I write a whole chapter on supplements in my book Secrets to a Healthy Metabolism. #8 is l-glutamine. Here is a short segment on l-glutamine:
Glutamine is a particularly important supplement for anyone wanting to lose weight. Glutamine is mainly stored within muscles and is the body’s most abundant amino acid. Amino acids are the basic building blocks of a protein. It's my favorite supplement and one I take pretty much all the time. It is an amazing supplement that helps a variety of people; the dieter, the workout warrior, the chronically ill, people with stomach and intestinal issues, cancer patients, and those recovering from surgery should be taking regularly. While most of the glutamine we need is produced in our muscles, we can also acquire a small amount of glutamine from dietary sources, such as cabbage!
Glutamine is also very therapeutic for our digestive system. Intestinal health is important because it is the transport of fuel and nutrients. Glutamine is the fuel and nourishes the cells that line the digestive track and intestines. Time and time again studies have shown that a therapeutic dose of supplemental glutamine protects against aspirin-induced gastric lesions and helps heal painful ulcers. In fact, an old folk remedy for ulcers is cabbage juice, which is very high in glutamine. Stomach problems, such as colitis and Crohn’s disease can be calmed by glutamine. Glutamine can be used whenever there are any stomach problems, as simple as drinking too much alcohol (alcoholic-induced gastritis) to ulcers, diarrhea, or even more serious problems such as inflammatory bowel disease.
Glutamine is also beneficial for a variety of other health issues.
1. Studies also find that glutamine will reduce cravings for high-glycemic carbohydrates and can make your weight-loss plan a lot easier.
2. Glutamine can help prevent both depression and fatigue and can also help us create neurotransmitters in the brain, which help relax us while elevating our mood. In the brain, it is transformed to glutamic acid and boosts the amount of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid). Both glutamic acid and GABA are considered “brain fuel,” because they are necessary for everyday mental function.
3. Many studies have also found that therapeutic amounts of glutamine helps prevent the harmful effects of alcohol on the brain and may also decrease alcohol (as well as sugar) cravings.
4. It is also essential to our immune system, because it is utilized by white blood cells. Glutamine is now used in some hospitals intravenously to speed up recovery of patients. The better you develop your muscles through exercise, the more glutamine they produce which is one of the reasons fit people get sick less often.
Here is a super recipe for our stomach, brain and muscles!
1 head green cabbage
3 cups fresh basil leaves
1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup macadamia nut oil
Celtic sea salt and pepper to taste
Slice cabbage into egg noodle widths. Stir fry in butter (or you could boil it in water) for 5-10 minutes or until very tender.
PESTO: In a food processor, blend together basil leaves, nuts, garlic, and cheese. Pour in oil slowly while still mixing. Stir in salt and pepper. Makes 16 servings.
NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON (per cup)
White Pasta = 43 carbs, 5 fiber, 246 calories
Cabbage = 5 carbs, 2 fiber, 22 calories
Traditional Pesto Pasta = 445 calories, 45 carbs, 5.9g fiber
"Healthified" Pesto Pasta = 221 calories, 7 carbs, 3g fiber
TIP: To avoid gas after eating cabbage, add a few fennel, caraway or cumin seeds before cooking.