Have Trouble Getting Your Vitamin D Levels Up? Low Glutathione May Be to Blame!

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Have Trouble Getting Your Vitamin D Levels Up? Low Glutathione May Be to Blame!

Glutathione – Your Master Antioxidant

If you were to discover the fountain of youth, glutathione would probably be flowing freely from it.  That’s because damage to the cells by free radicals can accelerate aging but antioxidants, including glutathione, will bind to these free radicals and escort them out of the cells before they can do their damage.  The image below gives a great visual of what goes on inside your cells everyday.

Have Trouble Getting Your Vitamin D Levels Up?  Low Glutathione May Be to Blame! 1

Glutathione is a tripeptide made from three amino acids – glycine, cysteine and glutamine – and is found in high levels in your cells. In fact, it is found in the same concentration in the cells as glucose, cholesterol and potassium which portrays the message that glutathione is pretty important to the cells. It is heavily involved in the process of detoxification and is vitally important to the immune system.  Recent studies have shown that low glutathione contributes to more severe disease and hospitalization in the current public health crisis.

The Connection of Glutathione with Vitamin D

Many of our patients struggle with low Vitamin D despite supplementation.  Recent research is showing that this may be due to low glutathione status! Glutathione status positively influences the bioavailability of vitamin D. Adequate glutathione status in the liver upregulates vitamin D regulatory genes, which activates vitamin D. However, insufficient glutathione status impairs the vitamin D regulatory genes in the liver. The lead researchers of a recent study looking at this connection concluded “Thus, the vitamin D supplements widely consumed by the public are unlikely to be successful unless the GSH (glutathione) status is also corrected.”

So how do you know if you have adequate glutathione status?  Aging and stress deplete glutathione along with certain medications like acetaminophen. Chronic exposure to toxins and pesticides will also deplete glutathione since those must be cleared by the liver. In order to make glutathione in the body from the essential amino acids cysteine, glutamine and glycine, there must be adequate dietary proteins from animal sources.  Grass fed and pasture raised are best since those are less likely to contain unhealthy pesticides and toxins which will deplete glutathione. Sulfur rich veggies such as arugula, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale and radishes are also vital sources of glutathione. The Spectracell Micronutrient Test done at our office checks the status of glutathione and two of its precursors (glutamine and cysteine). 

You can also take supplements if your glutathione status is determined to be low.  Some of our favorites include NAC (N-Acetyl Cysteine) from Orthomolecular and Trizomal Glutathione from Apex. You can access our supplement store here. Always check with your health care provider before starting any new supplements. 

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