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L-glutamine: Good Or Bad?


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#1 namklak

 
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Posted 25 April 2006 - 01:00 PM

I read that some people are taking amino acid L-Glutamine to promote small intestine healing. Well we are certainly all for that. For myself, I'm hoping someday my intestine will generate lactase again.
But I've seen conflicting information on glutamine. This is an excerpt from one post on this forum
----
The damaging proteins are particularly rich in proline and glutamine (especially the amino acid sequences which are in the following orders: Pro-Ser-Gln-Gln and Gln-Gln-Gln-Pro). As peptides, some such as 33-MER, cannot be broken down any further. In people with celiac disease, 33-MER stimulates T-cells to produce antibodies. The antibodies, in turn, attack the villi in the small intestine, reducing their ability to absorb nutrients. It is important to note that these sequences are NOT found in the proteins of corn and rice."
----
also, see this link
http://www.ncbi.nlm....t_uids=15526039

Personally, I've been gluten-free for two years, and within two weeks of taking L-Glutamine, I started losing weight again, and my stools were getting sticky again. The L-Glutamin I was taking claimed gluten-free on the bottle. So I stopped and a week later, I'm feeling my old gluten-free self.

Being a software engineer, I don't understand any of this... Can someone put this in layman's terms?

Has anyone seen a long-term gain from L-Glutamine?

Thanks,
Bob.
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#2 lorka150

 
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Posted 25 April 2006 - 06:59 PM

Hi Bob,
I was recommended it when I was first diagnosed, and starting taking it. My liver levels went from relatively normal to soaring over 800 (they should be below 40).
As soon as I was off it, they went close to normal again (they are still a little high, but just about 150... Not 800!)

That's evidence enough for me that it wasn't the best choice. There are a few debates on the forum about this if you use the search.
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#3 nettiebeads

 
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Posted 26 April 2006 - 02:22 AM

I use the Rexall brand from WalMart with no problems. I feel better on them than off.
Annette
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#4 mouse

 
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Posted 26 April 2006 - 03:58 AM

I hope more people post on this subject. I have been taking L-Glutamine for some time - just as a preventive major, in case of accidental cross contamination. I only take one pill in the morning. I am wondering if my energy levels started dropping around the same time I started taking it. Three months after I started it, I started having constipation problems, which I had not expierenced since going gluten free a year and a half before I started the L-Glutamine. I never thought that there might be a correlation and now I wonder.
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#5 utdan

 
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Posted 24 May 2006 - 08:27 PM

I just started taking a L-glutamine supplement and have been feeling worse. It is made by TwinLab. I'll have to stop/start taking it again to double check.
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#6 KaitiUSA

 
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Posted 25 May 2006 - 07:06 AM

I think L-glutamine is a really good thing for your body to help heal. I was on that for a while to promote the healing of the intestinal lining.
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#7 abbiekir

 
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Posted 25 May 2006 - 12:56 PM

There is another sequence of amino acids that also stimulates CD4 T-Cells to attack the intestine. That is found in the article http://www.nature.co...nm0300_337.html
That was found back in 2000 but the interesting part of this is that the immune system doesn't attack the amino acid sequence until an enzyme (tTG) comes along and puts in GLUTAMATE right in the middle of the sequence. Why is this interesting? Glutamate happens to be implicated in the cause and progression of Parkinson's disease. If you notice a recent thread on this website, many people have a parent with parkinson's who showed symptoms of celiac. Glutamate has been shown in deceased Parkinson's patients to have plugged up and/or altered the structure of the Blood-Brain-Barrier (the protective sheath of endothelial cells that is supposed to keep out damaging stuff circulating in the blood). If a BBB (blood-brain-barrier) is warped or altered by glutamate or something then of course a person is going to become sensitive to a whole host of foods and substances because they are getting in where they shouldn't be.


Hi Dan,
Thanks for your response from the other thread on Parkinsons
I have done some reading on MSG and wow you have me convinced. Then I came across another thread from this site that a member Rachael has talked a lot about her problems with MSG and she recommended the website MSGmyth which was helpful and I may order the book for recipes but what else is safe to eat? In terms of like food staples or basic stuff? Are there any more webistes you can suggest?
Just to add yes there are times when I did seem to have an intense reaction to emotional issues in my life but not sure if it could be considered out of the ordinary?? but maybe it was the antidepressants doing there thing? not sure?
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Diagnosed with Luekemia in 1995- didn't have to have bone marrow transplant but went through strong chemo for a year- ever since have been in remission

Diagnosed with Graves Disease in Oct. of 2004

Diagnosed with IBS in 2001- ever since then had bloating, depression, skin rashes (DH- I assume), stomache pains, heartburn, joint pain and the list goes on - Started doing research of my own on celiac and have been gluten free since November 2004.
Had the blood test came back negative but of course I had been gluten free for 7-8 mos.
I have noticed an enormous improvement bieng gluten free but still suspect I have other food allergies

Mom had breast cancer and is a type II diabetic-
Dad has had Parkinson's since he was 45

A felllow colleague sugested to become a member of this board- it already has helped just by reading through some of the topics i had quesitons on so I am very thankful to have found all of you.

Abbie

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Posted 25 May 2006 - 02:10 PM

I have been taking L-Glutamine since last september. I actually just stopped last week because I was having surgery and the strange thing is I feel better. But it was gall bladder surgery so I don't know. Ugh! this stuffis so confusing.

I am embarassed to say that I don't understand much of the above posts. I think I need it in "L-Glutamine for Dummies" language. :P
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#9 WorshipfulHeart

 
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Posted 25 May 2006 - 03:01 PM

I have a friend that has been studying amino acids, what they are used for and what they will do for your body. I have taken a few and have given some to my daughters. One thing that she is constantly telling me is that amino acids should not be taken constantly. YOur body naturally produces amino acids, when you have lower levels, you take the extras for a boost until your body regulates itself and then you stop taking the amino acid- regardless of which one it is. If you are taking too much then you will begin getting the reverse effects. I had been giving my daughter, who is gluten intolerant, an amino acid complex. She took it for about a month and a half and did fine. Just this week I have noticed some regression of symtoms so I took her off of them and she is doing well.
Another example of this , my friend was taking tyrosine for tiredness and lack of energy, it helped a lot at first but after a few weeks she began getting really tired again. She got off of the tyrosine and is fine now. Amino acids should not be taken for months or years at a time - as I have stated too much of one will cause an imbalance and give you the opposite results. Some people need that reregulating boost for a couple of weeks or a couple of months, but generally no more than that. I am by no means an expert in this but this is my basic understanding from someone who has become well versed and experienced in amino acid therapy.

Hope this helps.
God Bless!
Angela <><
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#10 utdan

 
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Posted 25 May 2006 - 03:02 PM

Hi Dan,
Thanks for your response from the other thread on Parkinsons
I have done some reading on MSG and wow you have me convinced. Then I came across another thread from this site that a member Rachael has talked a lot about her problems with MSG and she recommended the website MSGmyth which was helpful and I may order the book for recipes but what else is safe to eat? In terms of like food staples or basic stuff? Are there any more webistes you can suggest?
Just to add yes there are times when I did seem to have an intense reaction to emotional issues in my life but not sure if it could be considered out of the ordinary?? but maybe it was the antidepressants doing there thing? not sure?





I really don't know why I chose to talk about glutamate in this thread (not enough sleep maybe). Anyways you can message me or make a new thread for everyone's benefit.

I highly recommend the book "Excitoxins --The Taste That Kills" by Dr. Russel L. Blaylock, Nuerosurgeon. His stuff is quoted by many doctors online. A good sample of the book can be found at: www.aapsonline.org/jpands/hacienda/excito.html

This MSG thing is really pretty scary. Powerful business is pushing it, but I don't want to get started on the FDA conspiracy thing. Online sources claim that any prepared foods that say "natural flavors" or "spices" or "extracts" or some sites even claim that anything that has been enriched with vitamins contains MSG. I don't currently know how much of all this is true but I'm going with the consensus on the web. I would like to be able to find a few industry professionals through the web and get their comments on how prevalent is MSG added to foods.
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Dan


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#11 clock

 
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Posted 05 December 2010 - 09:26 AM

These are some thoughts; please take at face value as an offer for clarification with no guarantees for accuracy, either on my part or on the part of the authors cited.

=====================
Summary of below:
=====================
- Glutamine helps to repair intestinal damage if it exists.
- Glutamine may become "conditionally essential" (that is, your body may require supplementation) during certain disease states/healing/etc.
- Short-term/as-needed use is thought to be safe in otherwise healthy (ie, no serious organ problems) people (for celiac disease, just make sure it is gluten-free).
- Long-term risks, if any, are unknown; it would be reasonable to assume its use is only needed for active recovery from damage, after which your body should be able to make what it needs from there.

=====================
Explanation of DNA structure and what Glutamine is:
=====================

Most of the body's functions occur through proteins. The function of the protein has much to do with its three-dimensional folded structure. Gluten itself is a composite of two proteins.

Proteins are made up of amino acids. Amino acids are made up of bases.

- DNA is made up of four bases (A,C,G,T) in different three-letter combinations.

- Every three bases are interpreted to make an amino acid(eg, CAA and CAG make glutamine; UGU and UGC make Cysteine).

- There will be a region that marks "start" and a region that marks "stop". The body continues to interpret these three-letter codes, making amino acid after amino acid, creating a longer and longer chain of amino acids until it is told to stop. Most are very, very long. (Just a made-up example, Ala-Cys-Asp-Glu is what four in a row could look like, although I'm not sure that particular sequence is meaningful).

- This resulting chain of amino acids is a protein that has some use/function in the body.


From http://en.wikipedia....rd_amino_acids:
"There are 22 standard amino acids, but only 21 are found in eukaryotes. Of the twenty-two, twenty are directly encoded by the universal genetic code. Humans can synthesize 11 of these 20 from each other or from other molecules of intermediary metabolism, but the other 9 essential amino acids (histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine) must be consumed in the diet. The remaining two, selenocysteine and pyrrolysine, are incorporated into proteins by unique synthetic mechanisms"


In the purest sense, it is not the amino acid that has an impact, it is the combination of amino acids (more properly, the final, folded, three-dimensional protein) that has a function.

Here are the amino acids: http://en.wikipedia....ard_amino_acids

=====================
What does it do?
=====================
A few Wikipedia highlights on Glutamine:

"Glutamine plays a role in a variety of biochemical functions including:
* Protein synthesis, as any other amino acid.
* Regulation of acid-base balance in the kidney by producing ammonium.[3]
* Cellular energy, as a source, next to glucose.[4]
* Nitrogen donation for many anabolic processes.[2]
* Carbon donation, as a source, refilling the citric acid cycle.[5]"


"The most eager consumers of glutamine are the cells of intestines,[2] the kidney cells for the acid base balance, activated immune cells[7] and many cancer cells.[5] In respect to the last point mentioned, different glutamine analogues such as DON, Azaserine or Acivicin are tested as anti-cancer drugs."

"In catabolic states of injury and illness, glutamine becomes conditionally-essential (requiring intake from food or supplements). Glutamine has been studied extensively over the past 1015 years and has been shown to be useful in treatment of serious illnesses, injury, trauma, burns, and treatment-related side-effects of cancer as well as in wound healing for postoperative patients.[8] Glutamine is also marketed as a supplement used for muscle growth in weightlifting, bodybuilding, endurance, and other sports. Evidence indicates that glutamine when orally loaded may increase plasma HGH levels by stimulating the anterior pitutitary gland.[9] In biological research, L-glutamine is commonly added [10] to the media in cell culture."

"It is also known that glutamine has various effects in reducing healing time after operations. Hospital-stay times after abdominal surgery can be reduced by providing parenteral nutrition regimes containing high amounts of glutamine to patients. Clinical trials have revealed that patients on supplementation regimes containing glutamine have improved nitrogen balances, generation of cysteinyl-leukotrienes from polymorphonuclear neutrophil granulocytes, and improved lymphocyte recovery and intestinal permeability (in postoperative patients), in comparison to those that had no glutamine within their dietary regime, all without any side-effects.[11]"

"Glutamine is the most abundant naturally occurring, non-essential amino acid in the human body and one of the few amino acids that directly cross the blood-brain barrier.[12] In the body, it is found circulating in the blood as well as stored in the skeletal muscles. It becomes conditionally essential (requiring intake from food or supplements) in states of illness or injury.[8]"

"Dietary sources of L-glutamine include beef, chicken, fish, eggs, milk, dairy products, wheat, cabbage, beets, beans, spinach, and parsley. Small amounts of free L-glutamine are also found in vegetable juices and fermented foods, such as miso.[13][unreliable source?]"

"In recent studies, glutamine-enriched diets have been linked with intestinal effects including maintenance of gut barrier function and cell differentiation. This may relate to the fact that the intestinal extraction rate of glutamine is higher than that for other amino acids, and is therefore thought to be the most viable option when attempting to alleviate conditions relating to the gastrointestinal tract. These conditions were discovered within the gut between glutamine-enriched and non-glutamine-enriched diets. However, even though glutamine is thought to have "cleansing" properties and effects, it is unknown to what extent glutamine has clinical benefits, due to the varied concentrations of glutamine in varieties of food.[14]"


=====================
Safety:
=====================

There are no long-term studies (that I know of) on glutamine, but short-term studies suggest it is safe in adults and infants (Peter J. Garlick. Assessment of the Safety of Glutamine and Other Amino Acids. Journal of Nutrition. 2001;131:2556S-2561S. The American Society for Nutritional Sciences.) The author comments on the safety of high-protein diets, but that is both disputed for otherwise healthy adults in the scientific field when we are not discussing extreme cases (in the context of this comment, extreme would go well beyond the long-term diet prescribed by Atkin's).

The following is not from a reliable source:
http://www.digitalna...eat/T73593.html

"Most clinicians who are using the L-glutamine to support repair of the intestinal tract are recommending that this supplement be taken on an empty stomach. If however, significant intestinal problems are noted when taken alone then using with foods may be better tolerated."

"The major use for high-dose glutamine would be to repair gastrointestinal injury. In such cases, short-term use is advised. Glutamine has recently been shown to produce extreme hypoglycemia, even more so than leucine, which is known to produce fatal hypoglycemia in infants."

"The reason Chinese Restaurant Syndrome is not seen with glutamine challenge is that the glutamate receptors in the lungs and esophagus are stimulated by glutamate, not glutamine. The glutamine must be converted first and this occurs primarily in the brain."

"The only safe situation for long-term glutamine use is in the vigorous athlete. Glutamine is used as a muscle fuel, so that vigorous exercise will consume most of the glutamine before it can accumulate in the brain."
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#12 Skylark

 
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Posted 05 December 2010 - 01:06 PM

Did you see that warning from moderators not to bump old threads? This is exactly what they were talking about.
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#13 Rocky Road

 
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Posted 30 May 2011 - 01:31 AM

Hi Clock,

Thanks for the info on the Glutamine. I have been having severe problems with hypoglycemia since I restarted the glutamine. It makes sense.
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