Glutathione has been hailed the mother of all antioxidants.The more we learn about this powerhouse the more we realize how life sustaining it is. Glutathione is a simple tripeptide made from the amino acids glycine, glutamate and cysteine. Glutathione is the most abundant and important intracellular antioxidant that helps support health aging by supporting crucial detoxifying process. Glutathione’s major ‘duty’ is to help cells rid themselves of toxins and other intracellular debris that are associated with chronic disease such as cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease and Autism. Glutathione is sticky and grabs on to toxins and helps escort them out of the body.
Glutathione: What Does It DoUnder optimal conditions, glutathione recycles antioxidants (chemicals that block the activity of other chemicals known as free radicals that may seriously damage cells). Glutathione also helps support tissue building and repair and plays a huge role in supporting and maintaining a functional immune system. Healthy levels of glutathione help us sustain optimal physical and mental function by controlling dangerous inflammatory processes that lead to chronic disease. Of note, research has shown that glutathione may be helpful in reducing the side effects of several chemotherapeutic medications.
Glutathione: Where Is It Made
Glutathione: Redox to DetoxEvery living cell participates in the metabolic process known as “redox” (reduction-oxidation). Redox reactions are chemical reactions where atoms oxidative states change due to a transfer of electrons (redox = gaining electrons; oxidation = loss of electrons) between species (atoms and other molecules). Species in this context may sound like the next “Cosmic Thriller” and in one way it is because this transfer of energy makes life as we know it possible! A good example of redox signaling involves glutathione peroxidase, which plays a crucial role in oxidative signaling, protecting the cell against the threatening effects of extreme oxidation.
Glutathione: When Levels DropLow levels of glutathione are associated with cardiovascular disease, autoimmune disorders, arthritis, cancer and autism. Research has shown that depleted levels of glutathione correlate with reduced levels of dopamine, the neurotransmitter which may contribute to the neurodegenerative and cognitive changes observed in Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's.
Glutathione: Why Levels Drop
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High Blood Glutathione Levels Accompany Excellent Physical and Mental Health in Women Ages 60 to 103 Years.
Effect of Zinc Deficiency on Blood Glutathione Levels
Glutathione Redox State Regulates Mitochondrial Reactive Oxygen Production
Mitochondrial Redox Signalling at a Glance
The Effects of Redox Controls Mediated by Glutathione Peroxidases on Root Architecture in Arabidopsis thaliana
Glutathione, Oxidative Stress and Neurodegeneration
Statistical Evaluation of Preventive Use of Glutathione Against Side-Effects of Surgical Adjuvant Chemotherapy in Gastric Cancer Patients
Antioxidants and Cancer Prevention (National Institutes of Health)
Glutathione: In Sickness and in Health