Summary of Nitric Oxide (NO)

The human body can not heal until you restore the production of Nitric Oxide 

Nitric Oxide is a gas signalling molecule

There are two Nitric Oxide production pathways;

1. There is an enzyme in the lining of the blood vessels that converts L-Arginine into Nitric Oxide. This pathway becomes dysfunctional with age causing age related disease e.g. metabolic syndrome where there is high blood sugars [diabetes], high cholesterol and high blood pressure

2. Nitric Oxide is made from a dietary pathway. Foods plus bacteria in the mouth and gut creates Nitric Oxide

Inorganic Nitrate found in green leafy vegetables are metabolised by oral and gastrointestinal bacteria which is disrupted by antimicrobial mouth washes, antibiotics and anti acid medications, non steroidal anti inflammatories (NSAID’s). This causes blood pressure to rise and counteracts exercise benefits to cardiac health.

Nitrates mostly [85%] come from green leafy vegetables.

Nitrates are converted to Nitrites by oral bacteria. When combined with HCL acid in the stomach Nitric Oxide gas is produced which then kills H. Pylori infections in the stomach which can inhibit gastric ulcerations from NSAID use, increase gastric mucosal blood flow and nutrient absorption from food.

Only 5% of Nitrate converts to nitrite so 300-400mg of nitrate per meal is needed.

2/3 of Americans have high BP and 1/3 of Americans use a mouth wash every morning. 200 million use antacids which inhibit NO production.

Taking Antacids for 3-5 years causes 35% higher risk of heart attacks and strokes. 

Green leafy vegetables reduces blood pressure by increasing nitrates in the diet.

Mouth wash increases blood pressure

Periodontal disease or gingivitis or cavities or infected root canals creates less good bacteria in the mouth so less NO production

More leafy greens creates more bacteria that then convert nitrate to nitrites

Nitrogen may be depleted in some soils which determines the level of nitrates in the food. Organic food may be low because of the low use of nitrogen fertilisers used in organic farms.

Nitrate is required for assimilation of other nutrients into plants and vegetables e.g. selenium and chromium may be therefore low in our food supply.

Nitrate is involved in many more process;

  1. Vaso dilation which opens blood vessels increasing oxygen and nutrient delivery and manages blood pressure.
  2. Less NO means less insulin signalling reducing glucose uptake into the cell creating type 2 diabetes and subsequent cardiovascular disease.
  3. NO is produced in the body to kill bacteria, viruses and fungal infections.
  4. NO is a neuro transmitter. Lack of NO leads to poor neurological function, dementia, Alzheimer’s dx and poor cognition.
  5. Baby’s fed breastmilk have better immunologic function, better developmental function than formula fed babies because of nitrates in breast milk.
  6. NO gas vasodilates and normalises BP, improves exercise performance, reduces numbers of blood vessel plaques, better circulation and heart function.
  7. NO Reduces Metabolic syndrome ie lowers high BP, lowers cholesterol and lowers high blood sugars, lowers triglycerides, cholesterol, fasting glucose, insulin and Blood pressure improves
  8. Improves sleep, sexual function, creates more energy and enables you to exercise longer.

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