If you want to get the most benefit from your Red Light/Infrared Therapy sessions, here’s a little secret: consume foods that promote the generation of nitric oxide.  For when you consume nitric oxide-promoting foods, combined with the nitric oxide released naturally within your red blood cells by your Red Light/Infrared Therapy sessions, you are therapeutically modulating nitric oxide bioactivity — and maximizing the benefits produced by your therapy sessions for the best possible therapeutic outcomes for yourself!

What is Nitric Oxide (NO)?

Nitric oxide has been called the “miracle molecule” and described as “the body’s natural vasodilator” for its beneficial effects on circulation and blood pressure. The nitric oxide (NO) molecule is gaseous, intracellular and intercellular, produced endogenously within your body through the oxidation of L-arginine in the endothelial cells which line the blood vessels in the inner layer of the arteries. “NO is a short-lived diatomic signaling molecule that exerts multiple effects on kidney, cardiovascular and metabolic functions, including modulation of renal autoregulation, tubular fluid and electrolyte transport, vascular tone, blood pressure, platelet aggregation, immune cell activation, insulin-glucose homeostasis and mitochondrial function.”[1]  Scientists have discovered that NO also affects the liver, the eyes, and the gastrointestinal and nervous systems.

The Important Role of NO

In 2012, a scientific study stated that, “Nitric oxide (NO) has led a revolution in physiology and pharmacology research during the last two decades.”[2] Although first identified as an endothelium-derived relaxing factor (EDRF) in connection with the vascular system, “Over the following years, however, the focus on NO research rapidly expanded from the vascular system to its role in immunity and inflammation, the nervous system, pregnancy, aging, and cell death.”[3]  “…NO has emerged as a fundamental signaling device regulating virtually every critical cellular function, as well as a potent mediator of cellular damage in a wide range of conditions.”[4]

Dangers of Compromised NO Production

Because NO plays such a vital role in the body, “Insufficient production of NO (for example, during older age and in various disease conditions) can adversely impact health and physical performance.”[5]  “Reduced NO bioactivity due to compromised NO generation or increased metabolism has been associated with aging and kidney, cardiovascular and metabolic disorders, which are often coupled with increased generation of ROS leading to oxidative stress.”[6]  And oxidative stress can be very damaging, as many healthcare professionals believe that it is the common denominator behind hundreds of diseases, plus the aging process itself.  Since NO is so crucial to good health, the ability of Red Light Therapy to locally release NO is extremely valuable!

Foods that Increase Nitric Oxide

NO can be boosted within the body by consuming nitrate-rich foods.  Green leafy vegetables such as arugula (the highest known source of nitrates), spinach, Swiss chard, parsley, and celery elevate NO levels. Other NO-enhancing foods are walnuts (high in L-arginine which converts into NO), watermelons (high in the amino acid L-citrulline, which converts into L-arginine and then into NO), pomegranates, cranberries, hot chili peppers, onions, garlic, raw cacao powder, dark chocolate, and beets — beet greens, beet chips, and beetroot juice.   And citrus fruits such as lemons, oranges, and grapefruits contain high amounts of Vitamin C, which raises levels of NO synthase (NOS) enzymes that convert L-arginine into NO, making citrus helpful to NO production.

Red Light/Infrared Therapy Releases NO

Scientific research proves that Red Light Therapy releases NO. How?  Photons of light emitted by the Red Light and Infrared Light Therapy pads are readily absorbed through the skin, penetrating deeply into tissues. Upon absorption, light is converted into signals that induce a wide range of beneficial biochemical processes in cells that stimulate and aid the body’s innate healing processes. During a Red Light/Infrared Therapy session, NO is a beneficial chemical released from blood vessels lining the endothelium. NO causes vasodilation, which significantly improves blood flow and circulation in the local area where therapy pads are placed. And, increased circulation helps to decrease inflammation and reduce pain.

In Conclusion – Try Red Light/Infrared Therapy

NO plays a vital role in a many key functions throughout the body, especially in promoting vasodilation and increased blood flow. Using Red Light and Infrared Light Therapy is a simple, easy, and dependable way to release NO so that blood, oxygen, and nutrients can flow optimally for pain relief and healing support. If you are looking to repair or enhance your health (and/or relieve pain and restore function) Red Light/Infrared Therapy can help.

And if you are a chiropractor, physical therapist, acupuncturist, or podiatrist, consider adding Red Light/Infrared Therapy to your treatment menu.  One Red Light/Infrared Therapy system can bring your patients years of improved health!  Contact Rob Berman at Energia Medical at 860-707-4220 or via email at rob@energiamedical. com to learn more about Red Light/Infrared Therapy systems from Energia Medical.


[1] Carlström M. Nitric oxide signalling in kidney regulation and cardiometabolic health. Nat Rev Nephrol. 2021 Sep;17(9):575-590. doi: 10.1038/s41581-021-00429-z. Epub 2021 Jun 1. PMID: 34075241; PMCID: PMC8169406, p. 575.

[2] Bescós R, Sureda A, Tur JA, Pons A. The effect of nitric-oxide-related supplements on human performance. Sports Med. 2012 Feb 1;42(2):99-117. doi: 10.2165/11596860-000000000-00000. PMID: 22260513, Abstract.

[3] Sobrevia L, Ooi L, Ryan S, Steinert JR. Nitric Oxide: A Regulator of Cellular Function in Health and Disease. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2016;2016:9782346. doi: 10.1155/2016/9782346. Epub 2015 Dec 21. PMID: 26798429; PMCID: PMC4699049, p. 1.

[4] Pacher P, Beckman JS, Liaudet L. Nitric oxide and peroxynitrite in health and disease. Physiol Rev. 2007 Jan;87(1):315-424. doi: 10.1152/physrev.00029.2006. PMID: 17237348; PMCID: PMC2248324, Abstract.

[5] Jones AM, Thompson C, Wylie LJ, Vanhatalo A. Dietary Nitrate and Physical Performance. Annu Rev Nutr. 2018 Aug 21;38:303-328. doi: 10.1146/annurev-nutr-082117-051622. PMID: 30130468, Abstract.

[6] Carlström M. Nitric oxide signalling in kidney regulation and cardiometabolic health. Nat Rev Nephrol. 2021 Sep;17(9):575-590. doi: 10.1038/s41581-021-00429-z. Epub 2021 Jun 1. PMID: 34075241; PMCID: PMC8169406, p. 587.

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