Benefits of Glutathione

The most important antioxidant found in the body, present in every living cell on the planet and critical to life itself. No surprise that Glutathione is considered the body’s master antioxidant. The benefits of Glutathione range far and wide, lending itself to our cellular health and therefore the health and function of every system of the body. Overstating the benefits of Glutathione is simply impossible.

23 Proven Benefits of Glutathione

First of all, it is important to abolish the rumor that oral L-glutathione supplements are useless and completely broken down during digestion. L-glutathione supplements are capable of improving GSH levels in the body, as a recent study has proven. [1]

1. Anti-Aging

Anti Aging

The “free radical theory of aging” is quite popular among experts. Essentially, the FRTA states that organisms age because cells accumulate free radical damage over time. So by combating this free radical damage, Glutathione helps to slow the aging process. [2]

2. Free Radical Species


Chemically reactive molecules containing oxygen. Reactive oxygen species are a natural byproduct of metabolism. They can also cause severe harm to our cells, cumulatively they are known as oxidative stress. Antioxidants, such as Glutathione, can help combat these free radical species and reduce oxidative stress levels. [10]

3. Anti-Inflammatory


A natural immune response to infection and trauma, inflammation is part of our healing process. When it persists however, it poses a severe health risk. Glutathione can help to regulate the inflammatory response and combat chronic inflammation. [11]

4. Heavy Metal Chelation


A particular way that ions and molecules bind metal ions. Chelation therapy is a procedure that involves chelation agents that remove heavy metals from the body. Glutathione is one of these powerful chelation agents, capable of reducing heavy metal toxicity in the body. [12]

5. Diabetes


Caused by the pancreas not producing enough insulin or by the cells not responding properly to the insulin that is produced. Diabetes affects over 29 million Americans according to the CDC, the majority of which have Type 2 Diabetes. Hyperglycemia can decrease mitochondrial Glutathione levels by up to 40%, and increase mitochondrial membrane swelling two-fold. [2]

6. Alzheimer’s Disease


A chronic neurodegenerative disease accounting for up to 70% of dementia cases. Oxidative stress is a known characteristic of Alzheimer’s. By supporting endogenous antioxidants, you can help fight oxidative stress and slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. [3]

7. Liver Disease


With more than 100 different kinds of liver disease, damaged or diseased liver cells are ubiquitous characterizations among the lot. The liver contains the highest concentration of GSH, by supporting Glutathione levels you can help improve liver cell health and function. [2]

8. Viral Infections


Occurring when an individuals body is invaded by pathogenic viruses, there are a vast number of viruses that cause infectious disease. Glutathione is one of body’s primary defenses against viral infection. GSH has been found to inhibit replication of the influenza virus as well as the herpes simplex virus. [17]

9. Rheumatoid Arthritis


A chronic, systemic inflammatory disorder that primarily affects the joints. Characterized by deformed and painful joints, leading to loss of function. Inflammation and oxidative stress are thought to be important to the development of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Supporting antioxidant activity may help those with Rheumatoid Arthritis or those genetically susceptible to it. [19]

10. Autoimmune Diseases


An abnormal immune response of the body against naturally present tissues and substances in the body. Maintaining proper T-cell function is critical for eliciting a healthy immune response. Glutathione levels affect T cell maturation, proliferation and viral replication. [17]

11. Neurodegenerative Disease


An umbrella term for a variety of disorders that lead to a progressive loss of neuronal function, including the death of these neurons. Dysregulation of the GSH-based antioxidant network in any way, may contribute to the development and progression of neurodegenerative diseases. [6]

12. Mitochondrial Function


Described as “the powerhouse of the cell” because they generate most of the cell’s adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is used as a source of chemical energy. Also involved in cell signaling, cellular differentiation, cell death, controlling the cell cycle and cell growth. Mitochondrial Glutathione is the main line of defense to protect against mitochondrial dysfunction. [2]

13. Energy Production


Beginning at the cell, the majority of our cellular energy is produced by the mitochondria in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Mitochondrial GSH is thought to be closely related to its energy-producing capabilities. [9]

14. Muscle Fatigue


The decline in ability of a muscle to generate force, generally occurring as a result of vigorous exercise. Glutathione has been found to induce aerobic metabolism and improve an acidic environment in skeletal muscle during exercise, help preventing exercise-induced fatigue. [15]

15. Cardiovascular Diseases


A class of diseases that involve the heart or blood vessels. Common cardiovascular diseases include: ischemic heart disease, stroke, hypertensive heart disease and congenital heart disease among others. Glutathione plays an important role in protection against cardiovascular disease by mitigating the effects of reactive oxygen species and inflammation. [17]

16. Autism


Latest estimates say 1:68 children born in the United States are on the Autism Spectrum. Individuals with this neurodevelopmental disorder are more vulnerable to oxidative stress and decreased capacity for methylation. Thought to contribute to the development and manifestation of Autism. [4]

17. Parkinson’s Disease

A degenerative disorder of the central nervous system, the cause of which is multifaceted. The mechanism underlying the disease includes an alteration in the pathways that increase oxidative stress. By improving Glutathione levels, you can help to combat the oxidative stress that contributes to the development and progression of Parkinson’s disease. [5]

18. Huntington’s Disease

A neurodegenerative genetic disorder that affects muscle coordination, leading to mental decline and behavioral symptoms. Oxidative damage has been implicated by post mortem studies reporting an increase in oxidized cellular components. [6]

19. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease)

Characterized by muscle stiffness, twitching and gradual muscle wasting, ALS is a fatal disease with no known cure. Some studies have reported that depletion of GSH in vitro is accompanied by motor neuron cell death, stimulating ALS. [6]

20. Lupus

A systemic autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy tissues. The depletion of Glutathione is closely related to the disturbance of apoptosis in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus patients. [7]

21. Celiac Disease

An autoimmune disorder of the small intestine that occurs in genetically predisposed people of all ages. The antioxidant capacity of Celiac patients is significantly reduced, mostly by a depletion of Glutathione. Supplementing Glutathione could be an important complement to classic Celiac disease therapy. [13]

22. Skin Lightening

A popular use for oral Glutathione supplements, it may yield benefits for those yearning for a lighter, more even skin tone. Decreasing melanin production, giving skin a lighter, more translucent appearance. Studies have shown that the results are quite minimal, and require high doses of Glutathione over long periods of time. [16]

23. Cystic Fibrosis

An autosomal recessive disorder characterized by frequent lung infections, sinus infections, poor growth, clubbing of the fingers and toes as well as infertility. GSH appears to play a big role in the etiology, progression and potential treatment of cystic fibrosis. [17]

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