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The Glutamine Info Thread

Supplements discussion on The Glutamine Info Thread, within the Bodybuilding Forum; As with the Beta-alanine thread, i'd like to spark some discussion on Glutamine. There are far too many studies on ...


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Old 02-20-2007, 11:17 AM   #1
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Default The Glutamine Info Thread

As with the Beta-alanine thread, i'd like to spark some discussion on Glutamine. There are far too many studies on pubmed for me to sift through all of them, so I'm not going to bother. The following are my thoughts on Glutamine, please share yours, and hopefully we can gain a general concensus about this suppliments usefulness.


My personal opinion:

(1)Being that Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in skeletal muscle, it would make little sense to suppliment with it. Unless you have a serious defciancy, in which case you should see a doctor.

(2)Oral supplimentation with Glutamine is for the most part pointless. In order to see the effects from it orally, glutamine will need to pass through the gut, the small intestine, the portal vein, and through the liver. It is degraded at each step of this process, so the oral bioavailability is very low. "SuperDosing" (30+ grams per dose) orally would be the only way see any benifit from it, making it a very expensive suppliment.

(3)In order to maintain hightened levels of glutamine in the blood, you would need to dose roughly every 2hrs, presumably due to a very short half life. This would be a huge pain in the ass, not to mention a killer to the walet.

(4)Many products containing glutamine are touted as GH releasing. This includes the various peptides of glutamine that some retailers charge an arm and a leg for. Dont believe the hype, if your old enough to benifit from GH of any kind, go see a doctor and get script, there is no need to fool with this stuff.

(5)There are just too many variables. I've seen studies that say Glutamine had a positive effect on protien synthesis in aids patients, on the third sunday of every other month while they stand on thier heads, with an IV full of this stuff. DONT BELIEVE THE HYPE!!! Unless your an aids patient these studies mean nothing to you, and so goes it for any other half assed jackass trying to pass off a study done for one purpose to support something totally different. This happens all the time, dont fall for it.

(6)Glutamine has been shown to help with GI track complications, and immune function at lower dosages.

(7) Layne Norton (web page here) as well as many other outstanding and reputable industry professionals have agreed that oral glutamine supplimentation is all but useless (with the exception of point 6).

Conclusion:

IMO, there is no reason anyone should invest thier hard earned cash in Glutamine, L-glutamine, or any of the bullshit peptides. Save your money for something that will actually show you some returns. Unless of course your bothered by upset stomachs, or are constantly sick due a shitty immune system.

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Old 02-20-2007, 02:07 PM   #2
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I posted stuff from Layne Norton before. Here it is again.

From Layne Norton:
"I've written about this so many times on soo many boards. I'll posts snippets from conversations I've hard

here is where I explain what happens to orally ingested glutamine
unfortunately, not much glutamine makes it into the bloodstream from oral supplementation. When glutamine enters the small intestine and is absorbed into the mucosal cell, it is then metabolized via brush boarder enzymes to two different products. One product is alanine which is created from the alpha nitrogen on glutamine, the other product is the carbon skelaton left over with the epsilon nitrogen. This carbon skelaton is then oxidized by the gut for fuel while the ammonia group is excreted, or may enter the urea cycle. The alanine from this process is sent to the liver via the portal vein where it is used to form glucose via gluconeogenesis. It is in this way that our body prevents us from overloading ourselves with individual amino acids. The liver and mucosal cells act as a buffer to the peripheral tissues. If this buffer wasn't in place it could have dire health consequences. So to recap, you can't overload yourself with certain amino acids, b/c before ANY nutrient that is orally administered enters the blood stream, it has to pass by the liver, and since the liver regulates amino acid levels, if it "sees" that things may get out of wack it will retain these substrates for gluconeogenesis (making glucose from amino acids) which it will then pass on to the peripheral tissues.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
this was addressing people who said you need a high dose to get anything from it.

"just real quickly... all of you that are saying... "well they need to use more glutamine"... well that's all well and good... OF COURSE IT WILLHAVE AN ANABOLIC EFFECT WHEN YOU GIVE IT IN A 40G DOSE! It does have nitrogen and though glutamine doesn't stimulate protein synthesis it can donate it's nitrogens and they can be recycled and eventually end up in other amnio acids... as well as glutamine may spare the oxidation of other amino acids... HOWEVER, this is nothing that you wouldn't also get from a corresponding increase in protein intake by 40g.

Many people will say, "well I didn't see results until I upped my glutamine to 30-40g per day" well what most likely happened was one of 2 things
1) they increased their total nitrogen intake to a more beneficial level and saw benefits from it

2) they increased their total calories by 120-160 calories... and gained some weight

We need to look at this and think critically... a corresponding amount of increase in protein intake with an equal amount of nitrogen will do the same thing. "

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

You will not find one well designed study showing that glutamine has an impact on muscle gain/retention in healthy, weight trained individuals. All the studies out there that show benefits to glutamine have the following problems with them.

1) they use glutamine adminstered intraveneously, this bypasses the gut and liver extraction.

2) the studies are done in burned, diseased, or surgical patients. Contrary to what supplement companies would like you to believe, this does NOT relate the physiological state of a trained athlete.

3) the studies are done using glutamine vs. placebo. Of course glutamine will be superior to no calories whatsoever in maintaining muscle mass... that's kind of "duh." Of these studies out there supporting glutamine use in athletes (of which there are few), none of them that I know of have examined glutamine supplementation in people consuming the same amounts of total nitrogen. It's just placebo vs. glutamine, which is terrible experimental design.

Additionally, many people often cite the fact that there is a release of glutamine from muscle cells during workout... so since there is a release, you must be losing glutamine from the muscle and this must be catabolic. Not the case. Intracellular levels of muscular glutamine remain unchanged during exercise... how you ask? The glutamine released is formed in the muscle from the metabolism of BCAAs. BCAAs are transamminated to their keto acids and the ammonia from this reaction is transferred to alpha ketoglutarate to form glutamine. This glutamine is then released from the muscle, not stored glutamine. This glutamine travels to the liver/small intestine which is the main fuel for the small intestine. In return the small intestine releases BCAAs which travel to the muscle. So the small intestine gets what it needs and the skeletal muscle gets what it needs. So if anything, supplements with BCAAs... not glutamine.

Why have you never heard any of this before??? Because glutamine is a cash cow of the industry, you will never see people questioning it's effectiveness in any of the mainstream muscle mags or by any of the pro bodybuilders. Why? Because the supplement companies pay for the advertisements that keep these magazines in business... do you think they would put a glutamine ad in a magazine with a big anti-glutamine article???? Heck no. It wouldn't be good for the magazine either in the long run. So for the most part it is kept hush-hush.

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If you act sanctimonious I will just list out your logical fallacies until you get pissed off and spew blasphemous remarks.
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Old 02-20-2007, 02:11 PM   #3
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Good Stuff Eric, Layne was the one who opened my eyes to this. It bothers me that some people still believe in Glutamine as a muscle building suppliment. Hopefully we can help spread the good word.
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Old 02-20-2007, 02:23 PM   #4
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Here is some studies that Slayer of Souls posted on another board:

http://forums.1fast400.com/?showtopic=24855&hl
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Old 02-20-2007, 02:47 PM   #5
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Do you think that glutamine would be a good thing to take when you sick or when you know it around you (kids and school) ? If it helps your immune system then wouldn't it be good?

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Old 02-20-2007, 02:51 PM   #6
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Well I've been doing some more reserch into that subject. I'll get back to you.

Here's something to kick it off:

J Appl Physiol. 2002 Sep;93(3):813-22. Related Articles, Links

Exercise-induced immunodepression- plasma glutamine is not the link.

Hiscock N, Pedersen BK.

Copenhagen Muscle Research Centre and Department of Infectious Diseases, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, DK-2100 Copenhagen, Denmark.

The amino acid glutamine is known to be important for the function of some immune cells in vitro. It has been proposed that the decrease in plasma glutamine concentration in relation to catabolic conditions, including prolonged, exhaustive exercise, results in a lack of glutamine for these cells and may be responsible for the transient immunodepression commonly observed after acute, exhaustive exercise. It has been unclear, however, whether the magnitude of the observed decrease in plasma glutamine concentration would be great enough to compromise the function of immune cells. In fact, intracellular glutamine concentration may not be compromised when plasma levels are decreased postexercise. In addition, a number of recent intervention studies with glutamine feeding demonstrate that, although the plasma concentration of glutamine is kept constant during and after acute, strenuous exercise, glutamine supplementation does not abolish the postexercise decrease in in vitro cellular immunity, including low lymphocyte number, impaired lymphocyte proliferation, impaired natural killer and lymphokine-activated killer cell activity, as well as low production rate and concentration of salivary IgA. It is concluded that, although the glutamine hypothesis may explain immunodepression related to other stressful conditions such as trauma and burn, plasma glutamine concentration is not likely to play a mechanistic role in exercise-induced immunodepression.

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Old 02-20-2007, 06:25 PM   #7
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More:

Proc Nutr Soc. 1999 Aug;58(3):733-42
Exercise and immune function: effect of ageing and nutrition.

Pedersen BK, Bruunsgaard H, Jensen M, Krzywkowski K, Ostrowski K.

Copenhagen Muscle Research Centre, Denmark. bkp@rh.dk

Strenuous exercise is followed by lymphopenia, neutrophilia, impaired natural immunity, decreased lymphocyte proliferative responses to mitogens, a low level of secretory immunoglobulin A in saliva, but high circulating levels of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines. These exercise-induced immune changes may provide the physiological basis of altered resistance to infections. The mechanisms underlying exercise-induced immune changes are multifactorial and include neuroendocrinological and metabolic mechanisms. Nutritional supplementation with glutamine abolishes the exercise-induced decline in plasma glutamine, but does not influence post-exercise immune impairment. However, carbohydrate loading diminishes most exercise effects of cytokines, lymphocyte and neutrophils. The diminished neutrophilia and elastase (EC 3.4.21.37) responses to eccentric exercise in elderly subjects were enhanced to levels comparable with those of young subjects by fish oil or vitamin E supplements. However, although vitamin C supplementation may diminish the risk of contracting an infection after strenuous exercise, it is not obvious that this effect is linked to an effect of vitamin C on exercise-induced immune changes. In conclusion, it is premature to make recommendations regarding nutritional supplementation to avoid post-exercise impairment of the immune system.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

: J Sports Sci. 2004 Jan;22(1):115-25.
Exercise, nutrition and immune function.

Gleeson M, Nieman DC, Pedersen BK.

School of Sport and Exercise Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK. m.gleeson@lboro.ac.uk

Strenuous bouts of prolonged exercise and heavy training are associated with depressed immune cell function. Furthermore, inadequate or inappropriate nutrition can compound the negative influence of heavy exertion on immunocompetence. Dietary deficiencies of protein and specific micronutrients have long been associated with immune dysfunction. An adequate intake of iron, zinc and vitamins A, E, B6 and B12 is particularly important for the maintenance of immune function, but excess intakes of some micronutrients can also impair immune function and have other adverse effects on health. Immune system depression has also been associated with an excess intake of fat. To maintain immune function, athletes should eat a well-balanced diet sufficient to meet their energy requirements. An athlete exercising in a carbohydrate-depleted state experiences larger increases in circulating stress hormones and a greater perturbation of several immune function indices. Conversely, consuming 30-60 g carbohydrate x h(-1) during sustained intensive exercise attenuates rises in stress hormones such as cortisol and appears to limit the degree of exercise-induced immune depression. Convincing evidence that so-called 'immune-boosting' supplements, including high doses of antioxidant vitamins, glutamine, zinc, probiotics and Echinacea, prevent exercise-induced immune impairment is currently lacking.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Effect of glutamine supplementation on exercise-induced changes in lymphocyte function.

Krzywkowski K, Petersen EW, Ostrowski K, Kristensen JH, Boza J, Pedersen BK.

Copenhagen Muscle Research Centre and Department of Infectious Diseases, Rigshospitalet, 2200 Copenhagen N, Denmark.

The purpose of this study was to investigate the possible role of glutamine in exercise-induced impairment of lymphocyte function. Ten male athletes participated in a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind crossover study. Each athlete performed bicycle exercise for 2 h at 75% of maximum O(2) consumption on 2 separate days. Glutamine or placebo supplements were given orally during and up to 2 h postexercise. The trial induced postexercise neutrocytosis that lasted at least 2 h. The total lymphocyte count increased by the end of exercise due to increase of both CD3(+)TCR alpha beta(+) and CD3(+)TCR gamma delta(+) T cells as well as CD3(-)CD16(+)CD56(+) natural killer (NK) cells. Concentrations of CD8(+) and CD4(+) T cells lacking CD28 and CD95 on their surface increased more than those of cells expressing these receptors. Within the CD4(+) cells, only CD45RA(-) memory cells, but not CD45RA(+) naive cells, increased in response to exercise. Most lymphocyte subpopulations decreased 2 h after exercise. Glutamine supplementation abolished the postexercise decline in plasma glutamine concentration but had no effect on lymphocyte trafficking, NK and lymphokine-activated killer cell activities, T cell proliferation, catecholamines, growth hormone, insulin, or glucose. Neutrocytosis was less pronounced in the glutamine-supplemented group, but it is unlikely that this finding is of any clinical significance. This study does not support the idea that glutamine plays a mechanistic role in exercise-induced immune changes.

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Old 02-20-2007, 07:16 PM   #8
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shit man, sometimes I feel like i'm back in school again after you post....Good read...
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Old 02-20-2007, 07:51 PM   #9
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Dam eric, goin crazy with the evidence. Good shit, if you had all this shit why didnt you start this thread hahah
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Old 02-21-2007, 09:35 AM   #10
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Picking my battles . But I reckon I joined your army when I posted and I'm a good soldier.

Keep in mind, guys, that in terms of immunodepression, these studies are either not talking about heavy weight work or they are disucssions that don't really define what they mean in the absracts (on a few I couldn't get the full text). They're talking more about endurance work. I suspect that the mechanism is much the same but really people can only make their own conclusions on this but I think there is enough evidence to say that glutamine is not supported as the key to controlling immunodepression post exercise.

Most of the earlier studies that gave people the idea that glutamine worked were more studies just proposing that glutamine was a factor in the immune changes they saw.

BTW, I glanced over Scivation's response to what Slayer posted on the other board. Thank God I don't have to deal with that, lol. It talked about glutamine and the immune response. So they propose, as others have, that glutamine has no effect on the post-exercise immunodepression because it is being "borrowed" from other places like your muscles. But what they don't seem to want to realize is that the immuno depression is there regardless after exercise. They're saying that if you don't take glutamine, it will be borrowed from your muscles and you'll go catabolic.

So the question is if glutamine is that important. Well it's circular logic isn't it? If glutamine supplementation was so important then the studies would back it up more often. You can't say, well, glutamine won't build more muscle but it will keep you from going catabolic. Shit, it seems to me that something that keeps you from going catabolic...and I mean something that without which you WILL go catabolic...in the long run that thing should lead to more gains, right?

Last edited by EricT; 02-21-2007 at 10:39 AM..
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