Supplement Forms/Alternate Names

  • L-Arginine

Introduction

Arginine is an amino acid found in the body. It has been taken to lower blood pressure, improve heart function, and increase sex drive. Arginine can be taken as a pill or powder. Arginine can also be applied as a paste. It has been used to ease tooth sensitivity.

Dosages

2 to 10 grams once daily

What Research Shows

Likely Effective

  • Dentin hypersensitivity—likely to reduce symptoms and ease sensitivity when used as a paste C1
  • High blood pressure —likely to lower blood pressure D1, D2
  • Pre-eclampsia —likely to lower blood pressure G1, G2

May Be Effective

  • Necrotising enterocolitis—may prevent in preterm infants F1, F2

May Not Be Effective

  • Athletic performance—may not enhance athletic performance or improve recovery from exhaustion B1

Unlikely to Be Effective

  • Acute myocardial infarction—unlikely to improve outcomes A1

Not Enough Data to Assess

  • Hip and knee replacement support E1

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Safety Notes

It is likely safe to use arginine and to take it orally for a short time. Not enough studies have been done to say whether it is safe to use for a long period. It is also not known whether it is safe to take by women who are breastfeeding.

Interactions

Talk to your doctor about any alternative therapy or supplements you are taking to make sure it does not interfere with your current treatment. For example:

  • People who have had a heart attack should talk to their doctors before taking arginine. It may worsen symptoms.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: EBSCO NAT Review Board Eric Hurwitz, DC
  • Review Date: 07/2019 -
  • Update Date: 02/05/2020 -