Glutamine could fight inflammation in obese people

According to British researchers in Sweden, glutamine, an amino acid that is synthesized by the human body but can also be obtained from the diet, could perhaps help reduce inflammation of fatty tissues in obese people and generally reduce fat mass.

The research, carried out by scientists at the Karolinska Institutet, Sweden, and the University of Oxford, shows that glutamine can alter gene expression in various types of human cells even though the researchers themselves state that further research will be necessary to deepen this link. Meanwhile, a first study has already been published in Cell Metabolism.

Among the main roles that glutamine has for the human body there is above all that of maintaining good intestinal health. In general, however, it can also have anti-inflammatory effects on white blood cells or T-cells. For this study the researchers analyzed the adipose tissue taken from the abdomen of 52 obese women and 29 non-obese women. The researchers noted that the main difference in comparing the two sample groups was in glutamine.

The obese women had lower levels of this amino acid in adipose tissue than the other group. In turn, lower levels of glutamine were linked to larger fat cell sizes and generally a higher percentage of fat, even regardless of body mass index. As a result, this shows that glutamine could be useful against obesity, as suggested by Mikael Ryden himself, professor at the Huddinge Department of Medicine at the Swedish Institute and corresponding author of the study.

Ryden himself specifies that further studies are needed, however, because we already know, for example, that glutamine plays a key role in cell division and cancer metabolism. Glutamine itself, therefore, could have side effects that we do not yet know about at the moment, and therefore, before recommending it as a supplement for obesity, much more in-depth research will have to be carried out. In the meantime, however, researchers also carried out experiments on mice and showed that rats injected with glutamine for two weeks showed less inflammation of fat tissue, reduced blood glucose levels and lower lean mass.

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