Human growth hormone, or HGH, is produced by the pituitary gland and supports the growth of cells throughout the body. Levels of HGH are highest in childhood, as the body experiences its greatest growth, and begin to decline in young adulthood, after about the mid-twenties. Healthy people do continue to produce enough hormone to nourish cells and support the growth of hair, nails and muscle mass, but with age, the pituitary's output dwindles, contributing to many of the familiar signs of aging such as wrinkles, loss of muscle mass and thinning hair.
Because high levels of HGH are associated with building muscle, repairing cells and supporting skin elasticity, the search is on for ways to enhance the body's production of HGH throughout life. Athletes and bodybuilders who want to build muscle and weight, as well as those who want to slow down the effects of aging are turning to a variety of ways to boost the levels of HGH in the body and encourage greater production of the hormone at later stages of life.
One controversial approach involves injections of the growth hormone itself. Anti-aging clinics around the US and elsewhere in the world are offering supplemental injections of HGH itself, promising benefits such as enhanced libido, younger-looking skin and even better memory and concentration. Although these treatments are legally available, health experts caution that their long-term effects are not known.
Gamma-aminobutyric acid, or GABA, is a key neurotransmitter which supports the exchange of nerve signals. Also believed to be a natural tranquilizer, GABA is popular particularly among bodybuilders as a way to boost HGH levels. Some research supports this claim, but only if GABA is taken just before strenuous exercise.
Alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine, or A-GPC, is a precursor to acetylcholine, an essential neurotransmitter. Some recent studies suggest that it may temporarily increase levels of HGH when taken before exercising.
Several amino acids, primarily L-arginine, L-Lysine, L-Ornithine and L-Glycine, appear to act as HGH secretagogues, agents which stimulate the pituitary to release HGH. Arginine and Lysine are popularly taken together in supplement form to stimulate muscle development and enhance strength, while glycine or ornithine, when taken alone, may also stimulate the pituitary gland to produce higher levels of HGH.
Human growth hormone is essential for the healthy functioning of cells even after growth is attained. Supplements that either introduce HGH externally or stimulate the body's own production of the hormone are widely available for use as an athletic enhancement or an anti-aging strategy, but questions remain about both their effectiveness and long-term safety.
Please consult with a health care professional before starting any supplementation program. The information contained on this site is general in nature and Company does not take any responsibility for any errors that may appear. Company has made every attempt to make the information as accurate as possible. However, Company does not warrant its accuracy. Please note that the statements on this web site have not been evaluated by the FDA.