Glutamine is one of the eleven amino acids essential for the body to fully grow muscle mass, restore and function correctly on all levels. However, many athletes purchase such supplements in pharmacy. How reasonable is this step? What are the benefits of glutamine, and what contraindications should be kept in mind?
It has already been stated that this amino acid is conditionally essential and can be synthesized by the body in full. But not always. With active training, glutamine volume decreases significantly, and a substantial deficiency of this amino acid appears. As a result, athletic performance is reduced, and immunity is weakened. It has already been proven that adding 5 grams of this element to the diet can significantly reduce catching a cold.
Here is the list of renowned properties of glutamine:
- It gives energy to the athlete, without which it isn’t easy to count on a full-fledged result from training;
- It improves brain function and activates mental activity;
- It enables the process of protein formation, which contributes to a rapid increase in muscle mass and an increase in strength;
- It stops catabolism – the destruction tissues of organs and muscle fibers;
- It cleanses the body of toxins;
- It participates in the production of growth hormone, which serves as a trigger in the increase of muscle mass;
- It relieves stress;
- it neutralizes harmful ammonia in the body (which is formed during the breakdown of proteins) and effectively removes it;
- it makes it impossible to get overtraining;
- it takes part in strengthening the immunity;
- it serves as a neurotransmitter, transferring the necessary impulses to muscle fibers;
- it reduces the formation of subcutaneous and visceral fat;
- It effectively opposes liver cirrhosis.
Benefits For Athletes
Glutamine is an indispensable tool in the training process for both professional and novice athletes. Based on the above material, some of the most useful functions for an athlete should be highlighted:
- It is believed that taking this amino acid accelerates the production of growth hormone several times. For this, it is enough to take about 5 grams of glutamine before bedtime.
- During a workout, glutamine is utilized by the body five times faster, so the body needs to replenish this amino acid constantly. Otherwise, catabolic processes are launched, consisting of the breakdown of muscle protein in the body. At the same time, glutamine effectively fights against the main culprit of catabolism – cortisol.
- Many amino acids can convert to glutamine, and then to alanine. The latter enters the liver and takes an active part in the formation of glucose, after which it enters the muscles. The conclusion is that the amino acid we are considering is a powerful energy source for the body.
Glutamine is undoubtedly beneficial. Still, since we are talking about the relevance of its purchase in a pharmacy, we should know the indications prescribed in the instructions (as a rule, they do not say anything about use in sports). So, L-glutamine is used for psychosis, schizophrenia, epilepsy, mental exhaustion, and insomnia. Besides, this amino acid is recommended in case of progressive myopathy, poliomyelitis, cerebral palsy, toxic neuropathy, Down’s disease, etc.
Glutamine, purchased at a pharmacy, has several side effects – vomiting, allergic reactions, nausea, abdominal pain, indigestion, and irritability. Prolonged use of the medication can lead to cracks in the lips, anemia, and the oral mucosa’s irritation.
Glutamine is not recommended for people with the febrile syndrome, hypersensitivity, peptic ulcers (12 duodenal ulcers and stomach), anemia, increased irritability, leukopenia, and liver diseases.
By the way, the above contraindications and side effects are most often indicated by manufacturers «just in case.» As practice shows, glutamine is a rather harmless supplement that provides significant support to an athlete’s body. Of course, before taking the amino acid, it is advisable to consult a specialist.
As for dosage, the directions on the packaging and recommendations of athletes may vary. For example, professional athletes should take 10-15 grams before and after the training. As for the pharmaceutical recommendations, the situation here is a bit different. Adults are supposed to take one gram 2-3 times a day. Tablets are taken 20-30 minutes before a meal. But here, a lot depends on the purposes of intake.
Thus, there is nothing wrong with taking pharmacy glutamine. With the right dosage, it is very effective. But you must consult with a specialist before taking the supplement.