Glutathione (GSH) is an important antioxidant in plants, animals, fungi, and some bacteria and archaea. GSH is capable of preventing damage to important cellular components caused by reactive oxygen species such as free radicals, peroxides, lipid peroxides and heavy metals.  It is composed of the amino acids cysteine, glutamate and glycine. It is produced by the body in the liver and is the main detoxification pathway in the liver, kidneys, lungs, intestinal lining and other organs. Dietary protein obviously contributes to glutathione synthesis. Broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, kale, garlic, onions, and other “stinky” cruciferous and allium vegetables contain sulfur compounds that also boost glutathione levels. Other dietary sources include avocado and walnuts.
In the body GSH is responsible for: (Among several more)
- Regulation of cell growth and division
- DNA synthesis and repair (repairs mutated DNA)
- Protein synthesis (allows proper pairings to form)
- Transports amino acids in and out of cells
- Bridges chemical reactions between some enzymes
- Transforms carcinogens to unreactive compounds to be eliminated from the body
- Interacts with drugs and poisons to neutralize and break them down; eliminate from body
- Joins with heavy metals to neutralize and eliminate them
- Enhances the immune response by interacting with both T and B cells
- Resistance to UV radiation; decreases radiation damage
Glutathione supplementation, IV and oral, is used in Lyme disease to enhance the activity of immune cells and function as an antioxidant within them. It also supports the detoxification process at the research has shown, patients with acute and chronic conditions are severely glutathione deficient and usually benefit from even slight elevation of GSH levels. The research, however, is limited.
Many diseases are linked to glutathione deficiencies, including Parkinson’s Disease. Some people lack the enzymes to make glutathione because of inherited genetics or blood problems they have most of the research done with it shows that oral Glutathione breaks down and oxidizes in the digestive system and only some of it reaches the cells.
Some conditions call for more intensive doses. Conditions associated with dramatic increases in oxidative stress, Lyme disease!!! This is best accomplished intravenously (IV), bypassing the digestive tract delivering it to target tissues. The dosage range depends on the individual patient.
What depletes glutathione?? You’d be amazed.