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Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in our body. Its presence in our organism is of 60%, in relation to the remaining amino acids. Additionally, it is the only one containing two nitrogen atoms. Because of this, it favours the formation of muscle much more than other amino acids.

It also strengthens the immune system and stimulates the production of glutathione, the most powerful antioxidant available to the body.

It has a particularly high concentration in blood plasma and has a 60% presence within the amino acids involved in muscle creation.

Glutamine properties

It promotes protein synthesis and is essential for sportsmen and athletes that perform intensive training. The benefits include strength building and counteracting the loss of muscle mass.

It regulates the blood sugar level and ensures that the organism has the glucose needed to convert it into energy. It also regulates the secretion of growth hormone, HGH, which plays a crucial role in the metabolism of fat and the formation of muscle.

Clinical studies have shown that L-glutamine increases the natural release of growth hormone by 400% and 200% for testosterone, if you take it after training or exercise.

It helps to regulate the body's pH and ensures the balance of base acids, essential for the proper functioning of cells. It acts as a neurotransmitter and ensures that the cells can communicate with each other.

It promotes a healthy intestinal tract and protects it from damage and stomach ulcers. It is involved in the transport of nitrogen in the body. This is done through the transmission of different chemical reactions in the cells. This results in the synthesis of protein and creatine.

Glutamine is recommended in the following cases:

  • To accelerate the construction and formation of muscle when doing physical exercise
  • In the case of immunocompromised patients
  • When there is a risk of infections
  • After a serious surgical operation
  • To relieve physical and mental stress

What food contains glutamine?

Among the food that is rich in this amino acid we can include meat, fish, wheat and dairy products. Quark or cottage cheese have a particularly high level of this amino acid.

It is heat resistant, so cooking this type of food does not affect glutamine. It is also available as a dietary supplement in the form of L-glutamine or glutamic acid.

What are the symptoms of a glutamine deficiency?

It is vital for the body, its deficiency in the diet can cause serious damage to the immune system. Only a small amount can be crucial in making the body more susceptible to suffer an infection.

This is because it is responsible for protecting the mucous membranes. When the body doesn't have enough glutamine, especially in the intestine where the mucous membranes are permeable, you are more liable to be attacked by viruses and bacteria.

When there is a deficit, physical and mental performance are also considerably diminished. Problems of low muscle tone, inability to apply effort, and lack of concentration appear. After suffering a surgical operation, the body also has a greater need for glutamine.

How and when to take glutamine

Athletes who perform strength and endurance sports have experienced the extraordinary benefits offered by glutamine for themselves. It promotes rapid muscle building and also helps maintain muscle mass. Another notable effect is that the intake of glutamine rapidly increases muscle mass.

These days it is used more and more for strengthening the immune system. The dose ingested through glutamine supplements can vary from person to another. For some users taking 4 grammes per day is enough, but in the case of athletes who do strength sports, the dose can climb to up to 20 grammes per day.

Glutamine promotes a greater secretion of growth hormone. It is also used for the treatment of intestinal diseases, given that it has a positive effect on the mucous membranes of the small intestine. Glutamine regenerates the mucous membranes and protects the intestine against the attacks of harmful bacteria and viruses.

Another of the effects of this amino acid is that it stimulates fat loss, since its effects on growth hormone promote the synthesis of proteins and the loss of fat cells along with it.

Glutamine is especially important for:

  • Athletes who do strength and power sports, as well as intensive physical training
  • Improving physical performance in general
  • Patients with a weakened immune system
  • Patients with intestinal disease
  • People who suffer from stress
  • Improving concentration
  • Accelerating recovery after surgery
  • Patients who have an unstable blood sugar level 
  • Helps with slimming diets
  • Stimulating intellectual performance

Opinions of dietitians and nutritionists:

Nutritionists agree that taking dietary supplements based on glutamine promotes growth hormone production. This effect has been shown in several clinical trials. Other research has also shown that it produces an increase in physical and mental energy.