Found abundantly in foods such as salmon, eggs and nuts, arginine is an amino acid – a building block for protein. Christoffer Clemmensen, from the University of Copenhangen, and colleagues subjected lean and obese animal models to a glucose tolerance test, which measures the body’s ability to remove glucose from the blood over time. Both groups benefited from arginine suppmentation, which boosted glucose metabolism by as much as 40%. Further, the researchers found that arginine increased the production of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), an intestinal hormone which plays an important role in regulating appetite and glucose metabolism. Submitting that: “these findings identify l-arginine as a GLP-1 secretagogue in vivo and demonstrate that improvement of glucose tolerance by oral l-arginine depends on GLP-1R-signaling,” the study authors propose that: “These findings raise the intriguing possibility that l-arginine-based nutritional and/or pharmaceutical therapies may benefit glucose tolerance by improving the postprandial GLP-1 response in obese individuals.”
Clemmensen C, Smajilovic S, Smith EP, Woods SC, Brauner-Osborne H, Seeley RJ, D'Alessio DA, Ryan KK. “Oral L-arginine Stimulates GLP-1 Secretion to Improve Glucose Tolerance in Male Mice.” Endocrinology. 2013 Aug 19.
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