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Glutathione is regarded as the king of all antioxidants because it has amazing and unique ability to recycle other antioxidants! For instance, it protects our body’s vitamin C, which as a result of fighting with bad free radicals eventually itself becomes a form of a radical, but glutathione is able to transform this altered vitamin C back to its antioxidant state! And it can do the same with other antioxidants. No wonder glutathione is praised so much today and studied.
We know that free radicals (damaged atoms) contribute to all kinds of health problems including cancer, fatigue, weak immune system, ageing, neurological problems, poor memory, chronic diseases, etc. Therefore, by neutralising them so effectively glutathione is the most important molecule we need to feel good, get rid of fatigue, have strong immune system, stay healthy and prevent diseases.
Glutathione also protects our body against most dangerous heavy metals such as lead and mercury. High concentration of glutathione in our body is one f the most effective factors to slow down ageing process, prevent cancer, heart disease, dementia, and it is also very beneficial in dealing with neurological conditions such as MS, Parkinson’s, autism or Alzheimer’s disease!
Majority of people today are deficient in glutathione because of the following factors: Chronic stress, anxiety and depression, infections, environmental toxins, consuming refined foods, diet deficient in raw vegetables, fresh fruits and other foods which may increase glutathione levels in our body, genetically modified foods, consuming foods high in refined sugar or containing artificial sweeteners, medications such as antibiotics, stimulants, chemotherapy and radiotherapy, injuries, etc.
Glutathione is also regarded as the best healthy skin promoting and skin lightening supplement according to the black and dark-skinned women who attempt to beautify and lighten theirs skin. Those who use supplements increasing glutathione levels in the body claim that the skin is not only lighter but also smoother, younger and stronger. There is also a study which can confirm it as it found positive results after only one month in a small group of participants, making many dark-skinned women very optimistic and hoping that over extended time of using this antioxidant can whiten the skin. Glutathione may help to whiten the skin because it reduces free radicals in the body that activate enzyme tyrosinase which causes an increase in melanin (skin pigment) production. By reducing the release of skin pigment glutathione slowly lightens the skin. However, to see the results patience is required as it may take 4 to 6 months to notice the difference in the form of a smoother and lighter skin. More on skin lightening >
Although our body produces its own glutathione yet poor diet, stress, pollution, toxins, medications, trauma, ageing, infections or radiation deplete it. As a result we become susceptible to unrestrained cell damage and disintegration from oxidative stress (caused by free radicals), infections or cancer. In addition, our liver gets overloaded with toxins and gets damaged and become unable to do its job.
You probably think now that everything you need is just start taking glutathione in the form of a supplement. Unfortunately, it is not the effective way to achieve the goal because it is a protein and since our body digests proteins we wouldn’t get the benefits if we take glutathione in the form of a tablet or capsule.
Another problem with glutathione supplementation is that by providing the body with glutathione supplements, its natural way of production may get disrupted, since there is another source involved and there are already adequate supplies available. In this way liver may cease generating this most important antioxidant and even develop a form of dependency on supplements.
The good news is we can greatly increase glutathione production in our body stimulating liver to increase its production through taking other amino-acids, antioxidants, vitamins, herbs and foods. In this way we provide our liver with everything it needs to make more of this most important of all antioxidants. All the most important foods, factors and supplements are listed below. The more of them you include the better results you can expect:
Keep in mind that cooking (heating) reduces the glutathione content of vegetables by 30-60%! Canning is even worse as it almost completely destroys glutathione!
Like resveratrol also grape seed extract increases glutathione. Both of them are derived from grapes, but unlike grape seed extract which is derived from seeds, resveratrol is extracted from grape skins. Although both substances have similar actions in the body and increase glutathione, there are some differences between them as far as individual recommended medicinal uses are concerned.
Written by Slawomir (“Swavak”) Gromadzki, MPH
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Any information or product suggested on this website is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any medical condition. Never disregard medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. Consult your primary healthcare physician before using any supplements or making any changes to your regime.