What Are The Benefits of L-Glutamine?
If you don’t work within the healthcare industry and have heard of L-Glutamine (often just referred to as glutamine), it was likely in regards to supplements, protein, or bodybuilding. L-Glutamine is an important amino acid for the human body - the most plentiful amino acid in our body in fact, and the majority source of the nitrogen found in our body - and research has shown that it has far more beneficial uses in our body than just growing bigger muscles.
Because L-Glutamine is a building block of protein, it was initially taken in by the bodybuilding industry as a way to help grow your muscles, but it turns out that the amino acid is also an important tool that can help in muscle recovery, our immune system, burn victims, brain health, intestinal health, heart health, and digestion. Let’s go through some of the many benefits that L-Glutamine can provide when it is a part of your daily diet.
Is it OK to take L-Glutamine daily?
Yes, and to that point, you should be taking L-Glutamine daily due to the many benefits that it provides. L-Glutamine is what is known as a “conditional” essential amino acid. This means that, while your body makes it on its own, your body also uses a massive amount of L-Glutamine for its daily processes. If your diet does not contain enough of the essential amino acid, it may begin to sap it from other parts of your body, such as your muscles.
Some may tell you that you don’t need to take L-Glutamine as a supplement for any health benefits since many of the protein-based foods we eat contain it and our body produces it, but people who are active, have certain metabolic conditions, leaky gut, or stick to a plant-based diet will likely not have as much L-Glutamine in their natural diet as they need.
You can get L-Glutamine into your diet through daily supplements or the following foods:
- Grass-fed beef
- Chinese cabbage
- Cottage cheese
- wild-caught fish
It is estimated that a typical diet may contain three to six grams of L-Glutamine per day, and that those who wish to gain the health benefits of L-Glutamine may take supplements containing doses between two to five grams, taken twice a day.
Key Health Benefits of L-Glutamine
L-Glutamine and your immune system
One of the greatest benefits of the health aspects of L-Glutamine is to your immune system. The essential amino acid is a critical source of fuel for the different cells that make up that system, including your white blood cells and certain intestinal cells (we’ll get into how important your intestines are for your immune system shortly).
It is so important, in fact, that your immune system may be compromised if insufficient amounts of L-Glutamine are present. Your natural levels of L-Glutamine may be compromised from major trauma, burns, or even surgeries. If your body needs more L-Glutamine than it can produce, it will break down protein stores such as your muscles to release more of it. L-Glutamine has been shown to improve health, decrease infections, and lead to shorter hospital stays after surgery. It has also been shown to increase survival rates in critically ill patients.
Intestinal Health & Leaky Gut
Most of us had never heard of leaky gut until recently, but now it seems to be everywhere that we look for health information. Much of our immune system is actually within our gut (about 75-80%), where billions of bacteria come together to help defend our body from sickness, among other things. When your gut is healthy, it remains tightly sealed to prevent toxins, undigested food, and bacteria from passing from your intestines into your bloodstream. A leaky gut is the result of “hyperpermeability,” where tiny openings develop and allow these things that are normally blocked to pass into your bloodstream.
Another of benefit of L-Glutamine is that it is also the major fuel source for the cells of your small intestine. Aside from fuel, it helps to maintain that barrier between your intestines and the rest of your body, which helps to keep you from the hyperpermeability that allows things to leak into your bloodstream that shouldn’t be there.
L-Glutamine has also been shown to provide positive health benefits for those who suffer from the following digestive conditions:
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- Leaky gut
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
- Ulcerative colitis
L-Glutamine for Brain Health
L-Glutamine is also a precursor for the neurotransmitter glutamate, which is necessary for your brain to function properly. A New York University School of Medicine study showed that traumatic brain injuries could sometimes lead the brain to atrophy, with most of the damage created by a disruption of the glutamine-glutamate cycle that led to abnormally high glutamate levels. A disruption of this process has also been shown to result in other neurological disorders such as schizophrenia, epilepsy, depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, and alcohol addiction.
L-Glutamine Benefits for Heart and Metabolic Health
Studies are starting to show that L-Glutamine may have a large role in heart health by serving as a substrate for your very DNA, Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP), proteins, and lipids. The essential amino acid also has both potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects that may benefit your health by reducing the risk factor for some cardiovascular issues such as hypertension, obesity, diabetes, and glucose intolerance.
Research has shown that Human Growth Hormone (HGH) levels rise substantially when a person takes L-Glutamine as a supplement, which leads to an increase in the resting metabolic rate and helps a person shed fat and reduce their body’s overall fat composition.
L-Glutamine for Faster Muscle Recovery
Although recent studies seem to show that L-Glutamine does not in fact make your muscles bigger, it does play an important role in the muscles of anyone who is athletic or very active. After intense exercise, the level of naturally occurring L-Glutamine in your body can drop precipitously. As we said above, if your body is low on L-Glutamine it may sap the essential amino acids from another part of your body, as it plays such an important role in so many of the body’s processes.
Another important benefit of L-Glutamine supplementation for athletes or anyone who is very active is that it prevents your body from having to take anything away from your muscles, and studies have shown that the extra L-Glutamine may benefit your workout and body by allowing you to both push yourself further than you could without it, and for your muscles to recover faster than they would if you were not taking it as a supplement.
Shop Digestive Vibrance Products
If you are looking for a way to add the benefits of L-Glutamine into your daily life, there is a product from Vibrant Health called Digestive Vibrance that provides the daily doses of glutamine that you need, along with a host of other components that will assist your digestive system and health.
Digestive Vibrance contains fermentable fibers, 100 billion probiotics, and a group of specific ingredients all carefully selected to improve digestion and bowel health. This plant-based, certified organic, vegan-friendly daily shake provides nutritional support to help the body heal itself. Including 100 billion probiotics from eight strains specifically chosen for their digestive health benefits, this daily supplement helps relieve discomfort while supporting regularity and improved digestion.
Whether you are suffering from one of the digestive issues that are helped by the daily supplementation of L-Glutamine, or you are just looking for a way to get the health benefits of this essential amino acid into your daily life, check out the Vibrant Health online store via the link above to pick up a bottle of Digestive Vibrance today.