Glutathione is an antioxidant used by every cell in the body, critical in proper bodily detoxification. Beyond that, it’s important in many functions including: making DNA, supporting the immune system, facilitating enzyme function, transporting mercury out of the brain, regenerating vitamins C and E, helping the liver and gallbladder deal with fats, and many other important health functions.
Unlike most antioxidants that your body produces, Glutathione is made in your liver and is comprised of glutamine, glycine, and cysteine. Low levels of glutathione is linked with many diseases, and people with insulin resistance tend to have lower levels of glutathione, especially in advanced stages of diabetes. The body produces lower levels as we age, which has shown to directly link to problems of weight management and insulin resistance.
As important as this antioxidant is, it’s easily reduced in many ways including poor nutrition, environmental toxins, stress, insomnia, and even medications like Tylenol. There are many ways to increase your levels of glutathione including IV, inhalant, topically and orally. Although the latter can be done in many forms, powder capsules have been studied and shown to be the least effective method. Lozenge and sublingual liquid proving more effective for absorption. You can aid in natural production within your own body by consuming foods rich in sulfur (like cruciferous vegetables, nuts, legumes and animal proteins), and supplementing with milk thistle and N-acetyl cysteine which is needed for glutathione absorption.
Glutathione and oxidative stress
Oxidative stress is caused by an imbalance of free radical production and capability within the body to fight it. This imbalance may lead to the development of diseases like diabetes, cancer, and rheumatoid arthritis. Deficiency in glutathione levels increases oxidative stress, while keeping your antioxidant levels high will reduce the damage and even create resistance to oxidative stress within cancer cells. Particularly individuals with autoimmune diseases, the chronic inflammation associated with AI is going to increase oxidative stress. As AI diseases attack the mitochondria in specific cells, glutathione directly protects cell integrity.
Children with autism have higher levels of oxidative damage and substances like mercury, and lower levels of glutathione within their brain. Research testing oral supplementation and transdermal application of glutathione showed improvements of cysteine, plasma sulfate and glutathione levels through the body. Implications showing that long-term, monitored use of glutathione may improve autism symptoms.
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Glutathione and liver health
Both in alcohol induced fatty liver and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, glutathione has been shown to be a key component in preventing onset and improving conditions of fatty liver disease. Especially when given intravenously, glutathione improved protein, enzyme, and bilirubin levels in the blood and reduced levels of cell death in the liver.
Glutathione and skin
One of the most popular usages of glutathione across the world is for skin lightening and skin bleaching for cultures and populations who aesthetically favor light or very fair skin. What should be known about those who intend to use glutathione topically or orally for melanin reduction (skin bleaching) is that it requires high dosages of high quality ingredients and the results are temporary. It’s becoming more popular to receive IV drips of glutathione for this purpose but beyond the fact that it is costly to do so, long term use may actually prove to damage the liver dramatically. But in all, not enough research is done long term and with broad enough sample sizes to prove safety of intravenous and oral dosing.
In other research, glutathione was tested for its impact on wrinkles and sun damage. Though continued studies must be performed, promising results were shown in improving skin elasticity and healing sun damage for both sun-exposed and sun-protected skin.
N-Acetyl L-Cysteine (NAC)
N-acetyl cysteine is a supplement form of cysteine, which is key in replenishing glutathione and regulating brain glutamate levels, thus boosting brain health. The neurotransmitter glutamate is linked to learning, behavior, and memory and is required for normal brain function. But when the balance of healthy levels of each are thrown off, and glutamate levels rise too much and glutathione levels are reduced brain damage can occur, and even contribute to mental health issues like bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, OCD and addictive behavior. Supplementing with NAC may in fact decrease symptoms of disorder and depression, improving dopamine function. Success has been seen in using NAC in treating severe cases of OCD. Promising research has been done in animal studies that suggest NAC may reduce the loss of cognitive ability in Alzheimer’s.
Because of the immune boosting power of NAC supplementation with its impact on glutathione levels within the body, it’s been showing to significantly increase natural killer cells and suppress reproduction of serious AI viruses including HIV.
We believe that just supplementing with glutathione won’t be enough for your body to reap the rewards of this incredibly powerful antioxidant. So within Baseline+ we’ve made sure to provide adequate levels of N-Acetyl L-Cysteine in the ingredient deck so that your body is able to produce and maintain higher levels of Glutathione. Lifestyle changes including stress reduction, high quality sleep, and healthy food choices in combination with Baseline + daily will support healthier immune system, brain function, and more youthful looking skin.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.