What kind of natural supplements will increase confidence

Arginine - an amino acid with potency?

What's behind the L-arginine advertisement?

Arginine is said to increase blood circulation and thereby improve erectile function: "For a significant increase in performance - even in bed", "More endurance plus a harder erection", "Against weak potency and to improve erectile function", "Arginine is a natural sexual enhancer" - the advertising for nutritional supplements with the amino acid L-arginine raises high hopes in men. Sometimes manufacturers make fun of them, like a product “for Santa Clauses” or “garden gnomes”, with which the applicable law should be circumvented.

Studies with very high doses of arginine showed an influence Vessels and blood pressure. As a medicinal product and in the hand of the doctor, L-arginine can possibly be helpful for very specific diseases of the blood vessels (arteriosclerosis). But whether it is Heart and circulation really protects, cannot be assessed due to a lack of meaningful studies.

Some clinical studies have shown beneficial effects of arginine mild and moderate erectile dysfunction. In such studies, the combined effect of arginine with drugs such as sildenafil or tadalafil or with plant substances is often examined, and the doses of arginine used are also different. Therefore, the study results are inconsistent and often contradictory.

L-arginine is not mentioned in the currently valid guidelines for doctors on the treatment options for erectile dysfunction, such as potency weakness or reduced erectile function.

Health claims for food supplements must be scientifically tested by the European Food Safety Authority EFSA and approved by the EU. There are no approved health claims for L-arginine in dietary supplements. Health benefits are often advertised using other added substances, such as selenium and zinc.

What should I look out for when using L-arginine products?

Instead of trusting the promises made about dietary supplements, the first thing you should do is see a doctor.

Erectile dysfunction can be an important clue to an underlying disease, such as narrowing of the blood vessels in the heart. Risk factors for cardiovascular diseases and potency weakness are little exercise, obesity, smoking and high cholesterol levels. A change in lifestyle often leads to a significant improvement in the erectile dysfunction.

You will find warnings for certain groups of people on L-arginine products from reputable manufacturers. For example, you should only use the product after consulting your doctor if you are being treated with blood-thinning drugs (e.g. Marcumar). L-arginine may only be taken with drugs that contain nitrates (e.g. amyl nitrite) or potency-increasing agents with (prescription) active ingredients such as sildenafil, only after consultation with a doctor. If you have already suffered a heart attack, you should not use it at all.

In addition to apparently completely natural ingredients such as L-arginine and plant extracts, undeclared drugs in sexual enhancers from the Internet are unfortunately not uncommon. You can e.g. B. contain non-specified prescription medicinal substances such as the PDE-5 inhibitors sildenafil or tadalafil or unapproved chemical substances with a similar structure such as sulfoaildenafil. Several food control offices therefore strongly advise against ordering sexual enhancers over the Internet.

What is L-arginine?

L-arginine is one of the nitrogen-rich amino acids. It is one of the conditionally indispensable (semi-essential) amino acids, i.e. the body can produce it itself, but this amount is not always sufficient in certain situations. With a balanced, mixed diet, you will be consuming an estimated 5 to 6 grams of arginine per day.

Arginine is essential for the body to make nitric oxide. Numerous studies have shown that nitric oxide dilates blood vessels and lowers blood pressure. If not enough arginine is available, it can lead to circulatory disorders, high blood pressure and erectile dysfunction. However, it has not yet been sufficiently clarified whether an increased supply of arginine can reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, for example, or rectify erectile dysfunction.

A real undersupply of L-arginine is not known. Only in certain diseases, such as high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes, is less L-arginine produced in the body. A balanced diet can usually provide enough L-arginine to compensate for this.

Which ingredients are still contained in L-arginine products?

Vitamins and minerals are also used in many products that contain L-arginine. These substances are then advertised with (permitted) statements that are indirectly related to potency and sexual performance. This could be, for example, "Vitamin B2, B6, B12 and iron - contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue" or "Vitamin C, magnesium and iron - contributes to a normal energy metabolism". The minerals zinc and selenium may be touted with a "contribution to normal testosterone levels" or "to normal sperm formation".

Often caffeine or guarana are contained as a caffeinated plant. The amount of caffeine can be as much as one or two cups of coffee. Caffeine is known to have a blood circulation-promoting effect.

Exotic plants such as common raspberry, sea beans or sand mallow are not traditional food plants in the European Union and are not approved as components of food supplements.

You should always expect undeclared drugs in sexual enhancers from the Internet, even if they are offered as dietary supplements.

  • In the case of potency weakness, the causes should be clarified with a doctor.
  • The body can produce L-arginine itself. Those who eat a varied diet also consume sufficient protein and thus all important amino acids, including L-arginine.
  • Very good sources are nuts, legumes, soy, corn, rice, beef and pork.
  • Prescription-free and effective against circulatory disorders: plenty of sport and exercise!


Zabel M (2011): Erectile dysfunction in patients with cardiovascular diseases: indications of a disturbed relationship between L-arginine and ADMA, dissertation for obtaining the doctoral degree in medicine from the University of Hamburg, Hamburg

Deutsche Apotheker Zeitung: Penis, Pump, Prostate - Which Supplements Do Men Really Need? DAZ 2019, No. 13, page 57.

Deutsche Apotheker Zeitung: Man is himself - is there a sensible self-medication for erectile dysfunction? DAZ 2018, No. 27, p.30.

Rhim HC, Kim MS, Park YJ, Choi WS, Park HK, Kim HG, Kim A, Paick SH: The Potential Role of Arginine Supplements on Erectile Dysfunction: A Systemic Review and Meta-Analysis, Journal of Sexual Medicine. 2019 Feb; 16 (2): 223-234.

Good pills - bad pills: Adulterated: Lethal products from the Internet; 2020/01 p. 27

Investigations by the State Investigation Office of Rhineland-Palatinate: Dangerous sexual enhancers from the Internet. (accessed: December 3, 2020)

Haensch C.-A. et al., Diagnosis and Therapy of Erectile Dysfunction, S1 Guideline, 2018; in: German Society for Neurology (ed.), guidelines for diagnostics and therapy in neurology. Online: www.dgn.org/leitlinien (accessed on December 3, 2020).

Manus I, topic: Erectile dysfunction: causes and treatment, Apotheken-Umschau, 11.11.2019

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medicine transparent / Cochrane Austria: Arginine: Protection of the heart and circulation not proven. Last updated: June 30, 2020, (accessed on December 4, 2020)


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Test of sexual enhancers - these drugs can help - Stiftung Warentest

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