Glutamine is one of the twenty naturally occurring amino acids found in dietary protein. In fact, it is the most abundant amino acid in the human body. It is classified as a conditionally essential amino acid. You should know that your body stops the production of such amino acids under severe illnesses and physical trauma which makes it very necessary to get oral glutamine supplementation to keep its levels normal in the body.
Poultry products like meats and eggs along with dairy-based protein sources like whey and casein are very rich in glutamine. Glutamine has been widely used to build muscle, enhance sports performance and improve immunity. In this article, we will see to what extent do scientific studies certify this glutamine supplement uses.
Major Uses of Glutamine
Almost two decades back, a study was conducted with the purpose to determine the effect of oral glutamine supplementation on muscle glycogen stores during recovery from a strenuous training session. The study came to the following conclusion – “Ingestion of glutamine alone appeared to promote muscle glycogen resynthesis during recovery from exhaustive exercise.”
Apart from promoting quick recovery, another major glutamine powder uses include the prevention of body from turning catabolic under long intervals of the workout.
Increased Endurance Performance
Besides benefiting bodybuilders, Glutamine has also shown to be very useful for other sports as well. Take for instance this study wherein fifteen men supplemented with glutamine were asked to run for approximately 34 km outdoors. The study showed that the supplementation of glutamine reduced the accumulation of blood ammonia (which is a cause for central fatigue) and hence improved performance.
Another study conducted by Taipei Medical University on mice subjects demonstrated that glutamine supplementation might reduce the stress and inflammatory response associated with T-helper cells and ultimately lead to elevated endurance performance.
Put simply, reduction in glutamine levels in the body may have a variety of ill-effects including poor performance and disturbance in body’s normal immune function.
Elevated Exercise Immunity
Overtraining and long-duration exercises are often associated with damage to immune function. Under such conditions, the supply of glutamine is decreased which may lead to immunosuppression.
A very recent study was of the opinion that supplementation of glutamine along with increased protein intake can not only diminish the reduction of serum glutamine levels during long intervals of training but also reduce the damage to immune cells.
Although indirectly, oral supplementation glutamine can benefit individuals in shredding layers of unwanted fat. A study conducted by Welbourne TC demonstrated that oral glutamine loading increased human growth hormone (HGH) levels by almost 400% percent. Alleviated HGH levels can potentially result in increased metabolism and enhance the after-burn effect. Obviously, higher the metabolic rates, more calories will be burnt and thus easy to lose weight.
However, this use of glutamine has been studied by only a handful of studies, and there’s more to be investigated in this regard.
Hands down one of the most researched glutamine uses is immunity boost. Glutamine is profoundly known for its ability to enhance body’s immune function. Infact, this glutamine use has been studied for several decades now and the majority of them, including the one performed by the University of Southampton, have established glutamine as a vital fuel source for body’s immunity and backed it for its important role in body’s optimal immune functions.
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