As an antioxidant, glutathione helps to neutralize free radicals and reduce oxidative stress that damages cells. However, unlike most antioxidants that come from plant sources, the human body can make glutathione in the liver. However, it needs the right building material for this. Find out how to increase your glutathione levels.
Why? In lung diseases, it helps to reduce the frequency of wheezing and coughing attacks. This is because NAC increases glutathione levels and thins the secretions in the lungs. NAC is a building material necessary for the production of glutathione.
In 2011, it was proven that NAC is effective in treating health problems such as addiction, compulsive behavior, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
Do you know what surprising uses and properties are glutathione? [CLICK]
How to raise glutathione levels? Reaching for milk thistle is another way, and it's also natural.
Milk thistle comes from a plant called Silybum Marianum. It contains 3 active ingredients, known as silymarin, which is famous for its antioxidant properties.
What's more, many scientific studies have proven that silymarin increases glutathione levels and prevents its loss. Scientists say it works because it prevents cell damage.
You probably won't be surprised that scientists have already linked chronic and excessive alcohol consumption to many health problems. People with alcoholism often experience problems such as brain damage, pancreatitis, and cirrhosis. However, did you know that alcoholism also damages the lungs?
Interestingly, this most likely happens as a result of a decrease in glutathione levels in this organ. The lungs need glutathione to function properly. But that's not all! A healthy lung contains up to 1,000 times more glutathione than other parts of the body. In people with alcoholism, the level of glutathione in the lungs is reduced due to oxidative stress.
Pratibha Joshi already in 2006 proved that in people who regularly drink excessive amounts of alcohol, there is an 80-90% decrease in the level of glutathione in the lungs. So remember that alcohol and glutathione are a bad combination.
However, if you happen to go crazy - check what are the natural ways to get rid of a hangover.
A good night's sleep is essential to functioning well. Long-term sleep deprivation can lead to oxidative stress and even hormonal imbalances. Moreover, numerous studies have shown that chronic sleep deprivation reduces glutathione levels.
Mustafa Gulec and his team measured glutathione levels in 30 healthy people and 30 people with insomnia. It turned out that in the latter it was much smaller than in the ones who slept well. Numerous animal studies have also shown that sleep deprivation leads to a decrease in glutathione levels. So if you follow the rules of sleep hygiene and take care of the right number of hours of sleep each night, you are ensuring the right level of glutathione.
Selenium is not only an essential mineral for humans, but is also a building material for glutathione. This means that without its presence, glutathione will not be formed. What to eat to raise its level?
The best sources of selenium are:
As you increase your intake of selenium-rich foods, you'll help your body replenish its glutathione stores.
Scientists determined them based on the amount needed to achieve maximum glutathione production. In 2014, Omid Sedighi looked at how selenium supplementation would affect 45 adults with chronic kidney disease. Each of them received 200 micrograms of selenium daily for 3 months. Interestingly, the level of glutathione increased significantly in all of them.
Polish scientists also came to a similar conclusion in 2001. In their study, they found that taking selenium supplements increased glutathione levels in people on dialysis.
Take into account that the studies above included selenium supplementation and not a diet rich in selenium. It is worth noting that the maximum tolerated level of selenium was set at 400 micrograms per day.
If you do not want to risk poisoning, discuss selenium supplementation and its dosage with your doctor. For most healthy adults, it is enough to eat a diet rich in selenium to ensure adequate levels of selenium and glutathione
How is glutathione formed? Sulfur is essential to maintain the structure and activity of proteins and enzymes in the body. Moreover, it is needed to make glutathione. So it is an important mineral that occurs naturally in some plants and protein sources.
Where exactly will you find sulfur? Look for it in two types of food: sources of the amino acids methionine and cysteine. You'll find most of it in beef, fish and poultry.
However, there are also plant sources of sulfur, such as cruciferous vegetables. These include broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, kale, watercress, and mustard. Garlic, shallots and onions will also prove to be your support. You can find many of them in the DASH diet, which was designed for people with hypertension - check what else you can eat in it.
Many human and animal studies have found that eating sulfur-rich vegetables reduces oxidative stress by increasing glutathione levels. And it's without pills!
Many articles advise against eating dairy products. This is because some people are allergic to it or are lactose intolerant (and we know how to deal with it effectively). However, dairy products contain beta-casein, which has the potential to increase glutathione levels in the body.
Where is glutathione found? A 2015 study found a link between higher dairy consumption and higher levels of glutathione in the brain of older adults. However, the increase in glutathione levels depends on the type of beta-casein consumed.
Dairy products can contain different types of beta casein: A1 or A2. Depending on the type of beta-casein in the dairy you consume, your glutathione levels may vary. According to one 2016 study, people who drank dairy products containing only type A2 beta-casein experienced a greater increase in glutathione levels than those who consumed milk containing both A1 and A2 beta-casein.
In Poland, unfortunately, cow's milk contains beta-casein A1 or A1 and A2 at the same time. A solution to increase glutathione levels without pills may be sheep's or goat's milk.
Vitamin C is one of the water-soluble vitamins. You will find it in many types of food, mainly fruits and vegetables. The best sources of vitamin C are strawberries, citrus fruits, papaya, kiwi, red peppers and… well, check it out and the results will surprise you!
This vitamin has many functions, including acting as an antioxidant that protects cells from oxidative stress. In addition, vitamin C ensures the right level of other antioxidants in the body, including glutathione. Scientists have found that vitamin C helps increase glutathione levels by attacking free radicals. Thanks to this, it is possible to save the reserves of glutathione. What's more, vitamin C is able to restore glutathione destroyed by oxidative stress.
And this is not the end of its pro-health properties - check how vitamin C can help take care of the health of the whole family.
Researchers have found that taking vitamin C supplements increases white blood cell glutathione levels in adults. In one study, adults took 0.5 to 1 gram of vitamin C each day for 13 weeks. This led to an 18% increase in glutathione in white blood cells.
Another study found that taking 0.5 grams of vitamin C per day increased white blood cell glutathione levels by as much as 47%. However, these studies included taking vitamin C supplements. Given that supplements are a concentrated version of the vitamin, it is unknown whether reaching for natural sources of vitamin C would have the same effect. More research is needed to see if you can increase your glutathione levels by eating foods rich in vitamin C.
Glutathione levels decline with age. What's more, recently scientists have found a link between low glutathione levels and certain age-related diseases such as glaucoma and macular degeneration. It is even more important to replenish its level on a regular basis so that each year is marked by health and well-being.