Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the body and is found mostly in the muscles and lungs. It is manufactured by the body, which makes it a nonessential amino acid (e.g., Leucine, Valine, Isoleucine). It is considered a "conditionally" essential amino acid. When the body is under extreme stress, the body's demand for glutamine rises while the production does not.
Glutamine and Immune Function
A lack of glutamine can cause failed immune response. Glutamine helps create the antioxidant glutathione and acts as a free radical scavenger. Glutamine also helps the brain, aids in digestion and rids the body of excess ammonia.
Glutamine and Athletes
Glutamine is depleted during intense exercise. This can cause increased muscular soreness and poor recovery. Long-distance runners can benefit from additional glutamine.
Glutamine and HIV/AIDS
Individuals with HIV or AIDS often experience severe weight loss. Glutamine supplementation may help reduce weight loss linked to these conditions.
Glutamine and Obesity
Animal studies have shown that glutamine can aid in suppressing appetite. On the other hand, more human clinical studies are needed to confirm this. Glutamine is also known to control sugar cravings.
Typical Glutamine Powder Supplementation
Glutamine can be found in powder form (i.e. capsule or free powder). Doses range from 500mg or 10g daily, depending on the individual. Do not mix with hot water, as doing so will destroy the glutamine.
Consult your health care professional before you start any supplement.