Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid (protein building block) in the body and is involved in more metabolic processes than any other amino acid. Glutamine is converted to glucose when more glucose is required by the body as an energy source. Glutamine serves as a source of fuel for cells lining the intestines, without it these cells waste away. It is also used by white blood cells and is important for immune function. Glutamine in combination with N-Acetyl Cysteine promotes the synthesis of Glutathione Peroxidase, a naturally-occurring antioxidant. This endogenous antioxidant is key to protecting the equine athlete from exercise-induced free radical damage.
In humans glutamine is considered useful to anyone undergoing training for endurance sports such as long distance running or cycling, and can help to reduce the incidence of cramps caused through repetitive strain. Because Glutamine can help in this regard, it is also recommended for elderly people who suffer from cramps and regular muscle pain as a natural alternative to chemical pain killers. Although studies into the glutamine requirements of horses are few, there is strong evidence that glutamine levels may not be optimal in exercising horses. Research has found that exercise in horses results in a drop in blood levels of glutamine to those which are considered deficiency levels for a human athlete, indicating that glutamine levels in equine athletes are borderline, at best.
Inadequate glutamine severely compromises the immune system at every level and also compromises the synthesis of the key anti-oxidant glutathioni
Glutamine supplementation is useful:
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