What Is Glutamine And Do You Need It?
One supplement that you may have heard people talking about before and might have wondered yourself if you should be using is Glutamine.
Glutamine can be purchased on its own or you can often find it in combination products such as protein powders, branched chain amino acids, and in some recovery related products as well.
But what does Glutamine do? And more importantly, should you be using it?
Let’s go over some of the main facts to know about Glutamine so that you can clear up any confusion you may have over this supplement.
What Is Glutamine?
Let’s start by going over what Glutamine is. Glutamine itself is an amino acid, which is a building block that goes into making protein.
As such, you will be taking in some Glutamine each and every day when you eat your normal mixed diet containing chicken, fish, eggs, red meat or other dairy products.
Because it is an all-natural substance that you are putting into your body every day, it’s one supplement that tends to produce very few side effects, if any at all – assuming you use it in a reasonable dose.
The problem many active individuals experience however is that they don’t get enough Glutamine in from their diet to keep up with the heavy demands training places on them.
How Does Glutamine Work?
Which now brings us to what Glutamine does. Glutamine is an amino acid that plays a key role in immune function, which is the part of your body that helps you recover from illness, stress and injury.
When your immune system is down, you’ll be more prone to getting sick or simply just feeling run-down and lacking in the strength you normally have.
Glutamine therefore helps to keep your immune system strong, keeping you feeling your best.
Because intense exercise is a form of stress you are placing on your body, this stress adds up and can deplete your Glutamine stores.
As a result, you may find that you begin feeling burnout or even start suffering from over-training syndrome or other injuries that interfere with your workout progress.
By adding more Glutamine to your diet through supplemental form, you can help ensure that you are taking in enough and this will help maximise the recovery you get from your workout sessions.
Who Should Use Glutamine?
So this said, who should use Glutamine? Is it something that you need?
The first group of individuals who would be advised to consider using Glutamine are those who aren’t consuming that much meat or animal based products in their diet (such as vegans, vegetarians or part-time vegetarians).
As these are the foods where Glutamine is most often found, if you aren’t consuming them often, chances are you are already low.
The second group of individuals who would be well served by using Glutamine are those who are training very intensely.
If you are doing more than 3-4 hard workouts per week consisting of interval anaerobic training and/or weight lifting, chances are good your diet isn’t providing as much Glutamine as you’d ideally need.
Likewise, if you are participating in high level team sport training of any sort, that too will increase the total stress and demands on your body, potentially meaning you need to supplement with Glutamine.
How Much Glutamine Do You Need?
So if you find yourself as someone who does need Glutamine, how much should you use?
Standard dosage recommendation is set at 5-10 grams per day and this should be taken in right after your workout session or it can be taken in before bed as well.
These are the main facts to know about Glutamine. When used properly, it can help give you an edge in terms of physical recovery and help you reach that next level in your performance.