The do’s and don’ts of arginine supplementation
AbstractIn the last three decades the nutritional and pharmacologic effects of arginine have been the subject of intense investigation. Taking into consideration the many benefits that have been demonstrated from arginine supplementation, the question remains: “Can we afford not to supplement with this immuno-nutrient”. The potential life-saving cardiovascular effects of arginine in both acute and chronic arginine supplementation has the ability to revolutionise the management of vascular disease, yet much more research must be done in this area. In addition, the proposed benefits of such supplementation in the sepsis model, makes arginine a very attractive model for decreasing the mortality statistics of this worldwide disease process. However, owing to the fact that arginine is a precursor for nitric oxide synthesis, the effects of which are potentially detrimental in the septic patient, further research is warranted in this field to determine the suitability of this agent in patient management.
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