What Is a Gluthathione Antioxidant?

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  • Written By: Marlene Garcia
  • Edited By: Daniel Lindley
  • Last Modified Date: 27 January 2020
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Gluthathione antioxidant is a protein molecule of amino acids produced in the liver, where toxins typically accumulate. This substance supports the body’s immune system and aids in preventing cell damage from free radicals. Gluthathione exists in many foods, including a wide range of meats, fruits, vegetables, and dairy products. It is also available as a supplement in alternative medicine taken orally, inhaled, or injected. Some research shows that when when gluthathione antioxidant is taken orally, the body does not absorb it.

When the supplements are used in alternative medicine, practitioners say they detoxify the body to counteract the effects of cancer-causing toxins. The substance is also marketed as an aid to treat high cholesterol, hardening of the arteries, cystic fibrosis, and other diseases. Other uses include Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and chronic fatigue syndrome. Gluthathione antioxidant taken orally might be worthless, according to some small studies. It may be helpful when inhaled for certain disorders.

The inhaled form of the supplement might help people who suffer from asthma, emphysema, cystic fibrosis, and other lung diseases. Preliminary studies with a small sampling of participants revealed some benefits for these disorders. Gluthathione antioxidant supplements are not approved by agencies that regulate drugs, meaning their effectiveness has not been established.


In its injected form, gluthathione antioxidant might help offset the negative effects of chemotherapy on the immune system. Chemotherapy as a cancer treatment typically kills off carcinogenic cells along with healthy cells that fight infection. A prescription is needed for the injected and inhaled forms of this supplement.

Gluthathione occurs naturally in a wide array of foods. Avocados, walnuts and asparagus contain especially high levels of the antioxidant. Some dairy products, including yogurt, cottage cheese, and ricotta cheese, are rich in these amino acids. It can also be found in many meats, beans, and legumes. Fruits and vegetables high in gluthathione include watermelon, spinach, tomatoes, and broccoli.

There are no known side effects from using supplements of the substance. Interactions do occur with alcohol and acetaminophen, however. Acetaminophen and alcohol might negate any potential benefits when supplements are used as a detoxifying agent because the acetaminophen and alcohol deplete gluthathione from the body. Other unidentified drugs or substances might also interact with gluthathione supplements.

Safe dosages for this supplement have not been established by medical researchers. The average dose for oral supplements ranges from 50 to 600 milligrams a day. When inhaled, the typical dose is 600 milligrams twice a day. A formula using a patient’s height and weight typically determines the dose of the injected form of glutathione antioxidant, which averages 600 milligrams each day or every other day.


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