T Nation

Benefits of L-Glutamine

Hey,
Im new taking a glutamine supp. and i was wondering whats all its benifits?
I know its anti-canibalic effect<-however ya spell it. but does it do more? I researched and heard things like it speeds up protien synthesis… is that true?

thanks

Not much if you already eat a high protein diet its a very abundant amino. Sure very much needed but easily received from eating

phill

Immune system and restoration of muscle glycogen when on a low-carb diet. Unless I’m trying to prevent myself from getting sick or on a low-carb diet, I don’t find it of much value.

Read this:

http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=461188

And this:

http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459884

Both by Dave Barr. He doesn’t think much of glutamine as a stand-alone supplement.

From my understanding is that its a non-essential amino acid, shown to increase muscle hydration and aid in the transport of nutrients to muscles much in the same way as creatine does.

Glutamine has been deemed rather useless as of late. By Dave Barr, John Berardi, etc.

It used to be in Surge and has recently been taken out completely…if that give you an idea.

[quote]sven33 wrote:
It used to be in Surge and has recently been taken out completely…if that give you an idea.[/quote]

This isn’t really the case as the whey protein hydrolyslate used in Surge is naturally very high in glutamine.

[quote]TC wrote:
Read this:

http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=461188

And this:

http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459884

Both by Dave Barr. He doesn’t think much of glutamine as a stand-alone supplement.

[/quote]

Thnaks TC for the link
David Barr wrote:
The other time that glutamine supplementation may be beneficial to bodybuilders is when on a low carbohydrate diet. Glutamine can not only be converted to glucose, but may also have an anapleurotic effect.(5)
In other words, it may replenish metabolic intermediates, in this case, ATP (especially important when you’re lacking carbs). This is another article unto itself, so I’ll leave it at that for now.

Thibs Reccomends it in his recent article. I might experiment with it when I start on the Get Shredded Diet next week.

[quote]sven33 wrote:
Glutamine has been deemed rather useless as of late. By Dave Barr, John Berardi, etc.[/quote]

Really? Is it useless all the time? What is your authority for that position? Or is it enough for your favorite author to tell you what to think?

Glutamine’s usefulness has been debated for a very long time. There are disinterested experts (re: people not working for supplement companies) who are pro and con. One study showed that it helped burn victims, as glutmanine “boosts” the immune system:
http://www.cncahealth.com/nutritional-news.htm?org=cnca&page=newswire/newswire_2003_12_18_9.cfm

Could someone under a lot of stress and who is training hard benefit from an immune system “boost”? If so, could glutamine provide that “boost”?

The only thing “useless” is uncritically quoting what you read on the Internet.

Thanks for the plug sven!
I’d say that rather than simply being “deemed”, it is better to say that “it has been shown to be largely ineffectual for growth.” That way it is understood that it not merely an opinion but an evidence-derived conclusion.

I know I know, I’m totally nitpicking here, but some people get worked up over the details and we have to help them sleep at night.

You’re also right in that it took most people a while to get over the shock when I introduced the evidence 5 years ago, but general consensus is in line with the data now. Such is human nature.

[quote]sven33 wrote:
Glutamine has been deemed rather useless as of late. By Dave Barr, John Berardi, etc.
[/quote]

[quote]CaliforniaLaw wrote:

Really? Is it useless all the time?
[/quote]

Oh come on. This is just silly. Surely you must realize that you’re creating an argument by putting words in his mouth. Straw man anyone?

Probably the overwhelming evidence that I presented several years ago and the lack of refuting data since.

The data are presented in such a way that everyone can make up their own mind, rather than having to spend 30 hours on PubMed looking up glutamine studies.
[Although in retrospect, those glutamine Barrticles were about as thick as a research paper. lol]

[quote]
Or is it enough for your favorite author to tell you what to think?[/quote]

I’m sure that this is not in reference to me because of the amount of time I devote to discussing, and admonishing readers against, dogma (but it’s important to clear that up for others).

[quote]
Glutamine’s usefulness has been debated for a very long time.[/quote]

I think that the debate has been over for a while. In fact, the whole glutamine discussion feels rather archaic at this point. Sure we can discuss its efficacy for low-carb diets, but otherwise the data seem rather constrained.

[quote]
There are disinterested experts (re: people not working for supplement companies) who are pro and con.[/quote]

I have yet to hear of any real evidence opposing what I presented. And as one of the experts not working for a supplement company, I am able to present the data in an objective manner.

Don’t forget that people who don’t work for supplement companies directly, work for publishers who do. Objective reporting simply isn’t an option in most of this field.

[quote]
One study showed that it helped burn victims, as glutmanine “boosts” the immune system.[/quote]

Did you really just bring this up? The work that I, or anyone else, have performed on burn victims has absolutely no bearing on supplement use in healthy people. This is a weak point in an argument that you created.

In an absence of Calories (or possibly carbs), then I believe that it is possible, but otherwise the data suggest not.

Conclusion: I honestly don’t care if anyone uses glutamine. If people think they feel something from it, then great. But this time Cali, I had to call you on your bullshit.

I actually appreciate your comments, though I think you went a little far afield of what I said. What I wrote early on in this thread was that glutamine was good, if at all, for “Immune system and restoration of muscle glycogen when on a low-carb diet.” My points were very narrow.

Is it your position that a) l-glutamine does nothing for the immune system of “healthy” people and b) is not valuable for people on low-carb diets?

I put “healthy” in quotes, by the way, since a person can be on the verge of sickness and still be “healthy.” My wife just had a horrible flu for five days. Once she showed symptoms, I consumed 25-50 grams of glutamine a day. Despite not doing anything to “quarantine” myself from her infectious cells, I didn’t get sick.

Several years ago I contracted an illness that was putting people into the hospital. I self-medicated with mega doses of l-glutamine, and, again, escaped the worst of it.

While I don’t reason based on anecdotes, my experience seems congruent with this study, among many others:

Indeed, in your very article (Part 2), you approvingly quoted this summary of the research: “Overall, although glutamine obviously plays important metabolic roles within the body, supplementation does not appear to provide consistent beneficial or therapeutic effects, except during certain catabolic situations.” (Emphasis added)

So either you are saying something much broader today, or our disagreement stems from our definitions of “healthy.” Would I say a person under little stress who isn’t around sick people should use l-glutamine? Of course not. Would I say someone on the verge of illness or under significant stress should supplement with it? Yes. Do you disagree with this latter point?

In light of my explanation of my position, I am interested in hearing whether you think we have an disagreement.

Good grief.
I make a short innocent quote and i have been attacked and defended all in the blink of an eye.
Sheesh.

Well Law, i never claimed authority on anything, obviously. I sited two guys who know a hell of a lot more about the issue than i and who ARE authorities on the subject.

Not exactly sure what makes you an authority on anything, really. I should let you tell me what to think instead of them? Is that your main issue?

And i love it. Bitching at me for “quoting what i read on the internet”…as you quote something you’ve read on the internet.

Brilliant.

Dodd Romero recommends 1/2 tablespoon of glutamine three times a day “to help maintain a weight-loss program and reduce the occurrence of obesity-related diseases.”

My personal testimony? Take 5 grams 30-60 minutes pre- and post-workout to speed recovery. I’m new to training, train hard for two hours three times a week and am never soar for more than a day – if that. I partially owe that to glutamine and, of course, taurine as recovery aids.

[quote]sven33 wrote:
And i love it. Bitching at me for quoting what i read on the internet"…as you quote something you’ve read on the internet. Brilliant.[/quote]

There is a difference between reading a scientific study that happens to be on the Internet; and reading an article that is on the Internet. Just like there is a difference between reading a book and reading the Cliff’s Notes. In the former, you and reading and analyzing data on your own. In the latter, you are relying on someone to think for you.

Sure, this doesn’t mean that you need to “spend 30 hours on MedLine” for everything. Life is complicated, and we all don’t have time to become experts on everything. I get that.

But if you make a statement, and can you cannot support that statement with actual scientific data, essentially saying, “So-and-so said it’s no good,” then, yes, Houston, there’s a problem. You simply shouldn’t make arguments you cannot support with evidence. Relying on someone else’s view is not, by the way, evidence.

As I noted, above, your view simply lacked nuance. It’s “worthless” or not depending on one’s unique circumstances. I think even Barr would have to agree that it’s useful for people in the two situations I articulated, above.

If he does disagree, I sure would like to know why.