L-glutamine remains the supplement of choice for many bodybuilders. It is a free form amino acid that can be found naturally in beans, meat, fish, poultry and dairy products. It is also an important component of protein powders and is one of the twenty non-essential amino acids found in the body.
It is widespread throughout the body and plays an important role in protein metabolism. From a bodybuilder’s perspective, glutamine’s strength is its ability to reduce the amount of muscle deterioration that occurs as a result of intense physical workouts. It is therefore beneficial to those wishing to maintain existing muscle as well as bodybuilders attempting to increase lean bulk.
Failure to replace the high levels of glutamine consumed during intense exercise could result in greater susceptibility to illness due to a weakening of the immune system. In addition, glutamine stolen from the muscles to maintain the immune system must be replaced to keep those muscles building.
Glutamine’s positive impact on the immune system, liver functioning and gastro-intestinal integrity suggests that it offers much in the way of general health benefits and is not simply a supplement of value only to the bodybuilding fraternity.
Bodybuilders can benefit from taking 10 grams of l-glutamine each day, preferably taken post-workout to enhance its recuperative effects. As a nutrient that occurs naturally in the body glutamine is safe to take although ingesting excessive amounts could cause an upset stomach.