Glutathione and Your Body
Glutathione is a natural antioxidant produced within our bodies that helps us fight free radical damage. Free radicals are produced by oxygen consumption in our cells are also spawned by toxins such as pollution, herbicides, smoking and radiation. Unfortunately as we age, our natural levels of antioxidants, such as glutathione, decrease putting our bodies at risk for free radical damage and oxidative stress (imbalance caused by free radical production vs. the body's inability to detoxify them).
Max International has a collection of products that work with our bodies to enhance glutathione production. These products can help our bodies fight against damage to our heart, ears, eyes, lungs, kidneys, liver, brain and other major organs.
Glutathione can help our bodies fight free radical damage:
The Heart: One of the leading causes of death in the United States is heart disease. Arteriosclerosis, hardening of the arteries, is often a contributing factor to heart disease. Lipid peroxidation (the oxidation of fats by free radicals) has been identified as a cause of arteriosclerosis. Glutathione is a critical component of the enzyme glutathione peroxidase. This enzyme helps detoxify the lipid peroxides produced during lipid oxidation.
The Ears: Free radical damage can cause oxidative injury leading to age-related hearing loss. The cochlea (inner ear) contains glutathione to help fight damage and reduce both noise- and age-related hearing loss.
The Eyes: Glutathione is found in the lens of our eyes to protect against UV radiation. Oxidation of the lens proteins leads to opacity of the lens and changes in sight. Antioxidants are crucial in the fight again oxidative stress in our eyes' lenses.
The Lungs: Our lungs work hard to detoxify the environmental chemicals we inhale every day. Glutathione is found in high concentrations in our lungs to assist in this detoxification process.
The Kidneys: Antioxidants are essential to helping the kidneys filter waste products in order to protect our bodies from toxins.
The Liver: Glutathione is a key element used by the liver as it cleans toxins from the body before they are able to enter our bloodstream. Over time, exposure to large amounts of toxins can significantly reduce levels of glutathione and other antioxidants such as superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT) that can result in liver damage and oxidative stress.
Glutathione can help your brain
Despite accounting for only 2% of the body's mass, the brain consumes 20% of the total oxygen used by our bodies. Due to this high level of oxygen use and a naturally lower concentration of antioxidant activity, the brain is highly vulnerable to oxidation, oxidative stress and lipid peroxidation. Free radicals are generated by oxygen consumption in our cells. Detoxification of these free radicals is essential to the health of our brain and to help prevent neurodegenerative diseases that have been associated with damage caused by free radicals.
Glutathione is the primary antioxidant protecting our brains from this damage. In order to better understand how glutathione can help our brains, we need to understand how our brains and its key components, such as lipids, work.
Lipids are a group of molecules which include fats and vitamins such as A, D, E and K. Lipids are vital to cell function - in particular energy storage and cell signalling. Cell signalling is the way cells communicate which allows for important functions such as support of the immune system and tissue repair to occur. When cells are not properly communicating due to any type of damage, it can result in various health challenges. Cell damage occurs as a result of lipid peroxidation when free radicals affect electrons in cell membrane lipids. Damage to the cell membranes prevents clear communication between cells, therefore disrupting normal cell function.
Research suggests that lipid peroxidation due to free radicals is a major contributor to the functional decline characteristics common in an aging brain.
An August 2009 study conducted on rats tested the aging effects of aluminium toxicity. One group was given a measured level of toxicity. The other group was given the same toxicity mixed with a substance that acted as a free radical scavenger with antioxidant properties. The two groups had dramatically different results. The first group, given only the aluminium-toxic substance, experienced:
A significant increase to lipid peroxidation, leading to oxidative stress and free radical damage;
A decrease of SOD, glutathione and other antioxidants. The second group, which was given a free radical scavenger, experienced opposite findings:
Lowered lipid peroxidation;
Enhanced antioxidant activity.
The study found that the free radical scavenger reduced oxidative stress, therefore helping slow down the aging process caused by toxins.
The importance of a healthy brain and body is evident.
Free radicals and environmental stressors are not only bad for us, but can also speed the aging process. It is important to understand that during times of environmental stress, free radicals can drastically increase and potentially result in significant cell damage. The importance of supporting antioxidant production cannot be overemphasized. Glutathione and other antioxidants such as SOD and CAT work together toward this end. Max International supplements such as Cellgevity, MaxONE and MaxGXL help the body by providing each cell the fuel it needs to increase antioxidant activity.