Oxidative Stress and Glutathione

February, 2018

Oxidative stress in the outside world is the chemistry that causes things to rust. Inside your body it causes damage to the proteins that keep the cells and their membranes running. Glutathione protects your cells against free radicals that cause oxidative stress.

“Glutathione deficiency contributes to oxidative stress, which plays a key role in aging and the pathogenesis of many diseases (including seizure, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, liver disease, cystic fibrosis, sickle cell anemia, HIV, AIDS, cancer, heart attack, stroke, and diabetes). New knowledge of the nutritional regulation of GSH metabolism is critical for the development of effective strategies to improve health and to treat these diseases.”
PMID: 14988435

Cell and Oxidative Stress

Free radicals, formed when oxygen interacts with molecules, must be neutralized or they will cause cells to “rust”, meaning they will die or perform poorly. Studies have shown that oxidative stress increases with aging, and over time, free radicals can lead to degenerative diseases: heart disease, memory problems, cancer, diabetes, arthritis.

Glutathione is considered the most important antioxidant because it is the only antioxidant capable of working with enzymes. One enzyme, glutathione peroxidase, works with GSH to prevent membranes from being “rusted” or oxidized. Glutathione also helps activate the better-known antioxidants, vitamin C and vitamin E.