Glutathione Series Part 2 of 3:
If there were such a thing as a supplement that “does it all”, glutathione would have to be a top contender for the number one spot. Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant that can repair and protect the body from harmful toxins and other dangers we encounter in our polluted environment.
Briefly, Glutathione (GSH) is a tripeptide comprised of three amino acids, cysteine, glutamic acid (ionic salt from glutamate), and glycine. All three of these amino acids are considered to be non-essential, meaning our body synthesizes them.
So if the body produces its own glutathione, then why is it necessary to consume foods or take supplements that support glutathione production? The simple answer: Oxidation.
Oxidation is caused by nutrient-deficit diets, a polluted environment, pharmaceuticals (prescribed and over-the-counter), physical and emotional stress, electromagnetic stress, and radiation.
Oxidative stress is a primary cause of aging, sickness and disease. The oxidation of cholesterol is the root cause of heart disease and arteriosclerosis, not necessarily cholesterol levels as so many believe.
Glutathione is found in every cell of the body. It is thought that the younger you are the more glutathione your body produces. However don’t be misled by statements such as this because there are two very different explanations for decreased Glutathione levels:
- As we get older glutathione decreases due to the “normal aging process”, and
- The oxidative stress of our environment, the chemicals in our food, and both normal and unnecessary emotional stressors in life, cause glutathione levels in the body to decrease, thus compromising our immune systems and the body’s ability to detoxify.
And although the first explanation may be grounded in some truth, the second is far more logical. In fact, it is because of decreased immune function that we have an increase in all major diseases today!
Glutathione is vital for protecting against:
- Heart disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
Undisputedly, glutathione is needed in the body not just for normal functioning of the immune system, but also for optimal functioning. Remember the term oxidation? Glutathione is ‘the’ master anti-oxidant that aids all other anti-oxidants, such as Vitamin C and Vitamin E, in free radical scavenging.
For years, vitamins have been touted as free-radical killers and not only has this been proven by research, we now know that Glutathione is the most valuable player of them all! Imagine if you would, a football team. Each and every player has a vital role in moving the team toward its major goal—to win. If we were to think of each player as a different supplement, both offensive and defensive, a very interesting analogy would come about. When a team’s offense is on the field, they need to block or counter every move the defense makes in order to stay alive in the game. And which player is the one that is most often considered the MVP (most valuable player) on the winning team? The quarterback. A great quarterback can actually help the other players to excel in their roles on the field. In other words, he helps his teammates shine.
And the quarterback in the body’s fight against oxidation, and thus disease, is glutathione. The goal of glutathione and all of the free-radical scavengers in the body is simple—life!
The correlation between glutathione and the fight against free radicals has been known for quite some time, so it is unfortunate that a majority of the general public likely hasn’t heard of it. To learn more, contact a New Leaf specialist today.