Monday, January 20, 2014

Omega 3's, L-Glutamine, and a 30 Day Experiment

My husband thinks that supplements are a scam...That's why, when I told him I wanted to buy 2 of them to try, he just shook his head.

I don't remember where he read that at least 20% of vitamins and supplements are scams, but I kind of see where that could be believable. People are looking for easy ways out in terms of weight loss, mental focus, etc that the health industry would be dumb to not make money satisfying their "need" for an easy to swallow solution.

I am half with him, and the other half of me is one of those people. Sort of.

I'm not looking for a pill that will fix everything while I sit on my butt and watch tv, but I am looking for some different nutrients that could help give me a boost, so that I can more successfully carry out my own plans to achieve my goals. Nothing crazy, just the basics.

I've been looking at a lot of different resources that could help me start feeling more healthy and deal with my crazy sugar cravings, and there's two that I've come across that seem legitimate enough for me to try: Omega-3's, and L-Glutamine. Here's a rundown on what I've been able to find on each of them (what they do, how much to take, all that jazz). I'll also post updates later on whether or not I got any positive results or if they're just money-making placebos like hubby says.

Up first...


Q: What are they?
A: Omega-3 Fatty Acids are a type of polyunsaturated fatty acids that are found in fatty fish (think salmon or tuna) and some vegetable oils. Omega-3 fatty acids are important for several types of body functions, including muscle activity, blood clotting, digestion, fertility, and cell division and growth. They are considered essential fatty acids, which means we need them for our bodies to work normally. Our bodies don't make them, so we need to get them from our diet.

Q: What are Supposed Health Benefits of Taking Omega-3's?
A: Extensive research indicates that omega-3 fats reduce inflammation, helping to prevent inflammatory diseases like heart disease and arthritis. In addition to warding off inflammation, omega-3’s are also essential to the brain, impacting behavior and cognitive function, and are especially necessary during fetal development. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMM), omega-3’s may also:
  • Improve artery health by helping to reduce plaque buildup and blood clots in arteries that lead to the brain.
  • Improve cholesterol by lowering triglycerides and elevating HDL (good cholesterol) levels. These benefits come primarily from DHA and EPA.
  • Improve joint health by reducing joint tenderness and stiffness associated with arthritis
  • Improve bone health by positively impacting the body's calcium levels, reducing the incidence of bone loss.
  • Improve mental health by helping to insulate nerve cells in the brain, allowing these nerve cells to better communicate with one another. People who are deficient in omega-3’s may suffer from depression bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, eating disorders, and ADHD.
  • Improve skin health by helping to alleviate symptoms related to skin disorders like acne and psoriasis.
  • Improve bowel health by reducing inflammation of the bowels, helping alleviate symptoms of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
  • Improve lung health by reducing inflammation in diseases like asthma.
  • Improve menstrual health by reducing the pain associated with PMS and menstruation.
  • Help prevent cancer. Colon, breast, and prostate cancers have all been correlated with low intakes of omega-3's
Q: How Much to Take per Day?
A: The average daily dosage for Omega-3 supplements is 600 to 1000 mg

And our second supplement of choice...


Q: What is it?
A: L-Glutamine is an amino acid, which is a building block for proteins that make our bodies function. The body is able to make it, but when sick or under stress it often doesn't make enough. Body builders often use it, but it has many other health benefits besides building muscle.

Q: What are Supposed Health Benefits of Taking Omega-3's?
  • Glutamine is the primary source of energy for the cells lining the intestinal tract. Supplementation has been proven in studies to help with overall gut healthy, including the healing of IBS and ulcers. 
  • L-glutamine is also beneficial for your brain. Not only does it help with memory function but also seems to help elevate your mood. 
  • L-glutamine helps increase protein production, which helps to heal and strengthen muscles more quickly after working out.
  • It can also help your immune system get stronger which means your body will be better at fighting infections.
  • L- glutamine reduces sugar cravings. When your blood sugar level drops, Glutamine tells your body to stop producing insulin so that blood sugar levels stop decreasing. It also tells your body to product more glycogen (a stored form of glucose) to bring your body's blood sugar level to normal. Glutamine is also a glycogenic amino acid, which means it can convert sugar to energy production.
 Q: How Much to Take per Day?
A: The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends taking 500 mg three times a day.

I'm going to give these two supplements a try for one month, and then check back in here to let you know what improvements I'm seeing (if any!). The good news is, I only wasted about $10 if this does nothing!


1 comment:

  1. Oh sweet! Great info. Definitely keep us posted. I eat 0 fish so the omega-3 should definitely be something to try.