What Is the Difference Between Glutamine & Glutathione?

Both glutamine and glutathione affect the immune system
Both glutamine and glutathione affect the immune system (Image: Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Umberto Salvagnin)

Glutamine is an amino acid. Glutathione is an antioxidant. Both are produced naturally by the body. Both can also be supplemented by sources outside your body. Their roles and their effects are quite different.


Glutamine is building block of protein and exists in the bloodstream (see References 1). Glutathione is a small molecule which is found in ever cell in the body (see References 2).


Glutamine aids the immune system in repairing damage. Glutathione helps attack free radicals and also helps the liver to remove chemicals from the body.


Both glutamine and glutathione can be found in raw food sources and in pill or intravenous supplements.

Food Sources

Glutamine can be found in beef, pork, dairy products, raw spinach, raw parsley and cabbage. Glutathione can be found in raw meat, fruit and vegetables.


Lack of both glutathione and glutamine affects the immune system. Lack of glutamine also affects brain function and digestion.

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