle mass—the body begins to cannibalize its muscle for energy when glucose supplies run low. Proline is a nonessential amino acid. The body makes proline from glutamic acid, and deficiency is rare in healthy individuals with a healthy diet.
However, people recovering from traumatic injury, particularly skin injuries such as severe burns, may want to supplement this amino acid. People with pain caused by insufficient cartilage or collagen formation could benefit from extra proline in their diet as well.
Meat, dairy, and eggs are the best natural sources of proline; vegetarians or those with a low-protein diet should seriously consider a combination amino acid supplement containing, among other amino acids, proline.
Proline supplements are available in stand-alone capsules and tablets, but this amino acid is also often included in supplements marketed for treatment of specific conditions, such as herpes (in combination with lysine), arthritis, or back pain, or in supplements or sports drinks marketed for body builders and athletes. Proline may be in supplements used to promote cardiovascular health, usually in combination with vitamin C.
The recommended therapeutic dose is between 500 milligrams and 1,000 milligrams daily, in combination with vitamin C. People with liver or kidney disease should not take this or any other amino acid supplement without first consulting their physician. Getting too much of any one amino acid can throw the citric acid cycle out of balance, which makes the liver and kidneys work harder to eliminate toxins.
Lysine is an essential amino acid that is well known for its antiviral properties. It helps prevent outbreaks of herpes and cold sores, and is needed for hormone production and the growth and maintenance of bones in both children and adults.
Lysine is involved in the production off antibodies for a strong, healthy immune system, which may be part of the reason it is so effective at fighting herpes viruses.
Lysine also helps prevent the body’s absorption of the amino acid arginine, which the herpes virus must have in order to replicate. Studies have shown that taking supplemental L-lysine in combination with vitamin C and flavonoids can effectively fight and/or prevent herpes outbreaks.
Results of a six-month trial involving more than 50 people indicate that lysine is far more effective than a placebo in preventing cold sores. Lysine supplements have also been used to prevent eruptions of shingles, a blistering condition that is caused by the herpes varicella-zoster. Lysine also helps herpes and cold sores heal more quickly.
This amino acid promotes the formation of both collagen and muscle protein, and may help speed recovery from surgery and sports injuries as well.
Lysine is one of the essential amino acids, which means it cannot be manufactured in the body and must be obtained from dietary sources. Good sources of lysine include cheese, eggs, fish, lima beans, milk, potatoes, red meat, soy products, and yeast.
Most people get enough lysine from their diet, but there have been recorded cases of lysine deficiency, particularly in those that have a low-protein diet or eating disorder. A lysine deficiency may include symptoms of bloodshot eyes, hair loss, an inability to concentrate, irritability, lack of energy, poor appetite, reproductive disorders, retarded growth, and weight loss.
People suffering from conditions caused by any form of herpes virus may benefit greatly from lysine supplementation, but should first consult their healthcare professional—most nutritionally oriented physicians will combine lysine therapy with conventional antiviral medications such as acyclovir or valacyclovir.
Lysine supplements are available in stand-alone supplements or in combination supplements, particularly those marketed for treatment of herpes outbreaks. It comes in tablet, capsule, powder, and liquid forms. The usual dose is 500 to 1000 milligrams each day in capsules, although those with herpes generally take as much as 6 grams each day to control their symptoms.
Doses of more than 10 grams each day may cause stomach cramps or diarrhea. In very large doses (10 to 30 grams a day), lysine increases the toxicity of aminoglycoside antibiotics, such as gentamicin, neomycin, and streptomycin.
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