• Staff Writer

Is Glutamine for you?

Whether you're looking to increase your performance, build muscle or simply improve your health, glutamine could prove to be a beneficial addition to your daily diet.

Considered conditionally essential, glutamine is naturally produced by the body but only enough to meet its needs under normal circumstances. During an intense workout, our bodies become stressed and our muscles and tendons require more glutamine than the amount supplied by a normal diet. Levels can drop by as much as 50% and plasma levels by 30%. This drop is a gateway for the body to use muscle for energy rather than carbohydrates and can take up to five days to replenish levels on its own making supplementing an easy choice for a regular gym-goer.

Glutamine is the most abundant single amino in our system and is used in the synthesis of protein, helping support the production of muscle. Due to it's unique structure, it is also the primary transporter of nitrogen into our muscle cells.

During intense exercise our levels of glutamine fall and muscles begin to be tore down for energy. Supplementing before a workout can help allow your body to maintain a high supply of glutamine thus helping prevent muscle breakdown.

Aiding in fat metabolism and new muscle growth, glutamine has shown positive results in helping with human growth hormone (HGH) secretion. Research has indicated that HGH levels can rise by nearly 400% after supplementing. This hormonal response leads to an increase in resting metabolic rate and improves the "after-burn" effect post exercise.

By enhancing muscle hydration, glutamine also helps the body recuperate from extreme workouts faster and aids in the recovery process of muscles, wounds and even burns. It also helps slow down muscular exhaustion by supporting endurance.

Helping to burn fat and build lean muscle mass, glutamine helps suppress insulin levels and stabilize blood glucose, enabling the body to use less muscle mass to maintain blood sugar and insulin sensitivity in the cells. This alone makes choosing glutamine a great choice for diabetics and those with intense sugar and carb cravings.

Also a vital nutrient for the intestines, glutamine helps improve gastrointestinal health by assisting in its rebuilding and repair. It can also help heal ulcers and leaky gut syndrome by acting as a "band-aid" for protection against further damage. A primary fuel source to the immune system, glutamine also aids in fighting viruses and bacteria and is critically important to a wide range of bodily processes.

If you're not currently consuming adequate glutamine in your diet, supplementing may be a good choice for you. It's always wise to consult with your primary care physician before starting any new regiments, especially if you're on regularly prescribed medication. After discussing it with your doctor, check out your local vitamin store or online retailer.

The benefits are waiting!

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