Thursday, September 22, 2011

L-Glutamine for Sugar Cravings

Everyone knows how important protein is to maintaining your overall health, but proteins don’t just appear out of nowhere. They are formed by linear chains of amino acids, which are literally the “building blocks” of all life forms.

Amino acids are words you often hear in the health and fitness industry… We all have heard the words before, but do we really know what they mean?!

Well, amino acids are essential for the body to survive… they are divided into two groups: essential & nonessential and each compound plays a huge role in your metabolism, nutrition & maintaining an overall healthy body.

It is said, out of the 20 amino acids, humans can produce 10 (nonessential- meaning the body already supplies it), the others can only be obtained by eating the right foods- (hence the term essential – meaning we need it, but the body doesn’t supply it) such as… meat, poultry, fish, legumes, nuts, etc..

Supplementing your diet with amino acids benefits your body as well and can help simplify the process!

The word L-glutamine (a nonessential amino acid) is thrown around a lot in the bodybuilding world!

During my contest prep, L- glutamine (powder form) was my #1 supplement... I took it 4x a day (Which equaled out to be 20grams…1 serving/scoop is 5grams)

Before my prep… I still used it, but only 1x a day, normally after my weight training sessions to help with muscle repair.

It wasn’t until I recently came across an article about ending sugar cravings- (which creep up time to time) that I learned L-glutamine has a lot more benefits, than just aiding in muscle recovery!

I thought the only reason I was taking it was to help my body recover from the extreme amounts of cardio and training I was putting it through!

It never occurred to me that while I was taking it for training... it was also helping my mood swings, keeping me focused and helping me control my cravings, which aided me to be more discipline!

So, I started to do a little more research on it…


“The single most abundant amino acid that the body creates. It is released from the muscle during times of stress (such as hard weight training workouts) and dieting. This amino acid has been shown to be a great anti-catabolic agent (protects the muscle from the catabolic activities of the hormone cortisol), a contributor to muscle cell volume, and an enhancer of the immune system by: regulating protein synthesis, accelerating glycogen synthesis after a workout, sparing the use of the glycogen stored in the muscle cell and speeding up recuperation from weight training workouts.”

Beyond the “Bodybuilding World” ….

While L- glutamine may be popular for muscle recovery...

~It is also essential for mental activity and cerebral function

~It also supports the treatment of arthritis, auto immune diseases, intestinal disorders, peptic ulcers and connective tissue diseases

~It can also be used to help developmental disabilities, epilepsy, fatigue, impotence, depression, stress and schizophrenia

~It also promotes the maintenance of a healthy digestive tract and may decrease sugar cravings & the desire for alcohol

*Cravings start when the blood sugar levels are low.. which happens after our sugar is spiked from eating to much simple/refined/processed foods such as: fast food, white rice, white pastas & breads, pizza, ice cream, candy, sugary drinks etc (this is why you may hear people say.. when I eat junk food, I crave more <~  I’ve been there) glutamine tells your body to stop producing insulin, so that blood sugar levels stop decreasing and start producing glycogen, which helps bring your blood sugar level back to normal*

For this reason, you always hear people saying... Eat small meals throughout the day and add a protein to every meal this helps stabilize blood sugar levels, which in return help control cravings, which in return can help you lose weight!!

I didn’t understand all of this at first, but I’m slowly starting to get it!

So, your next question should be… how much L-glutamine does one need?

Well, since I’m not a nutritionist or a trainer or anything such... I would say talk to one of those first or go online & do some research.

As for myself, I am currently taking 2 servings daily…. Once in the morning and again after weight training!

1 comment:

Glutamine said...

Good post, thanks for using this web space to discuss this Sugar subject.
Fortunately this topic is also presented in your blog, assuring a decent coverage.
Keep up the good work !