“Antioxidant” has become a huge buzzword among health buffs and within the fitness industry over the past few years, and with good reason. Glutathione is definitely at the top of the list when it comes to antioxidants you should be ingesting to fight damage from free radicals, which ultimately protect your cells from cancer, aging, and tons of diseases.
Glutathione and Other Antioxidants Protect Cells
Before getting into glutathione, AKA the “master antioxidant”, itself, here’s a brief refresher on free radicals and antioxidants. Free radicals are essentially bits of matter that go around disrupting the molecular structure of various cells in your body. WebMD uses a vivid example to illustrate what free radicals do: it’s the same chemical reaction that causes a sliced apple to turn brown (not exactly something that sounds good for your health!). Theories abound that link free radical proliferation to cancer, premature aging, and countless diseases.
Antioxidants, on the other hand, are nature’s way of combating free radicals. The reason glutathione is so important is that it is an extremely powerful antioxidant. According to an article in Pharmacognosy Review, glutathione changes the structure of free radicals and prevents them from damaging other cells, while also repairing already-damaged cells.
Glutathione: The Master Antioxidant
That brings us to glutathione, the master antioxidant. This modest molecule has been purported to cure or prevent everything ranging from infertility and anemia to AIDS, Alzheimer’s, and cancer. An article in Science News from early last year reported that a recent University of Colorado study found that glutathione made brain tumors more susceptible to chemotherapy, reducing the amount of treatment necessary and protecting healthy cells. Not bad for one molecule.