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Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the body (building material of protein), which is involved in most metabolic processes than any other amino acids. The special role of glutamine is that it serves as a source of fuel for cells lining the intestines and are necessary for the proper functioning of white blood cells. Leukocytes and other rapidly dividing cells use lots of glutamine and why it is so important to them. Without glutamine, these cells would be unable normally to share.

Traditional medicine recognizes the importance of glutamine. Glutamine is an extremely important component used in the hospitals of mixtures for parenteral nutrition, because, according to double-blind studies, glutamine significantly increases survival among critically ill patients.

Glutamine protects and heals the gut

Glutamine is indicated for diseases and symptoms associated with increased gut permeability (“leaky bowel syndrome), including inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, diabetes, high sugar intake and intake of various drugs (particularly nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and prednisone). Glutamine helps to combat the increased permeability of the intestine through enhanced energy production in the inner lining of the intestine, and also by strengthening the tight intercellular connections.

Supplementation with glutamine is a very important aspect of the prevention of damage to the intestine caused by chemotherapy and radiation therapy. The studies also proved that glutamine helps prevent ulcers in the oral cavity (stomatitis) and inhibition of the immune system in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy.

It is also proven the value of glutamine for patients undergoing surgery for abdominal gastrectomy, sigmoidectomy, cholecystectomy, colectomy, and rectal resection. Abdominal injuries as a result of surgery also can cause damage to the intestinal lining and the development of the syndrome of the increased permeability of the intestine. It is proved that supplementation with glutamine helps to reduce markers of intestinal permeability after abdominal surgery.

Glutamine also helps in the treatment of peptic ulcer disease. According to the results of double-blind clinical study involving 57 people, the results of patients taking 1.6 grams of glutamine a day was better than those who took only conventional treatment. Half of the patients who took glutamine, fully recovered for 2 weeks, and more than 90% of patients were completely free from all symptoms and have recovered within 4 weeks. It is believed that glutamine promotes atheroprotective mukoproteinov lining the stomach and small intestine.

Glutamine promotes muscle growth and improves athletic performance

Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the blood and in the inventory of free amino acids in skeletal muscle. Glutamine stimulates the synthesis and inhibits the degradation of proteins and is a source of energy for the division of muscle cells. Glutamine is also a precursor for the synthesis of amino acids, proteins, nucleotides, glutathione, and other biologically important molecules. Glutamine has anabolic effects on skeletal muscle.

There is some evidence that excessive sports training lead to lower levels of glutamine and glutamine intake can, first, prevent overtraining, and secondly, to help the athlete to recover from overly intense workouts. During sports activities, the concentration of glutamine in the plasma increases. However, during the recovery period after exercise, the concentration of glutamine in the plasma is greatly reduced. Require several hours of recovery before the levels of glutamine in plasma is restored to the level that was before training. If the recovery between workouts is insufficient, a strong impact of physical exercise on the concentration of glutamine in the plasma can accumulate and lead to a very low level of glutamine. This can really be detrimental to athletic performance and muscle growth. Studies have shown that supplementation with glutamine increases glutamine levels in muscle and contributes to muscle protein synthesis. However, glutamine, apparently, does not increase performance if there is no shortage of glutamine in the body. One of the obvious benefits of glutamine for athletes is its ability to prevent infection.

Glutamine supplements strengthen the immune system

Studies have shown that supplementation with glutamine stimulates the immune system and helps the body fight infection. Such effects of glutamine is best demonstrated by the example of endurance athletes (extreme sports stress depresses the immune system) and terminally ill people. It is unknown whether glutamine strengthens the immune system in healthy people.

Glutamine: the usual dosage

Glutamine is produced in the form of capsules, tablets and powder. The typical dosage of glutamine 3-5 grams a day. Alternative recommendations – 20-30 grams of whey protein concentrate.

Glutamine side effects

There were no reports of side effects when taken in a dosage of up to 21 grams per day.

Glutamine: drug interactions

Data on adverse drug interactions were reported. Glutamine may reduce the impact of side effects of drugs on the gastrointestinal tract.

This article was written by Dr. Michael Murray, one of the leading authorities in the field of natural medicine. Over the past 35 years, Dr. Murray has been compiling a massive database of original scientific studies of the medical literature. He has personally collected over 65000 articles from the scientific literature that provide convincing evidence of the effectiveness of diet, vitamins, minerals, herbs and other natural ways of maintaining health and treating disease. It is from this constantly expanding database that Dr. Murray provides the answers on health and treatment on the website DoctorMurray.com. Visit the iHerb page of Dr. Murray by clicking here.


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