Is Glutathione dependant on Magnesium? - NL-012
Despite not receiving much attention from the medical community, Glutathione is one of the body's most powerful anti-oxidants. Although not as widely known as other anti-oxidants such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E, lycopene and resveratrol found in red wine, Glutathione has incredible capabilities as a detoxifier, immune booster, and anti-oxidant.
The body produces Glutathione as an endogenous anti-oxidant, unlike exogenous anti-oxidants such as Vitamin C and E which are ingested through the diet. Glutathione is believed to be the most potent of all the endogenous anti-oxidants, present in every cell, but especially concentrated in liver cells. This compound serves as a primary defense system against the harm caused by free radicals. It also recycles and reactivates other anti-oxidants that have been rendered unstable after neutralizing free radicals. It is no wonder why Glutathione is referred to as a 'Master Anti-oxidant' by health professionals.
The molecule Glutathione is composed of three amino acids, cysteine, glycine and glutamine, which are all important for preserving good health and warding off ailments. Maintaining an adequate amount of Glutathione is of paramount importance for our overall wellbeing.
Main functions of Glutathione
Oxidative damage to cellular structures, such as DNA, proteins, and lipids, caused by free radicals is thought to have drastic consequences on the body, including premature ageing and the development of chronic diseases like heart disease, cancer, dementia, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, cataracts, and diabetes. According to medical professionals, keeping glutathione levels in the optimal range can help to guard against these illnesses and promote longevity. Moreover, Glutathione has many other vital roles aside from shielding cells from free radicals. Here is a brief overview.
- Encourages cell development and repair
- Assists DNA synthesis and repair
- Acts as a powerful anti-oxidant to safeguard the body from oxidative damage and related chronic health conditions.
- Enhances immune system functions.
- Has a major role in the first and second phase of liver detoxification, which is a strong chelator of heavy metals and toxins.
- Guards from harmful radiation
- Revitalizes other anti-oxidants such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium and Carotenoids
- Slows ageing
- Increases energy levels
Factors in glutathione depletion
As we age, our body's natural production of glutathione – an antioxidant and detoxifier – is reduced. Research has identified a strong connection between ageing and diminished glutathione levels. Additionally, environmental toxins, radiation, antibiotic abuse, chronic stress, infections, harmful lifestyle choices, and an unhealthy diet composed of genetically modified, processed and artificial sweeteners can lead to a greater amount of oxidative damage and an even greater depletion of glutathione. This can leave you exposed to cellular degeneration due to free radicals and a liver overloaded with toxins, leading to weakened immunity, difficulty eliminating toxins and the potential for chronic diseases.
What is the best way to increase glutathione levels in the body? Supplements are available, but absorption is low and they may actually hinder the body's ability to make its own glutathione. Intravenous supplementation is effective, but costly, invasive, and not readily accessible. Fortunately, certain whole foods can provide a boost in glutathione levels, making them a convenient and reliable solution.
Foods that help to increase glutathione production
Whole vegetables, fruits, and spices, as well as certain animal products, have either a high concentration of glutathione or the elements which the body can use to create the substance.
- Whey protein that has not undergone denaturation, obtained from cows that have been fed on grass, and has not been altered with any additives.
- Brazil nuts, walnuts
- Eggs, fish, and other forms of meat, as well as a variety of fresh vegetables and fruits – like squash, zucchini, spinach, carrots, potatoes, bell peppers, parsley, tomatoes, papaya, mango, banana, peach, and strawberries
- Foods high in sulphur - garlic, onions and veggies like cauliflower, radish, and cabbage
- Mustard greens, turnips, radishes, broccoli, collard greens, Kale and Brussel sprouts
- Milk thistle, rosemary, turmeric, cardamom, black cumin, cinnamon and herbs and spices
Glutathione and magnesium
Magnesium is an essential nutrient that is necessary for the body to perform over 300 bio-chemical processes essential for life and wellbeing. It is a significant factor in energy production, skeletal integrity, protein construction, and the transmission of nerve signals in the brain and muscles. This is vital for the muscles to function correctly, the heart to beat properly, and the central nervous system to get adequate nourishment.
The benefit of magnesium lies in its role in the synthesis of glutathione. This mineral acts as a cofactor in the enzymes which contribute to glutathione's production, as well as its antioxidant capabilities. Particular mention must be made of gamma glutamyl transpeptidase (GGT), which is the only enzyme in the gamma-glutamyl cycle situated outside of the plasma cell membrane. This enzyme breaks down the extracellular glutathione and releases the key cysteine for glutathione reassembly. If magnesium levels are low, free radicals will be generated and the glutathione stores of the body will be reduced.