If you’ve seen a gym rat with 15 different supplement bottles in their cupboard, there is a high chance one of those are glutamine.
Glutamine is used by many gym-goers to increase muscle growth. Is the hype real? Is glutamine worth it? This article will cover all the details of glutamine on muscle growth and if you should be utilizing it in your supplement stack.
Is Glutamine Worth It?
If you are eating a high protein diet, you most likely don’t need glutamine. It can help fight fatigue and improve muscle recovery.
What is Glutamine
Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid found in our bodies. It is made in the muscles and is the building block for protein creation in the body. This is why many people looking to build muscle supplement it. It also creates other amino acids such as glucose.
Glutamine also assists with immune function, gut health, and help fight stress. Glutamine is found in wheat, peanuts, corn, and milk and deficiency is rare and usually caused by a genetic disorder.
When the body is stressed or ill, supplement glutamine can help it recovers faster. Glutamine helps ease the effects of cancer treatments such as oral inflammation, vomiting, and muscle wasting. Since glutamine is the body’s main fuel source for the body’s lymphocytes or white blood cells.
Glutamine helps maintain intestinal lining in the body helping the body absorb nutrients.
There are two different forms of glutamine; L-glutamine and D-glutamine. L-glutamine is used to make proteins and perform functions in the body. D-glutamine has proven to be unimportant in the body.
Glutamine is effective for treating skin disease conditions such as sepsis, burns, and injuries. Glutamine alleviates the hyper metabolic response and reduces organ damage after burns.
Glutamine Effects on Muscle Growth
Glutamine is necessary for maintaining muscle protein. It may also help fight fatigue and improve exercise recovery. This allows you to workout for longer in the gym and boosts muscle recovery and growth.
It does so by drawing water and salt into the cells, keeping them hydrated.
It’s important to note that glutamine is abundant in high-protein foods. People trying to gain muscle are already eating high amounts of protein and getting a high intake of glutamine. Glutamine is also found in many protein powders. If you are already taking protein powder, you probably don’t also need to supplement glutamine.
Glutamine has been shown to fight fatigue and help with muscle recovery, but it’s not effective at increasing muscle growth.
Glutamine Dosage & Price
Glutamine should be taken post workout for optimum nutrient absorption. It’s muscle repairing effects will start to work quickly after you have broken down your muscles during your workout. This will enhance the process of protein synthesis, allowing your muscles to start rebuilding.
Most glutamine supplements contain about 5g per serving to be taken once per day.
Is Glutamine Safe?
Glutamine is generally safe for most people. Some people may experience side effects of bloating, nausea, heartburn, and stomach pain. If you experience any of these, stop taking it. Glutamine should not be used by those with liver disease or bipolar disorder as it can increase the symptoms of both.
When glutamine is taken, a very small amount of it will make it to the muscles. Since it’s an abundant amino acid used for plenty of other functions in the body, its main goal isn’t muscle building. Most excess glutamine will go to the intestines, making it not a great choice for muscle building.
Which Supplements are Best for Muscle Growth?
- Protein powder
Creatine is an amino acid mainly found in the muscles. It is found in red meat and seafood, but in very low amounts. Creatine has proven to increase strength gains, muscle mass, and performance while training. Creatine increases the amount of phosphocreatine stores in the muscles.
Phosphocreatine helps the formation of ATP which is the key molecule that cells use for energy. ATP is broken down in the gym to produce energy. Increasing phosphoreatine storage allows more ATP fuels to be produced which fuels the muscle during a workout.
Creatine has also shown to boost the formation of proteins and create new muscle fibers. By increasing the water content in the muscles and improving biological pathways, gym performance and muscle growth increases.
Pre-workout supplements are meant to get you through those difficult workouts. They increase energy and focus, allowing you to workout harder and longer, increasing muscle breakdown. Caffeine is the main ingredient as it has proven to increase energy and reduce fatigue, while also promoting weight loss.
Ingredients such as L-arginine and L-carnitine are used to boost nitric oxide production in the body. Nitric oxide relaxes the blood vessels and improves blood flow. Oxygen and nutrients can travel to the muscles quicker. Pumps while training are also better.
Protein powder is great for those who can’t get in enough protein from whole foods. If you are trying to gain muscle then you should be eating a gram of protein per pound of body weight. It can be difficult to eat enough protein-rich foods, so protein powder is a good alternative.
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