Is Citrulline a good supplement or not?
If you use pre-workout supplements, you probably have already seen this name on a label somewhere, as it is increasingly common to use this amino acid in these types of products.
But do you know what Citrulline is and what it does?
Most importantly ...it works?
That and much more is what you will learn in this guide.
What is Citrulline?
Citrulline is an amino acid, but it is rare to find this amino acid in food, and the one with the greatest presence is a fruit, more specifically watermelon.
When ingested, a large part is converted into Arginine in the kidneys, that is, you take Citrulline and it becomes Arginine.
Wouldn't it make more sense to supplement with Arginine then?
No, because Citrulline is more effective at increasing the levels of Arginine in the body than supplementing with Arginine. (4)
In addition to the increase in Arginine levels, Ornithine levels also increase.
What are the benefits of increasing the levels of these two amino acids?
Benefits of Citrulline
- Fatigue reduction and performance increase (1) (2) (7) (8) (9)
- Increased levels of nitric oxide (3)
- Reduction of post-workout pain (2)
- Possible increase in Growth Hormone levels (3)
These are the four main benefits for anyone who trains.
Citrulline has shown in several studies that not only reduces fatigue, but also increases performance, thus leading to better training.
In addition to better training, by increasing the levels of nitric oxide, you get a greater pump during training and vascularization, as well as possible benefits in the absorption of nutrients and better blood circulation.
The famous pains after leg training (and not only) are reduced with this type of supplementation, and when combined with exercise, supplementation with Citrulline increased the levels of Growth Hormone in relation to those who did not use this supplement after training.
Growth hormone plays a number of important roles, such as tissue repair.
The benefits are several, but the main highlight is undoubtedly the reduction of fatigue and improvement of performance, and this is where this supplement has more studies to demonstrate its effectiveness.
But after all, does it increase muscle mass? Burns fat?
As you may have noticed the benefits, it cannot be said that Citrulline increases muscle mass or decreases fat directly.
But, it can be said that it does it indirectly.
By reducing fatigue and improving performance, it will allow you to have more intense workouts, and if that's the goal, longer. With this you will be able to get more out of the training, and consequently have better results.
In addition to the effect on training, the reduction of post-workout pain, and the possible increase in growth hormone levels, contributes to muscle recovery and you will be able to recover more quickly from the training you do.
Finally, who doesn't like a bigger pump during training?
L-Citrulline or Citrulline Malate?
The two most common forms that you will find for sale this amino acid are L-Citrulline and Citrulline Malate.
Both are Citrulline, with only a small difference.
In the case of Citrulline Malate, Citrulline is combined with Malic Acid, which in theory, should lead to better results, especially in terms of energy.
Unfortunately, there are no studies comparing the two versions to see if there are really differences in practice, but most of the performance studies use the Citrulline Malate version, and it seems to be the safest bet to obtain the best results.
The dose is also slightly different for both versions.
How to take Citrulline?
Herein lies the big problem in supplementing this amino acid in pre-workout products.
Most supplements use doses that are too low.
The recommended dose for training benefits is 6g to 8g in the form of Citrulline Malate, about an hour before training.
In the case of L-Citrulline, the dose is lower, and should be between 3g to 5g.
Most supplements use doses much lower than this, and as such, the benefits are also lower, or nonexistent.
Where to buy?
If you are looking for Citrulline Malate, this option from Myprotein is a good bet.
On the other hand, you also have Bulk's offer that is not far behind in price/quality. Is available here in the form of Citrulline Malate.
And so that you don't run out of choices, you still have here the Biotech supplement of Citrulline Malate.
So is it worth it?
Citrulline has been gaining popularity, and with good reason.
Studies show that it is effective in reducing fatigue during training, and in improving performance, which is ideal in a pre-workout supplement.
In addition, it also has other interesting benefits for those looking for good results in the gym.
Is it a mandatory supplement?
But it is a very interesting supplement if you are looking for something to improve your workouts, and achieve better results.