Recent Studies Suggest that L-Glutamine May Ease the Effects of Cancer Treatment

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Recent Studies Suggest that L-Glutamine May Ease the Effects of Cancer Treatment

Glutamine is an amino acid that performs critical functions in your body. It is an essential part of your immune system and is a building block for proteins. 

Glutamine has many health benefits, such as maintaining intestinal health; however, its most significant role is linked to easing the effects of cancer treatment, as suggested by recent studies.  Glutamine is naturally produced by your body and can be easily consumed in the form of foods. But for ensuring optimal health, you may need extra Glutamine in the form of supplements. 

This article explains the role of Glutamine in your body, its benefits, and how supplements containing L-Glutamine benefit your body. 

Before moving onto the health benefits of L-Glutamine, let’s understand what Glutamine is.

What is Glutamine? 

Glutamine is an important amino acid that fulfills many roles in the body. However, serving as the building blocks for proteins is its main role as protein ensures organs’ functionality and health. 

Proteins also serve other important functions, such as protecting your body against harmful substances and providing essential substances to the blood.

Glutamine, like other amino acids, exists in two forms: L-Glutamine and D-Glutamine. According to research, L-Glutamine plays a formidable role in making proteins and performing other body functions, while D-Glutamine is not important for humans. 

L-Glutamine can be easily produced by your body and is among the most abundant amino acids in the blood. However, during certain conditions, such as disease or injury, its requirement precedes the amount your body can produce. 

In such a situation, it becomes an essential amino acid and can be obtained from the diet. Glutamine is also quite important for ensuring intestinal health and boosting the immune system. 

The benefits of L-Glutamine are discussed in more detail in the next section. 

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Health Benefits of L-Glutamine 

Some of the benefits of L-Glutamine are discussed below: 

Supports Immune System

One of the most crucial functions of Glutamine is associated with its role in the immune system. It is an important element for immune cells, such as white blood cells and intestinal cells. According to a research study, lower levels of Glutamine in your body could result in compromising the functionality of your immune system. 

Another study suggests that your body breaks down protein stores to release amino acids when its glutamine requirements are more than what your body can produce. Therefore, it would be best to incorporate high-glutamine or high-protein foods into your diet, especially after facing major injuries. 

Similarly, using glutamine supplements becomes crucial to ensure your immune system's functionality after it is impacted due to injury. A study reports that glutamine supplements may help improve health, decrease the risk of infections, and stay at hospitals after surgery. 

Research has also indicated that glutamine supplements may enhance the immune functions of animals after they are affected by viruses or bacteria. 

Speeds Up Muscle Recovery

Glutamine also plays a significant role in speeding up muscle recovery. A research study was conducted to examine the effects of L-glutamine supplementation on quadriceps muscle strength and soreness after eccentric exercise. 

The results suggested that L-glutamine ensures faster recovery of peak torque and overcomes muscle soreness followed by eccentric exercise. The study further revealed that the impact of L-glutamine on muscle recovery might be more prominent in men than women. 

Another study indicated that Glutamine might help attenuate muscle damage caused due to eccentric exercise. 

Regulates Intestinal Health

Intestines are considered the largest portion of the immune system. Intestinal cells and the bacteria that live in your intestine can affect the overall immune system. Glutamine works as the most important energy source for intestinal health. 

According to research, Glutamine helps maintain a barrier between the inner intestine area and the remaining body parts, preventing a leaky gut. It prevents the harmful bacteria present inside the intestines from entering into the rest of your body. 

In addition, Glutamine is also essential for maintaining the cells in the intestine and ensuring their growth. 

As the intestine has a major role in the immune system, Glutamine benefits the immune system by supporting the intestinal cells. 

May Help Overcome Gut Conditions

According to a study mentioned in the Canadian Society of Industrial Research journal, Glutamine helps enhance nutrient absorption and ensure growth hormone in patients suffering from short bowel disease. 

Glutamine can also help reduce diarrhea symptoms among patients facing short bowel disease as it facilitates the reabsorption of water and sodium. 

May Ease the Effects of Cancer Treatment

One of the most significant benefits of Glutamine is associated with easing the effects of cancer treatment. Some cancer patients going through chemotherapy have shown relief of mucositis after they used oral Glutamine. 

According to a research study, supplemental Glutamine reduces cancer growth by stimulating the immune system. Besides, taking Glutamine during radiation or chemotherapy may ease the effects of cancer therapy and increase the selectivity of therapy for curing the tumor. 

A recent study suggests that glutamine metabolism can work as a central player in regulating uncontrolled tumor growth. 

Another recent research study concludes that oral Glutamine helps reduce cancer symptoms and improve the lives of cancer patients. 

Now that you are aware of the health benefits of Glutamine, especially its role in overcoming the effects of cancer treatment, you must learn about the food sources that can help increase glutamine production in your body. 

Major Food Sources of L-Glutamine 

Glutamine is present in various food. A study estimates that a typical diet may contain between 3 to 6 grams of Glutamine per day; however, it may vary depending on the specific diet you consume. As animal products contain higher protein content, they are the best source of Glutamine. 

Some plant-based foods have a considerable percentage of protein content. However, the plant sources that contain a large percentage of protein made from Glutamine may have quite low portions of overall protein, such as corn and white rice. 

The amount of Glutamine in various foods, according to research, are: 

  • Eggs – 0.6 g per 100 g of eggs
  • Beef – 1.2 g per 100 g of beef
  • Corn – 0.4 g per 100 g of corn 
  • White rice – 0.3 g per 100 g of rice 
  • Skim milk – 0.3 g per 100 g of tofu 

By increasing protein in your diet, you can increase the amount of Glutamine in your body. However, taking supplements containing Glutamine is another way of increasing the glutamine amount in your body. 

How Does Supplement Containing L-Glutamine Help Your Body? 

Supplements containing an effective dose of L-Glutamine help support muscle building. They support protein synthesis and repair damaged muscle fibers. However, it would be best to opt for a scientifically validated supplement that contains an adequate amount of L-glutamine. 

DMoose post-workout powder contains 5 grams of L-glutamine per serving, which is a perfect amount of Glutamine for athletes and those following a high-intensity workout routine. The post-workout drink containing Glutamine ensures muscle recovery, muscle repair and reduces overall body soreness. 

The post-workout powder helps overcome muscle fatigue after a workout. It also prevents the breakdown of lean mass when you are on a weight loss journey. Having a post-workout recovery drink is the best thing to do after a workout. 

The recovery drink can also help fight off free radicals built due to extended rigorous workout sessions, thereby preventing damage to your cells. 

Due to its immense health benefits, the L-glutamine supplement is also considered the best muscle recovery food. 

Post Workout Powder

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Takeaway 

Glutamine is an important amino acid naturally produced in the body and found in various foods. It plays an important role in supporting your immune system by regulating your intestinal cells. 

While speeding up muscle recovery and helping with gut conditions are some other benefits of Glutamine, minimizing the effects of cancer treatment is the most significant benefit of all. 

A protein-based diet can provide an adequate amount of Glutamine to your body. However, taking supplements containing Glutamine is also quite beneficial, especially for meeting your body's additional glutamine requirements under certain conditions, such as injuries or illness. 

Article Sources

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  • Breslow, Ronald, and Zhan-Ling Cheng. “On the Origin of Terrestrial Homochirality for Nucleosides and Amino Acids.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 106, no. 23, June 2009, pp. 9144–46. PubMed, https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0904350106
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  • Choi, Yeon-Kyung, and Keun-Gyu Park. “Targeting Glutamine Metabolism for Cancer Treatment.” Biomolecules & Therapeutics, vol. 26, no. 1, Jan. 2018, pp. 19–28. PubMed Central, https://doi.org/10.4062/biomolther.2017.178
  • Córdova-Martínez, Alfredo, et al. “Effect of Glutamine Supplementation on Muscular Damage Biomarkers in Professional Basketball Players.” Nutrients, vol. 13, no. 6, June 2021, p. 2073. mdpi.com, https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13062073
  • De-Souza, Daurea Abadia, and Lewis Joel Greene. “Pharmacological Nutrition After Burn Injury.” The Journal of Nutrition, vol. 128, no. 5, May 1998, pp. 797–803. Silverchair, https://doi.org/10.1093/jn/128.5.797
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