© 2018 by Sanford Severin, MD

Dr. Sanford L. Severin

San Ramon, CA 94582 USA


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The Story Of Nitric Oxide

April 23, 2019


Many of you possibly have  no idea of what nitric oxide is or what it does in the body. First of all do not confuse it with nitrous oxide a gas frequently used by dentists for anesthesia. 


Nitric oxide is of great importance to your health. In fact in 1998 a Nobel Prize was awarded to three scientists who discovered its vital role in your cardiovascular system. It helps keep blood vessels healthy and regulates blood pressure. It also supports the immune and nervous systems. 


Nitric oxide relaxes your blood vessels and keeps them flexible. It also has anti-inflammatory effects and helps prevent platelets and white blood cells from sticking to the lining of your blood vessels.


By the way nitric acid is the target of drugs such as Viagra. It helps relax blood vessels and smooth muscle in the penis, allowing for increased blood flow needed to initiate an erection. 


You can increase your nitric oxide level by eating vegetables such as beets and leafy greens. They contain nitrates which are converted in the body to nitrites and then to nitric oxide. You can also increase your nitric oxide level by taking arginine. It is used by the body to make nitric oxide. Some studies have suggested that arginine supplements can improve the function of blood vessels, enhance flow in the coronary arteries and possibly reduce angina. 


Some dietary supplements that claim to enhance sexual function claim to improve sexual performance and sex drive. This may or may not be true. Time will tell.

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