Everything You Need to Know About Glutathione Effects

In addition to benefits related to the treatment of certain diseases, glutathione has great cosmetic benefits. If you are interested, read this article.

In addition to its antioxidant function, glutathione effects also play other important roles in the body. Thus, it is involved in tissue repair, enzyme and hormone production, the immune system, and is essential for the detoxification of the body.

In addition to being found in some foods, it can be administered topically, orally, intravenously, or inhaled. It is done when levels decrease due to factors such as age, poor diet, or illness.

In this order, it helps in the treatment of some health conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, psoriasis, and fatty liver,  and is also used for cosmetic purposes to brighten the skin and prevent aging.

Glutathione Definition and Foods Containing It

Glutathione is a compound found in the body’s cells and is considered a tripeptide composed of three basic amino acids: cysteine, glycine, and glutamic acid.

Although produced naturally by the liver, certain foods, particularly the following high in sulfur content, can also stimulate glutathione production.

  • garlic
  • onion
  • broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • bok choy
  • avocado
  • asparagus
  • seaweeds
  • flax seeds

These glutathione-containing foods may also have changes in content due to processing (cooking and pasteurization). Similarly, there are factors that affect the natural production of glutathione, including insomnia and stress, cancer, HIV/AIDS, type 2 diabetes, and Parkinson’s disease.

In contrast, certain supplements promote or increase their presence in the body. Among them are curcumin, vitamins C and E, N-acetylcysteine, and selenium.

Glutathione Cauliflower
Cabbage and cauliflower are sources of glutathione. However, cooking can reduce these components.

Glutathione Benefits

This tripeptide is a natural antioxidant that is involved in a variety of processes including tissue repair, protein production, and immune system function.

For this reason, some people take or supplement with glutathione to protect against oxidation, boost the immune system, and treat various conditions.

oxidative stress relief

It is a process that occurs when the production of free radicals increases or the body’s ability to fight them decreases . High levels of oxidative stress in the body can lead to the development of some chronic diseases. Glutathione, which has antioxidant properties, helps reduce the effects of oxidative stress.

Cancer Prevention

Studies have shown that endogenous antioxidant compounds such as glutathione can limit the effects of oxidative stress, which can greatly benefit cancer prevention . So let’s get enough glutathione through a good diet.

uncontrolled diabetes

Studies have shown that supplementing with cysteine ​​and glycine may benefit people with uncontrolled diabetes , reducing oxidative stress and other damage associated with the disease .

improve insulin resistance

It has also been generally observed that increasing glutathione levels improves insulin resistance and fat burning , helping with weight control regardless of diabetes.

Peripheral Arterial Disease Relief

It is a condition that occurs when a peripheral artery (almost always in the leg) becomes blocked due to the buildup of atherosclerotic plaque . According to one study , glutathione supplements improve circulation, increasing the ability to walk longer distances without pain.

Relief of alcoholic and non-alcoholic fatty liver symptoms

Antioxidant deficiency affects cell turnover in the  liver and can lead to fatty liver disease regardless of regular alcohol consumption.

However, glutathione helps increase bilirubin levels . Studies have shown that this tripeptide is most effective when administered intravenously.

However, in another study , oral administration has positive effects when accompanied by positive lifestyle changes in people with NAFLD.

Improvement of chronic inflammation in autoimmune diseases

Chronic inflammation increases oxidative stress in autoimmune diseases such as lupus, celiac disease, and rheumatoid arthritis . Therefore , studies suggest that glutathione may be helpful.

Glutathione Benefits: Relieve Respiratory Disease Symptoms

For respiratory conditions such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and cystic fibrosis , inhaling N-acetylcysteine ​​affects glutathione levels, so it thins mucus, making it less sticky and easier to remove .

Managing Parkinson’s disease symptoms

One study found that intravenous glutathione was effective in managing symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, such as tremor and spasticity, and helped improve patients’ quality of life.

autistic child

Children with autism have lower levels of this tripeptide in their brains, resulting in more oxidative damage. However, transdermal administration of glutathione improved plasma cysteine ​​and sulfate levels in these patients in clinical trials .

other diseases

There have been studies of the use of glutathione to treat other diseases such as psoriasis, Lyme disease, Alzheimer’s disease, osteoarthritis, cataracts and glaucoma, heart disease, and hepatitis. However, more data is still needed in this regard.

Glutathione Benefits: Cosmetic Uses

Glutathione also inhibits melanogenesis. Therefore, this antioxidant is found in products such as soaps and creams for skin lightening.

In some regions, there is also a practice of injecting this compound. However, this use is not regulated by health authorities warning of potential risks .

Lotion with glutathione
L-glutathione variant creams are available on the market, but there is no convincing evidence of anti-aging effects.

Glutathione Side Effects, Risks and Interactions

There is not enough research on the side effects of glutathione supplements, so  little data are available except for some anecdotal reports.

Possible side effects include:

  • rash
  • liver dysfunction
  • abdominal cramps
  • Low zinc levels (long term)
  • thyroid imbalance
  • Shortness of breath (when inhaling)

Also , it is not known how safe glutathione intake or injection is during pregnancy or lactation, so  use caution when using it.

How Much Glutathione Can You Get?

Glutathione intake has not been precisely determined. Appropriate intake or dosage will depend on a variety of factors, including age, sex, and medical history.

It is said that the amount absorbed orally is less than that of intravenous injection or inhalation. This is because stomach acid and enzymes produced by the liver break it down into these substances.

It is best to seek medical advice if you plan to use glutathione supplements.

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