If anyone remembers working out in the 90’s and 2000’s, you also remember the flood of supplements that hit store shelves. If there was a substance that had even a remote chance of improving your athletic performance then someone would throw it into a pill, slap a label on it, and you’d be able to find it at GNC. Thankfully almost all of these fly-by-night supplements have found themselves on the way out, leaving a handful of supplements that actually perform how they claim to. One of these supplements, and one of our personal favorites, is L-Citrulline Malate (at a 2:1 ratio of L-Citrulline to Malate). Today we are going to discuss the ins-and-outs of L-Citrulline Malate and how to best make it work for you, so let’s get into it!
What is L-Citrulline Malate?
L-Citrulline Malate is composed of two different compounds: L-Citrulline, which is a non-essential amino acid, and Malate which is simply the salt of malic acid. Both substances have an impact on your body's natural ability to produce energy, either through ATP production or by the result of your body's natural ability to produce Nitric Oxide. The claim is that combined they produce an increase in athletic performance and recovery far greater than what the compounds can produce individually. Naturally, this supplement has become a staple for bodybuilding, powerlifters, and athletes at all levels of competition.
How should I take L-Citrulline Malate?
For purposes of improving athletic performance, recovery, and endurance, it’s recommended that you take 7 grams of L-Citrulline Malate roughly 45 minutes to an hour before your workout.a
How is L-Citrulline Malate different from L-Citrulline?
While they work great together, L-Citrulline and Malate serve different, yet complementary purposes.
L-Citrulline increases your blood plasma levels of Arginine, which your body then uses as a means to improve Nitric Oxide production. This is what normally gives people the “pump” feeling during an anaerobic workout. Increasing Nitric Oxide in the blood will allow you to work out harder and more intensely, and it also increases the blood flow to the muscles that need it most while working out.
Malate, as mentioned above, is malic acid salt -- which when taken can improve your body's natural ATP process, which is also known as the “Krebs Cycle”. If you were to take a L-Citrulline without the Malate, you would lose the extra benefits your body would gain from an increased and more efficient ATP production. ATP is short for Adenosine triphosphate, and is CRITICAL for giving the body sufficient energy to perform high intensity strength training. The better your ATP production, the harder and longer you can workout which ultimately means more gains down for you.
Are there any side effects from supplement L-Citrulline Malate?
As long as you stay within recommended dosages there are virtually no side effects. Some users report an upset stomach after taking their first few doses but this disappears over time and in general is considered a rare side effect.
L-Citrulline is a fine supplement on it’s own, and the science shows that it works. The science also shows that L-Citrulline Malate is more productive from an athletic energy standpoint than just L-Citrulline on its own. Beyond that, it is known for several other positive health effects as well. It can increase your blood flow, decrease problems related to blood pressure, can help with erectile dysfunction, improves muscle oxygenation, and much more. Beyond that, it’s one of the only substances on the market that can really do what it claims. For these reasons and more, L-Citrulline Malate is one of our favorite supplements and it’s something we take before every single workout.