Chris Masterjohn, PhD shared about about consuming glutathione.

Consuming Glutathione in Foods and Supplements

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Chris Masterjohn, PhD shared about about consuming glutathione.

Glutathione is amazing. Ever the underdog, few people have heard of this molecule, yet it supports nearly every aspect of our health. Consider these incredible properties:

  • By acting as an antioxidant, it prevents wear and tear on your tissues, helping you stay youthful, age gracefully, and remain free of chronic diseases.
  • By supporting every-day detoxification, it does far more to keep you toxin-free than any juice fast, herbal cleanse, or detox bath could ever do.
  • By helping cells grow, multiply, and repair themselves, it supports growth in children, helps you heal after injury, and helps you get fit in response to exercise.
  • In the lungs, it keeps mucus fluid, preventing congestion, and it opens up the airways, preventing asthma.

Although deep inside our cells we make our own glutathione every day, we also consume it in foods and it is available in supplements. This resource is a guide to consuming glutathione-rich foods and buying the right glutathione supplements. It ends with a searchable database of glutathione in 285 foods.

Can We Really Absorb Glutathione?

Some people may point out that glutathione can be broken down or oxidized in the digestive tract before absorption, making it useless to eat it in foods or use it as a supplement.

Although glutathione can indeed be broken down and oxidized before absorption, it can also be absorbed intact. Scientists have shown that oral glutathione is absorbed intact in laboratory animals, and that glutathione crosses human intestinal cells intact. They have identified some of the transporters involved, and have shown that oral glutathione increases glutathione status in both animals and humans.

Do Glutathione Supplements Need to Be Sublingual or Liposomal?

Unfortunately, we know very little about how the simpler, less expensive “regular” glutathione supplements compare to the fancier, more expensive sublingual and liposomal supplements. One study hinted at the possibility that sublingual glutathione improves glutathione status better than regular glutathione over the course of three weeks, but is it worth the extra cost?

Let's take the most generous interpretation of this study found in the marketing materials of Terry Naturally Clinical Glutathione, which claim 230% greater efficacy. This supplement costs $2.93 per gram of glutathione. By contrast, Jarrow Formulas Reduced Glutathione costs 60 cents per gram. Even if the sublingual form really were 230% better than the regular form, it's 488% more expensive. So, simple math shows that it's not worth it.

If we take a critical look at the study, sublingual glutathione looks even less impressive. See the technical notes below for a more detailed analysis.

Liposomal glutathione has the advantage of being packaged into liposomes. Liposomes are small droplets enclosed by membranes that are very similar to our own cellular membranes. These membranes shield their contents from digestion and allow them to be taken up by cells as entire droplets.

The case for liposomal glutathione rests on experiments using isolated cells. For example, liposomal glutathione is 100 times more effective at delivering glutathione to astrocytes, a particular type of brain cell. But these are isolated cells in a laboratory. When you consume liposomal glutathione as a supplement, do the liposomes all head straight to your astrocytes to be absorbed in tact? Beats me. There are, unfortunately, no human trials clearly documenting the superiority of liposomal glutathione to regular glutathione, and there is no way to perform a cost-benefit analysis.

Still, some people may benefit from liposomal glutathione for the following reason.

Glutathione appears to be taken up intact by the kidney, heart, lung, brain, small intestine, and skin. Nevertheless, it is possible that certain cell types lack the ability to take up glutathione intact, or that many cell types are not able to take up as much as they would need when exposed to stressful conditions. In healthy people, these cells will simply make their own glutathione. People with diabetes, insulin resistance, infection, or chronic inflammation, however, are not able to make as much glutathione as they should. Although poorly studied, liposomal glutathione may be preferable to regular glutathione for you if you suffer from any of these conditions. Additionally, carbohydrate restriction lowers glutathione synthesis, so liposomal glutathione may be helpful for you if you have poor glutathione status while consuming a low-carbohydrate diet.

Why Not Just Use N-Acetyl-Cysteine?

Glutathione is made from three amino acids: glutamate, cysteine, and glycine. In an average healthy person, the limiting amino acid for its production is cysteine. Cysteine itself degrades very easily, and N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC) provides cysteine in a way that prevents this degradation. While NAC is likely to be effective at supporting glutathione status in many people, glycine may be limiting in other people, and NAC doesn't provide any glycine. Further, people with any of the conditions that impair glutathione synthesis, listed in the paragraph above, will have a more difficult time using NAC to make their own glutathione. Glutathione supplements get around both problems.

What Is the Best Glutathione Supplement?

On the basis of cost and quality, I recommend Jarrow Glutathione. Here are four ways to buy it:

  • The small bottle on Amazon. 60 500 mg capsules for $18.61. 62 cents per gram, eligible for Prime, ships from and sold by Amazon. Save an additional 5% by subscribing or an additional 15% by subscribing to five items.
  • The big bottle on Amazon. 120 500 mg capsules for $36.00. 60 cents per gram, eligible for Prime, ships from and sold by Amazon. Save an additional 5% by subscribing or an additional 15% by subscribing to five items.
  • The small bottle on iHerb. 60 500 mg capsules for $22.24. 74 cents per gram.
  • The big bottle on iHerb. 120 500 mg capsules for $40.73. 68 cents per gram.

The best deal is the big bottle on Amazon.

People with metabolic disorders, chronic infection or inflammation, or who chronically restrict carbohydrate may find they respond better to liposomal glutathione. Core Med Science Optimized Liposomal Glutathione sells on Amazon for $41.99, providing 30 500 mg doses as a liquid, which is $2.79 per gram. The same brand sells a bottle of capsules providing the same number of doses for $46.99 and $3.13 per gram. iHerb sells Lypricel Liposomal Glutathione, which provides 30 450 mg packets for $59.95, which is $4.44 per gram, much more expensive than the Core Med Science product.

It is important to note that lipsomal glutathione tastes terrible and the liquid is a gooey syrup that does not mix well with anything. Core Med Science claims their capsules are tasteless. I cannot vouch for that, but I suspect most people would much rather take capsules than mix a nasty goo into their favorite smoothie, so I recommend the capsules for anyone who feels compelled to try liposomal glutathione.

Nevertheless, Jarrow glutathione is 4.5 times less expensive, so I recommend trying that first.

What Is the Best Dose of Glutathione?

Over the course of six months, both 250 mg and 1000 mg of oral glutathione have been shown to increase glutathione status in humans. The higher dose may be more effective than the lower dose, but we do not have sufficient data to make a rigorous comparison. See the technical notes below for a more detailed analysis.

As a prophylactic I believe a dose of 500 mg/d is likely to improve glutathione status when taken regularly over the course of several months.

How Do I know If I Should Take Glutathione?

Personally, I keep a bottle of Jarrow glutathione in my cabinet at all times, but I don't take it every day. If I get sick or am around sick people, I will take up to a gram per meal to support my immune system. If I develop any isolated respiratory symptoms such as wheezing, they tend to disappear rapidly if I take a gram of glutathione.

Although there are no clinical trials supporting these uses, 1 gram per day of glutathione for six months has produced no known adverse effects. Therefore, if 60 cents worth of glutathione might wipe out wheezing, why not try it? I believe this is a harmless form of first aid for non-emergency conditions.

There are two ways to determine whether you should use glutathione on a daily basis. First, if you know you have poor glutathione status. To determine your glutathione status, use the recommendations in Why You Should Manage Your Glutathione Status and How to Do It. Second, if you get sick often, feel you are aging too rapidly, or have a chronic disease.

While it is better to test than guess, testing can be expensive and glutathione supplementation appears harmless, so I think it is acceptable to self-experiment with supplements on the basis of symptoms alone, providing you do not use it as a substitute for professional medical treatment.

If any of these apply, I recommend trying one or two capsules of Jarrow glutathione per day. If these do not seem to give the desired result, try 500 mg of liposomal glutathione per day. If you find one to be better than other, please let me know in the comments!

For every-day general health, I recommend obtaining glutathione from foods rather than supplements.

Getting Glutathione From Foods

The food richest in glutathione are meats and vegetables. Fruits tend to occupy the middle tier, and most other foods are low in the glutathione. Processing such as canning and juicing degrades a large portion of the glutathione within a food.

Nevertheless, there is a lot of variation within categories, and I recommend searching our database for the foods you like to eat for a better view of what you are likely eating.

The database includes the following terms:

  • Reduced glutathione. This is the fully functional form of glutathione you would get from a supplement.
  • Total glutathione. This includes reduced glutathione and oxidized glutathione. Our cells regularly recycle oxidized glutathione back to its reduced form, so we can probably utilize the oxidized glutathione in foods.
  • Glutathione-reactive substances. These are substances that can irreversibly degrade glutathione. They may diminish the availability of glutathione from foods, and eating foods that are rich in glutathione-reactive substances and poor in glutathione could even rob us of the glutathione we have made ourselves.
  • Net glutathione. This is the total glutathione minus the glutathione-reactive substances.

Since we have not extensively studied the effect of consuming food glutathione on human health, it isn't 100% clear which term is best to use. The database sorts by reduced glutathione by default for two reasons: 1) this is the form found in supplements, so it is useful to compare what you would get from food versus supplements, 2) it has been measured in many more foods than net glutathione or glutathione-reactive substances has. Nevertheless, you can pick which term you want to sort by, and when you click on “view more details” for any given food, it will give you the complete information.

As an example of foods rich in reduced glutathione, consider the following:

Meat: one serving each of pork loin, chicken liver, and steak. 46.2 mg
Veggies: one serving each of asparagus, broccoli, and potatoes 46.3 mg
Fruit: one serving each of avocado, zucchini squash, and tomatoes 36.5 mg

You could eat all of these in a day, obtaining 130 mg of glutathione, and have room left over for plenty of other foods.

It is important to note that a food can be rich in glutathione and still bad for you. French fries, for example, are relatively rich in glutathione, but the high heat and fryer oil makes them a terrible food. A good diet is about more than glutathione. Still, glutathione is great! So check out the database to learn more about the glutathione you're consuming in your current diet.

Have any thoughts or experiences to share? Leave a comment! Love the post? Share it and show it love!

The Glutathione Database

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Listen to the Podcast

This resource has a corresponding podcast, episode 40 of Mastering Nutrition: Why You Should Eat Glutathione. The podcast covers the topic of consuming glutathione in more detail, including an expanded view of why it survives digestion.

Other Searchable Nutrient Databases

If you found this database useful, try searching the vitamin K2 database, part of The Ultimate Vitamin K2 Resource.

Technical Notes About Glutathione Supplements

Comparing Sublingual Glutathione to Regular Glutathione

This was a randomized crossover study comparing N-acetyl-cysteine, reduced glutathione, and sublingual glutathione. Everyone underwent all three trials, and each trial lasted three weeks. During each trial, the subjects came in for measurements at the beginning, middle, and end. The most rigorous way to analyze the data is to look compare the ending value for each trial rather than the change during the trial. This is a protection against regression to the mean.

Using this approach, reduced glutathione was 8% higher after the sublingual trial than after the regular trial. The ratio of reduced glutathione to oxidized glutathione was 27% higher. To reach a 230% difference, the marketing materials of the sublingual product take advantage of the fact that the ratio of reduced glutathione to oxidized glutathione increased from 47.55 to 56.97 in the sublingual group but decreased from 51.68 to 44.76 in the regular group and compare the changes. This is not statistically sound. The fact that the ratio started off higher in the regular group than in the sublingual group means that it had more room to randomly fall while the sublingual group had more room to randomly rise. The principle by which randomly high things tend to fall down to the average and randomly low things tend to rise up to the average is called “regression to the mean,” and I've explained it in detail here.

If the ratio was 27% higher after sublingual glutathione and sublingual glutathione is 488% more expensive, then sublingual glutathione is 384% overpriced.

Comparing 250 mg to 1000 mg Oral Glutathione

The study that compared 250 mg to 1000 mg of oral glutathione reported most of its data as change from baseline, which, as described in the note above, is vulnerable to regression to the mean. Although a visual examination of the data does make it appear as though 1000 mg creates a larger effect that takes less time to kick in than 250 mg, there were no statistically significant differences between groups. Even if there were statistically significant differences between groups, we would not be able to rule out regression to the mean as a cause, since the absolute values for most measurements were not reported.

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103 Comments

  1. While I consistently read that oral or sublingual glutathione has no reported side effects, I’ve tried almost every one on the market and my stomach and gut cannot tolerate any of them. So if any of you are also hyper-sensitive, what I do is take NAC, plus powdered glycine and some glutamate. I read up on the proportions of these in glutathione and attempt to follow that. The glycine and glutamine dissolve in water with stirring so it’s easy to take and tastes fine. I don’t know if it’s as effective as the glutathione supplements, but I’m getting benefits from it. For what it’s worth.

  2. Grateful for this article! Here is some subjective data for you: The four adults in our house took PE liposomal glutathione at your recommendation (what I had). Three felt significantly better – more energy, clarity- and the fourth got terribly depressed. One that felt better has just been diagnosed with mold toxicity (where from, I don’t know yet) and the other 2 have bad candida (and maybe mold too, have not check). So, it makes sense that those 3 felt better with the glutathione. Thanks again!

  3. Hi,
    Lab tests showed low Glutathione levels so I supplemented with capsules. Alleviated symptoms of fatigue, but made me very hungry and gained lots of weight. Same experience reported from sister and nephew. Looked it up and one study of 10 people showed only 1 person having this reaction. What is the possible explanation? Btw, switching to Liposomal increased effectiveness and neutralized hunger.

  4. Exactly the kind of write-up I was looking for. Thank you for the accurate comparisons.It sheds some light on so many misleading marketing information. I would really like to see such a comparison of IV, Liposomal, Reduced and s-acetyl forms of Glutathione and their effects in skin whitening. Millions of people are going crazy about it. Would love to see some proofs/studies/comparisons and your thoughts.

  5. I would like to re-submit my comment as I did not receive any reply?
    Lynne Wood says
    April 2, 2019 at 1:50 pm

    Speaking of genetics — I have no GSTM1 gene on either chromosome, meaning my detox capability is severely compromised. I have taken liposomal glutathione (about 428 mg./tsp. on an empty stomach every day for at least 10 years), and can’t tell if it is helping or not. I don’t trust my compromised digestive system to handle a pill, and I don’t do well on NAC. I have no doubt that my “toxic barrel” is overflowing. Any guidance on this would be much appreciated.

    1. My MD has given me a ton of recommendations, among them Liposomal (vs reduced) Glutathione with HCL (hydrochloric acid) at each meal to boost the compromised digestive system. I can’t afford the liposomal, and will try the Jarrow just to see. Ask your doctor if HCL can help your digestive system?

  6. hi chris
    i follow much of your nutritional advice,but i found a brand of glutathione
    named setria ,a well known doc reccomended it amazon 150 caps of 250 mg
    is 22 bucks the 500 mg is 38.oo.the brand name is healthy origins.i wish a was
    your friend . all the best jack

      1. You keep pushing this brand and it is just reduced glutathione, nothing more. They label it n-(n-l-gamma-glutamyl-l-cysteinyl) glycine instead of just reduced glutathione. That label doesn’t make it better. You also could use the IUPAC name, if you think it makes it better:
        (2S)-2-amino-5-oxo-5-[[(2R)-1-oxo-1-[(2-oxo-2-propan-2-yloxyethyl)amino]-3-sulfanylpropan-2-yl]amino]pentanoic acid

  7. I was curious as to why a low carb diet reduces glutathione synthesis. I have not seen this elsewhere and thats probably a issue if one is keto. I didn’t see any info on that. Could you provide me with additional information? I would like to know if I should be supplementing if I am keto. Thanks

  8. 2 links. 1st is a 48 page PDF by a Dr Ben Lynch re Glutathione interolerance pretty useful yet much way over my head. 2nd is by a nutritionist specializing in such as histamine intolerance, IBS etc.. This is about a special form of reduced Glutathione found on Amazon and if you are so impressed via article may provide a link to this so you benefit from us purchasing via your helpful article.
    https://wanp.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/Lynch-B.-Glutathione-Histamine.pdf
    https://alisonvickery.com.au/new-ingredient-glutathione-setria/

  9. My lyme/Bartonella doctor has me on researched nutritionals tri fortify liposomal glutathione. It’s very expensive at $90 a tube and approximately 48 servings. Do you think this one is better than the core brand? I guess it does have more servingsbut the core brand does seem to come in at less cost anyway. I was just curious what your thoughts are on comparing the two brands.

    This brand recommends taking it on an empty stomach. Have you found this to be the case?

  10. What’s an optimal leve of glutathione in a blood test.Had my levels checked and it was 270 something can’t recall exactly. The lab doesn’t give a range for normal or optimal.

    1. My brother is disabled with Cerebral Palsy. The little guy is fed through a tube so nutrition is a very big challenge. He gets respiratory congestion very frequently. Many tests have been done and nothing. Only cause might have been acid reflux but highly unlikely. I’ll be supplementing with some glutathione supplement. I’ll keep you posted.

  11. Hi, Thank you, great article!
    Do you know if oral Acetyl Glutathione will protect DNA from CatScan radiation ?
    If so how many MG daily would you recommend and for how many months?
    And can you take glutathione indefinitely?

  12. I have tried the liposomal glutathione gelcaps and two different liquid liposomal glutathiones. All of them destroy my stomach and/or esophagus. It’s not a pH thing – I brought the pH up to 7.0 with baking soda (suggested by one manufacturer) and my reaction was the same. I do have a number of serious, chronic conditions (as well as genes that prevent normal production of glutathione) that keep my stomach sensitive. Is there any reason to think that taking the Jarrow capsules you recommend would be different? I just discovered that a compounding pharmacy will make transdermal glutathione? Other than financially, do you see any downside to that?

    1. Since this first came out- I have been researching ways to change the expression of genes that normally prevent normal glutathione production. I’ve made an intriguing discovery and in the last 6 months, I’ve improved my health and also witnessed other clients improving their health as well. Many of us struggled with nutrient deficiencies that would normally be attributed to our methylation and other “genetic” variant issues. I highly recommend researching the production of glutathione vs. the supplementation of it.

      1. Hello Sarah,

        When you say you’ve made a discovery, do you mean supplementing with glutathione precursors? I’ve been taking n-acetyl cysteine for a long time, but am about to add glutamine and glycine, which are the other two components. I’m not sure about ratios – I can’t find any guidance on that. I also have to be careful with glutamine, because I have a lot of GAD1 snps, so too much causes a lot of pain and inflammation. If you’ve made a different discovery, I would humbly ask that you point me in the right direction, if possible. Thank you.

      1. Speaking of genetics — I have no GSTM1 gene on either chromosome, meaning my detox capability is severely compromised. I have taken liposomal glutathione (about 428 mg./tsp. on an empty stomach every day for at least 10 years), and can’t tell if it is helping or not. I don’t trust my compromised digestive system to handle a pill, and I don’t do well on NAC. I have no doubt that my “toxic barrel” is overflowing. Any guidance on this would be much appreciated.

  13. Can you take liposomal glutathione and NAC simultaneously if severely depleted in glutathione? Will taking liposomal switch off the body’s ability to generate its own glutathione? Many thanks for your comprehensive and well researched articles.

    1. I wouldn’t bother with the NAC in that case. In theory taking any GSH should downregulate GSH production but a human study showed that 6 months of taking GSH did not suppress GSH synthesis in the people’s red blood cells.

  14. I’ve been prescribed liquid Glutathione for injection.Can you take the liquid Glutathione, by mouth. Holding it your mouth for absorption for a few minutes then spitting it out? Shots get pretty pain full

  15. Thanks for the well researched and structured article.
    Question – do you really notice that taking a gram of glutathione alleviates a “wheeze?” And when you say you “wheeze” is this from asthma or what? Please clarify.

    Glutathione has been on our radar – but the conflicting information on its ability to actually make it into the cells and tissues is what has stopped us from adding it to our regimen. We’ve become tired of taking supps that do not deliver some sort of measurable difference.

    Thanks

    1. I do, that’s why I said it. I can’t clarify if it’s “asthma” because I know when I wheeze but I don’t have a doctor on hand to diagnose it as asthma.

  16. What about NRF2 pathway activation and it’s purported ability to boost antioxidant production? Have you taken a look at that? It has my hive in a buzz. We are shredding up PubMed left and right but not finding anyone (like you) who has taken this for a spin.

      1. Ah yes you linked to one of the studies we have discussed. So why aren’t you more interested in activating that NRF2 pathway to increase the production of antioxidants?

  17. Chris, thank you for all your work. I started taking 500mg of oral glutathione and after a couple days got very sick with nausea and fatigue. What could this be?? I have T1 diabetes, hypothyroidism and NDPH (new daily persistent headache). Could it be a detox reaction?

  18. What about S Acetyl Glutathione? that appears to be cheaper and from what some folks are saying it is more absorb able than liposomal.

  19. Hi Chris,

    Personally, been a bit nervy for a while now about taking NAC or glutathione on a regular basis after I read studies about how thiol antioxidant supplement (as well as vitamin E, I believe) significantly suppress not just macro autophagy but basal as well. In turn, such supplements can work to negate AMPK-activation benefits related to such nutraceuticals, such as curcumin and berberine.

    Many chronic health conditions are characterised by high oxidative stress but also it dysfunctional autophagy, resulting in suboptimal clearing of misfolded proteins. Does this mean that glutathione-related supplements should be taken every other day or so in order to achieve some sort of balance between autophagy and ROS scavenging??

    Many thanks for you excellent blog and podcast.

  20. Interesting I was always dubious about consuming glutathione in oral form as i’d heard it was just be digested and not utilised so it’s good to know that’s not the case.

  21. I have a simple solution : purchase liposomal or free glutathione, mix your dose of choice with 1ml of MCT oil. Then, suck the glutathione/MCT into a pipette or syringe (syringe, NOT needle). Lube the tip of the pipette/syringe with vaseline/MCT, and administer it intrarectally.

    Bioavailability should be high (almost as much as IV), the MCT should help it absorb, 1/3 of the glutathione will instantly hit the liver (portal vein), the rest will hit the rest of the body.

    I might start doing this daily hahah, I feel as though it would be very helpful for health. It’s basically a suppository. I have had really good experiences with NAC, but glutathione seems to be much better. Never tried gluathione though so we’ll see.

    I also think an intranasal liposomal glutathione would be extremely interesting. The nasal route would increase brain concentrations extremely extremely high, and the lipsomal aspect would make the penetration even higher. Bet it would be great for cognition.

    The sky’s the limit.

  22. Thanks for an interesting resource. However, I am confused by some of the items in the database. For example, spinach says it has Reduced Glutathione (GSH) 12.3 ± 23 — so the glutathione can be anything from -10.7 mg/100g to +35.3 mg/100g — how can it have a negative amount of glutathione? Is this a typo (in which case I saw several others), or is it due to some countering factor in spinach?

    Also, are the values in the database for cooked or raw spinach?

    Thanks!

  23. Question? I was taught in my Masters program in clinical nutrition that oral glutathione gets destroyed in the gut from the gastric juices. That’s why sublinguinal or IV injection are the recommended method for pure glutathione. Or one could supplement with NAC and collagen , and low dose DHEA (5-10 mg to help it’s absorption). Nutriwest makes an affordable sublingual glutathione, too.

  24. Thanks chris! Can glutathione be taken on an empty stomach, or will that cause less absorption or GI upset?

    On a side note, Do you think 1.5 teaspoons a day of cod liver oil providing vitamins A/D/E and 1.5 grams total of DHA and EPA (in favor of DHA) is safe to use? My diet is otherwise low in PUFAs and I make sure I get in 4-6 egg yolks a day, and 2-4 oz chicken liver daily. I was using 2-3 grams total of EPA/DHA a day (in favor of EPA) for several years and my diet was deficient in Arachidonic acid which I found out through a fatty acid RBC analysis. I developed many GI problems (very gradually) over that time and after reading your article my unbalanced intake of the omegas and AA has led to it. I am trying to reverse that now.

  25. Are there any cases where it would be contraindicated? My husband has a blood cancer called polycythemia vera and they have him on Pegasys interferon and hydroxyurea and I worry about what these meds might be depleting.

  26. Any thoughts or feels about Bulletproof’s Glutathione Force compared to Core Med Science Optimized Liposomal Glutathione? They claim “proprietary compound of phosphatidylcholine, palmitic acid and oleic acid to encapsulate and deliver glutathione in its complete form to the small intestine”

    1. Well, if it’s proprietary, and there are no studies, it’s kind of hard to develop any thoughts.

  27. Chris, with the assumption that any and all decisions should be first discussed with a healthcare provider, what’s your risk assessment of various methods of direct glutathione supplementation during pregnancy or lactation?

    If it avoids the mother having to take an antibiotics course to fix an infection (and resulting detrimental impact on fetus/nursing infant), it has done a really good deed. Thanks

    1. I’m not familiar with any research in this area. However, glutathione is found in food and at the doses discussed in this post I would be surprised if there were any pregnancy risks to it.

      1. Thanks Chris. That is what I was assuming as well. Particularly when the supplements are only taken temporarily during times of duress (i.e. likely glutathione depletion).

  28. I would also like to know if supplementing with glutathione may reduce your body’s own synthesis of it?

    1. Mr Beef, the six-month study found synthesis was unaffected in red blood cells, but they didn’t show the raw data and they didn’t measure it in other tissues. I assume that somewhere the synthesis will be reduced, because glutathione regulates its own synthesis through negative feedback. However, the effect on glutathione status is net positive, and it is normal to consume glutathione in foods.

  29. One thing I found lacking in the podcast is if cooking destroys glutathione on veggies. Potatoes are said to be pressure cooked to inactivate lectins; so Im wondering if high pressure cooking destroys glutathione on potatoes too.

    1. I think I mentioned spinach, didn’t I? If you compare the values you do see considerable loss in some foods. Some are more stable than others. Potatoes seem to be more stable, spinach less stable. Similarly, grapefruit seems to be extremely vulnerable to juicing, orange moderately so. For a better view, play with the database.

  30. Do you think rectal administration of reduced glutathione supplement would aid in absorption? I’ve read some at the skin-whitening crowd to use it that way.

    1. Please use bold, underline, and italics for “may be,” given that, to my knowledge, this has not been tested in humans.

  31. Hi Chris,

    Quick question about glutathione supplements (but I guess could be relevant to some other supplements, too).

    Will supplementation of exogenous glutathione down-regulate production of endogenous glutathione? I asked this question in relation to digestive enzymes once and was told that the body will down-regulate endogenous production.

    Is this correct?

    Many thanks,
    Ross

  32. Chris,

    Great information! I have shared it. I am one of those that does NAC for glutathione support. My immune status (I have Hashimoto’s) is much improved since living a clean lifestyle and eating real foods. There is of course, supplements that I use to continue to deliver optimal health. I am a studier of supplements. What is your take on the magnesium stearate that is indeed also found in Jarrow’s brand? I’d like to switch over, but the magnesium stearate tends to create poor absorbability, as vilified by Suzy Cohen and several others. Thanks again for what you do.

    1. Hi Carol,

      At the moment, I do not worry about Mg stearate because what I have seen of the vilification has not looked convincing, but I have not researched it exhaustively.

    1. Hi Sally,

      I get the point of nebulizing, but I haven’t researched it enough to give specific brand recommendations.

  33. Thank you, amazingly thorough review, a per usual! ;-)) I am also wandering if you looked at S-acetyl glutathione and do you think its as effective or more effective than the liposomal form? And does it seem more expensive than Liposomal? TIA!

  34. Great article! Do you have any recommendations for relatively low-cost lab tests that might help to quantify GSH status / needs? (I see a “Glutathione Blood Test” offered by LEF for $112.)

    I’ve been curious what an ideal approach might look like for cycling phytochemicals, GSH-cofactors, and GSH itself around a low-carb high-fat diet. I see benefits for all of these strategies, but it doesn’t seem ideal to do them all together daily.

  35. Chris,
    Thank you for yet another invaluable article le on glutathione. To your knowledge, does supplemental glutathione affect the body’s endogenous production of the same?
    Thanks!
    Lilian

    1. I just checked it… it says $42.99 for the 120 @ Lucky. Amazon has it right now for $36 PLUS they have a 15% off coupon the first time you buy it. Bulk Supplements on Amazon has it cheaper if you want to buy a crazy large amount, but then it’s not in pills either (and Jarrow is a great company).

    2. I’d never heard of them, but Kai found it is less expensive on Amazon. Thanks for pointing out Lucky though.

    1. So taking an NAC supplement with a glass of water+hydrolyzed Collagen would do the trick, yes?

      You get the glutathione/glycine benefit plus of all the other amino acids and collagen!

    2. I would really like to know this as well. I haven’t seen Chris mention it but there is research that shows it is effective.

      1. Interesting, though that’s in neuronal cells and like I said there’s nothing in humans.

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