Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Glutamine and Weight Training: Worth Your Money?


Just a quick new study today and more info soon on the Z Health/ Dragon Door event that I was helping with this past Sat and Sun. A quick hello to all that I met there and please drop me an email and keep in touch.

Staley Seminar info soon, I just need to carve out time to get the notes typed up.

Here is a new abstract showing that glutamine once again is not worth your money. While the chance that it MAY help gut health is more of an open question, I would personally not spend money on it.

Get the rest of your nutrition, movement and training in order first. I use Precision Nutrition, Z Health, and Kettlebells along with some basic lifts wtih my clients/athletes.

Once you have everything else dialed in and you can hit 90% compliance for 4 weeks, then try to add ONE thing and monitor the results. I would put BCAAs and creatine at the top of the list for extra supplements to try well before glutamine (protein powder and fish oil/EFAs I count more as a food than a supplement).

Here is the abstract and judge for yourself.

Dosing and efficacy of glutamine supplementation in human exercise and sport training.
Gleeson M.

J Nutr. 2008 Oct;138(10):2045S-2049S
School of Sport and Exercise Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU England.

Some athletes can have high intakes of l-glutamine because of their high energy and protein intakes and also because they consume protein supplements, protein hydrolysates, and free amino acids. Prolonged exercise and periods of heavy training are associated with a decrease in the plasma glutamine concentration and this has been suggested to be a potential cause of the exercise-induced immune impairment and increased susceptibility to infection in athletes. However, several recent glutamine feeding intervention studies indicate that although the plasma glutamine concentration can be kept constant during and after prolonged strenuous exercise, the glutamine supplementation does not prevent the postexercise changes in several aspects of immune function. Although glutamine is essential for lymphocyte proliferation, the plasma glutamine concentration does not fall sufficiently low after exercise to compromise the rate of proliferation. Acute intakes of glutamine of approximately 20-30 g seem to be without ill effect in healthy adult humans and no harm was reported in 1 study in which athletes consumed 28 g glutamine every day for 14 d. Doses of up to 0.65 g/kg body mass of glutamine (in solution or as a suspension) have been reported to be tolerated by patients and did not result in abnormal plasma ammonia levels.

However, the suggested reasons for taking glutamine supplements (support for immune system, increased glycogen synthesis, anticatabolic effect) have received little support from well-controlled scientific studies in healthy, well-nourished humans.