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Glutamine

Illustration

Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid (protein building block) in the body and is involved in more metabolic processes than any other amino acid. Glutamine is converted to glucose when more glucose is required by the body as an energy source. It serves as a source of fuel for cells lining the intestines. Without it, these cells waste away. It is also used by white blood cells and is important for immune function.

Where is it found?

Glutamine is found in many foods high in protein, such as fish, meat, beans, and dairy products.

Glutamine has been used in connection with the following conditions (refer to the individual health concern for complete information):

Science Ratings Health Concerns
3Stars

Pre- and post-surgery health

2Stars

Athletic performance (for prevention of post exercise infection in performance athletes)

Diarrhea

HIV support (in combination with arginine and HMB)

Immune function (for post-exercise infection prevention in endurance athletes)

Infection (for prevention of post exercise infection in performance athletes)

1Star

Alcohol withdrawal support

Gastritis

HIV support

Peptic ulcer

3Stars Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.
2Stars Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.
1Star For an herb, supported by traditional use but minimal or no scientific evidence. For a supplement, little scientific support and/or minimal health benefit.

Who is likely to be deficient?

Few healthy people are glutamine deficient, in part because the body makes its own. During fasting, starvation, cirrhosis, critical illnesses in general, and weight loss associated with AIDS and cancer, however, deficiencies often develop.

How much is usually taken?

Healthy people do not need to supplement with glutamine. A physician should be consulted for the supplemental use of glutamine for the support of serious health conditions.

Are there any side effects or interactions?

No significant side effects have been reported in glutamine studies.

Are there any drug interactions?
Certain medicines may interact with glutamine. Refer to drug interactions for a list of those medicines.

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