A lot is being said about the effects of nitric oxide on COVID-19 patients. Nitric oxide or NO has been effective in treating the SARS epidemic in 2003. Scientists are saying NO is equally powerful to be a treatment for the current coronavirus pandemic.
Can nitric oxide truly prevent or treat COVID? Can it be the answer we are looking for?
What is Nitric Oxide
NO is a gaseous molecule that exists naturally in our body. In fact, almost all cells in our body generate nitric oxide. More interestingly, NO is found in countless cells in our immune system.
That’s the first clue nitric oxide can hold some meaning for helping COVID patients.
NO plays a big role in our body. It is a vasodilator and relaxes our blood vessels. As a result, nitric oxide can boost blood circulation and transport of oxygen to different body parts.
NO also helps in the removal of bodily wastes and maintaining muscle health. Additionally, NO is responsible for the regulation of different organs in our body.
Athletes take NO supplements to improve endurance and stamina. A lot of it has to do with the oxygen increasing power of nitric oxide.
For this blog, we will focus on NO’s role in enhancing oxygen levels and fighting coronavirus. It is through these two aspects that nitric oxide turns out to be beneficial for treating coronavirus.
How can Nitric Oxide Treat COVID-19
NO can help coronavirus patients in three ways:
- By improving oxygen levels
- By fighting lung inflammation
- By acting as an antiviral agent
1. Nitric Oxide Improves Oxygen Levels
Nitric oxide delivered through inhalation (as it’s a gas) in small concentrations improves blood-oxygen saturation level. We are witnessing how patients in the third wave are experiencing dangerously low levels of oxygen. Nitric oxide can be a way out and help people breathe peacefully.
According to News Medical, nitric oxide improves oxygen transfer in our lungs by relaxing blood vessels. However, this is applicable only when you inhale the gas. As a result, scientists are recommending NO nasal sprays to patients.
A recent study found nitric oxide to improve oxygen levels in COVID-19 patients. The improvement was significant, as noted by the scientists.
NO supplements taken by bodybuilders help transport oxygen to the muscles and different body parts. Inhaling NO confines the effects to the lungs only. However, COVID patients should worry about improving oxygen levels in their lungs.
2. Nitric Oxide Reduces Lung Inflammation
Nitric oxide treatment for 2003 SARS patients found it to reduce inflammation in the lungs. As a result, nitric oxide provides a protective effect on the lungs and protection from infections.
According to News Medical, nitric oxide may even safeguard the lungs from oxidative damage. Moreover, NO may even help damaged lungs function a bit better.
In short, nitric oxide can help extend the life of COVID patients and shorten hospital stays.
3. Antiviral Properties of Nitric Oxide
Nitric oxide comes with antiviral and antibacterial properties. As a result, NO can play a role in combating the COVID virus.
In 2003, nitric oxide was able to stop the replication of the SARS-CoV virus that caused the SARS outbreak. The recent coronavirus is closely related to the SARS virus and may act the same way to nitric oxide.
Fortunately, scientists tested the hypothesis and were glad about the results. A recent study shows nitric oxide is effective in checking the replication of the coronavirus or SARS-CoV-2 virus.
Additionally, nitric oxide can even reduce some of the damage caused by COVID. Moreover, NO also offered protection against the coronavirus.
Scientists used a substance called SNAP to generate nitric oxide that checked the growth of the coronavirus. Plus, the positive effects increased with the increase in dose.
Whether other modes of NO delivery works is still under research.
Apart from the above, nitric oxide may be beneficial for COVID as it:
- Alters our immune response
- Reduces blood clots in patients
Should COVID-19 Patients Take Nitric Oxide?
News Medical recommends NO inhalation for COVID-19 patients. Of course, you should always approach a medical professional for the best advice. Also, not every COVID patient suffers from low oxygen levels.
According to scientists, nitric oxide can be effective through inhalation unless we have an effective form of treatment. Now that we have vaccines, the need for NO may not be so strong.
However, it is an effective way to reduce the span of illness, effects, and discomfort. For those without access to vaccines, nitric oxide can be a potential option for COVID-19 patients.
Can nitric oxide help COVID-19 patients?
Doctors are recommending nitric oxide as an effective treatment of the coronavirus. However, if you have access to vaccines, then it may be a second option. Consult your doctor to find out if you will benefit from inhaling nitric oxide.
How can I take nitric oxide for COVID?
Doctors are recommending inhaling nitric oxide for treating coronavirus. You may be able to get NO nasal sprays in medical shops. However, consult a doctor for professional advice and dosage recommendations.
Will nitric oxide supplements treat COVID-19?
All studies used nitric oxide gas through inhalation to treat COVID patients. Other ways of administration are not researched yet. So, it is too early to say whether NO supplements will work. You can consult your doctor for sound advice.
Can nitric oxide fight infections?
Nitric oxide is proven to have antibacterial and antiviral properties. It has been successfully proven to inhibit the replication of the SARS virus. Now studies show nitric oxide is effective against the coronavirus. So, yes, nitric oxide may fight infections.
Can nitric oxide increase oxygen levels?
Nitric oxide helps the lungs absorb more oxygen. It also widens the blood vessels to boost circulation and oxygen transportation. Many studies have noted this beneficial effect of NO.