In the world of bodybuilding, sports, health, and fitness supplementation, it has to be said that glutamine, or L-Glutamine, as it is sometimes known, is one of the most beneficial and effective supplements currently available, and for very good reason as well.
When people think of bodybuilding, they tend to think of creatine and protein, and although both of those supplements are indeed highly beneficial, it has to be said that we shouldn’t overestimate the importance of amino acids.
In terms of glutamine best timing windows, benefits of glutamine, and glutamine effects on muscle growth, we’ll be covering all of these aspects in great detail in this article, along with much more besides.
Bodybuilding and building muscle in general, is difficult enough as it is, without the need to overcomplicate things by getting supplements and various specialist foods involved.
Sadly however, if you get your diet and nutrition wrong, you simply are not going to make any real progress anytime soon.
Lifting weights is only half of the battle, and in fact, although training hard in the gym may seem difficult, in comparison to eating right, and using the right supplements at the right time, the actual training side of things is as simple as ABC.
As mentioned, there are many different supplements out there which are designed to help you build muscle and burn fat, and one of which, the one which we’ll be focussing on in this article, is Glutamine.
Contained within, we’ll be looking at what glutamine is, benefits of glutamine, glutamine best timing windows, glutamine effects on muscle growth, and much more besides.
So, without any further hesitation, let’s learn a little more about the humble supplement that is Glutamine.
What Is Glutamine?
Glutamine is actually the most common form of naturally occurring amino acid found within our muscles.
In actual fact, just over 61% of all of our skeletal muscle is made up of glutamine, so that alone, should tell you all you need to know about which role glutamine plays in muscle growth.
It is also made up of nearly 20% nitrogen, which means that it is the number one nitrogen transporter within our muscles, shuttling this compound to and from our muscles.
It is considered by experts to be an essential amino acid, due to the fact that, although our bodies can synthesize it naturally, at times the amounts we can synthesize naturally will be limited.
This is especially obvious when people are suffering with a suppressed immune system, I.E in infants, in the elderly, and in people who happen to be sick and battling an illness.
In instances where glutamine levels are deemed as too low, it will then need to be consumed in a dietary form I.E in whole foods or in supplement form.
When individuals are healthy and fit, synthesizing this amino acid is no problem, although that doesn’t mean that they still can’t benefit from additional glutamine supplementation, because they can.
There are also times when glutamine levels can drop pretty dramatically, which is especially apparent during intense periods of physical activity and exercise.
During these spells, glutamine levels within the muscles can deplete very quickly, which in turn leads to a lack of energy, stamina, strength, and endurance.
During these instances, it doesn’t just take a few hours for glutamine levels to replenish themselves, it can take around 6 entire days.
For anybody trying to maintain or build lean muscle, this is far from ideal as glutamine plays a vital role in protein synthesis.
This means that glutamine can help the body to synthesize and build new muscle proteins, and can prevent the breakdown of muscle tissue following intensive workouts.
What Are The Main Benefits Of Glutamine?
Now that we know a little more about what glutamine is and why we need it, here is a more detailed look at a few of the main glutamine benefits of glutamine supplementation:
As mentioned, one of the main benefits associated with glutamine that has bodybuilders so excited about glutamine, is the fact that it plays a key role in protein synthesis.
Protein synthesis is a natural process in which the body synthesizes new muscle proteins to replace damaged/worn ones, such as those which have taken a battering during an intensive workout.
For any bodybuilder, athlete, or simply somebody trying to maintain or build as much muscle as they possibly can, glutamine is a very beneficial supplement indeed.
Easy To Consume
Another great benefit associated with glutamine, particularly glutamine powder supplements, is the fact that it is so easy and simple to consume.
Studies have found that glutamine can be consumed at a number of different times in relation to your workouts and physical activity levels, with each one providing its own unique benefits and drawbacks.
What we can all agree on however, is that consuming it is not difficult as the powder can be mixed with water, or it can be combined with other supplements such as creatine, pre-workout supplements, or protein supplements, where it will quickly and effectively be absorbed by the body.
Increases Cell Volume
Another very unique benefit associated with glutamine supplements is the fact that glutamine has been found by a number of highly respected experts, to increase cell volume.
What does this mean?
Well, quite simply, it allows the cells to absorb more water, oxygen, and nutrients, thus increasing their size and volume.
This then has two main benefits.
The first is that, as they are now able to absorb more nutrients, energy, and oxygen, the cells, I.E the cells within the muscles, become more efficient, allowing the muscles to work harder and for longer, before they become tired and fatigued. T
he second benefit is that, as the cells have increased in volume, this then means that the muscles also increase in volume, so you look bigger and fuller, which, from a bodybuilding perspective, is a dream come true.
Boosts The Immune System
Another benefit which benefits everybody, and not just bodybuilders, is the fact that glutamine has been found in a number of different studies, to greatly enhance and increase the immune system in a wide variety of different individuals, of all shapes and sizes.
The stronger your immune system, the healthier you become and the less likely you are to get sick.
What you may not have realised, however, is that, as working out depletes your glutamine levels, as glutamine plays a key role in immunity, if you have low levels of glutamine in your body, you will then be far more likely to get sick, which will keep you out of the gym, and will keep you on the sidelines.
Regular glutamine supplementation, however, keeps you fitter and healthier than ever before.
Enhanced Hormone Levels
Well, guess which hormones glutamine helps the body to naturally produce more of?
Yep, you got it, boosting HGH and testosterone is also one of the top benefits of glutamine.
Just 2 additional grams of glutamine per day, can increase HGH production by up to 400%!
This is what causes a lot of people such headaches when it comes to glutamine supplementation, as they simply are not sure when it is best to consume glutamine.
Some people consume it pre-workout.
Some consume it Intra-workout, and some consume it post-workout.
In reality, however, studies have found that consuming glutamine at all of those times can be very beneficial.
As one of benefits of glutamine is increasing energy and stamina, as well as helping to greatly assist with recovery.
Some people, therefore, choose to take their daily dosage, and consume it over the course of their entire workouts from start to finish.
One thing that all experts tend to agree on however, is that glutamine should always be consumed post-workout, due to the fact that it has been proven to play such an important role in muscle growth and repair.
For optimal results, why not add a scoop of glutamine to your post-workout whey protein shake, and in no time at all you’ll be reaping the rewards.