Glutamine can be considered a controversial topic, since it can be found in many dietary forms such as; protein powders, eggs, meat as well as vegetables. It has been heavily debated whether or not supplementation is necessary.
The general consensus is that Glutamine is an essential amino acid and that it cannot be provided in your regular BCAA supplements, thus body builders should also consume it as an additional supplement.
Is Glutamine an essential amino acid?
Glutamine is dubbed as an indispensable amino acid as it’s naturally synthesised, meaning we don’t require a direct source of support and can go without Glutamine rich foods. Whereas essential amino acids cannot be produced and must be found in our diet or supplemented.
Do I need it? Well yes and no.
Synthesises is the breakdown of multiple other chemicals which then formulate into others. Glutamine is abundantly found within our body as we produce it. Its production is found in many parts of the body such as the brain, kidney, muscle tissue and liver. Only when our natural levels of Glutamine have decreased via extraneous physical activities or mental stress, will we require direct dietary or supplementary support. Simply resting will enable our body’s to indiscriminately produce it naturally over time.
Will it help my performance or recovery?
Yes Glutamine will help our body recover, work harder and build muscle mass. But studies on supplementation combined with resistance training found no improvement in strength, body composition or muscle degradation. These test were in healthy young males, meaning that we should be able to produce enough Glutamine required to workout daily and not see a noticeable drop to then require supplementation. This obviously doesn’t cover everybody. If you working out over the age of 40 or suffering from an illness that limits your ability to create Glutamine, then supplementation of Glutamine products may show an increase in your natural levels.
Conclusion to whether or not you should take it
Glutamine is found in a lot of what we consume as well as synthesised. Whether or not you should take it is always up to you, if you exercise for hours on a daily basis or suffering from an illness or at a certain age limiting your ability to generate a sufficient amount of Glutamine to recover, we would recommend supplementation. It is important to know you are doing no harm to your body by supplementing. Remember; food before any supplement.
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