What is L-lysine?
L-lysine is an essential amino acid, meaning that it is one of eight amino acids that cannot be produced by the human body by itself and instead must be produced through the dietary intake of proteins. It is a necessary component of all protein in the body, and not only plays a role in building muscle protein but it also plays a large role in the body’s absorption of calcium, its formation of collagen, and its production of antibodies, hormones, and enzymes. L-lysine plays a role in the body producing the amino acid carnitine and those that obtain too little of it may experience fatigue, nausea, dizziness, kidney stones, and other symptoms. Most people with a balanced diet including the essential amino acids are at little risk of obtaining too little L-lysine, though diets high in cereals, baked goods, and simple sugars may be chemically prone to deficient intake of absorbable L-lysine given the amino acid’s reaction to the sugar.
What are the health benefits of L-lysine?
L-lysine may be used to treat symptoms of the herpes simplex virus, and its role in aiding the body’s absorption of calcium may help prevent bone loss associated with osteoporosis. Other conditions for which L-lysine is used include chronic fatigue syndrome and viral conditions such as warts. There is also a possibility that L-lysine can help with the treatment of cancer.
What foods are good sources of L-lysine?
L-lysine may be found in red meat, pork, poultry, cheese, certain fish, eggs, soybeans, nuts, certain beans like black beans and kidney beans, lentils, and spinach. L-lysine is also available as a supplement as tablets, capsules, and liquids.
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