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kidneys and the glutathione connection

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Published: 10 years ago

kidneys and the glutathione connection

The kidneys are extremely important to our overall health. Proper nutrition can go far in giving our kikneys and other organs the boost they need to function at optima levels.

One thing you can do togive your kidneys the proper support is cut back on sodium. Cutting out fast foods and foods high in salt and fat is a good place to start. Salty and greasy foods can raise blood pressure, which can affect your kidney's ability to properly cleanse your blood. Drink plenty of water and juices. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables--especially dark fruits like cranberries, prunes, and plumbs which are high in antioxidant content.


As with other organs of the body, antioxidant activity -- particularly glutathione--plays a vital role in the kidneys. The kidneys are not unique in that oxidative stress, resulting from free radical activity, leads to problems of various kinds.

Speaking specifically of the kidneys, one article stated that "part of the oxidation burden originates in inadequacy of the body's own antioxidant enzymes." The article stated that diminished anti-oxidant levels, specifically glutathione and catalase, were the cause of oxidative stress in the kidneys, which led to other, even more significant problems.

The same article cited a study that tested the effect of the amino acid N-acetylcysteine (NAC), precursor to glutathione, and its ability to prevent oxidative injury in the kidneys. The study showed that NAC effectively inhibited destructive oxidant response.

According to one researcher, kidney (or renal) toxicity is often caused by "exposure to heavy metals such as mercury, cadmium and lead." Studies have shown that the body detoxifies these these substances primarily through glutathione-related enzymes. These glutathione enzymes have distinct distribution along the nephron in the kidneys, making them central to kidney detoxification and function.

By acting as both a detoxifier and antioxidant, glutathione prevented lipid peroxidation (which is the oxidation of llipids or fats by free radicals) in the kidneys and other organs. He cited a case study where treatments increasing intracellular glutathione levels led to marked improvement in kidney function in one patient.

The liver, kidneys, and urinary tract work together to expel toxins and wastes from the body. Because of the complementary functions of both organs, a number of studies have concurrently examined glutathione's role in the liver and kidneys.

A 2005 RiboCeine study conducted on mice set out to determine if enhanced glutathione through a RiboCeine treatment was able to protect against acetaminophen-induced toxicity in the liver and kidneys in one group of mice.

While another group was given a chemical compound that actually had the effect of reducing levels of glutathione in the cells. Not surprisingly, the acetaminophen-induced damage in the latter group was not dimished, while the RiboCeine treated group wa effectively protected against organ toxicity.

Another study examined the effects of a free radical scavenger -- a potential sulfhydryl group donor--on glutathione levels in the liver and kidneys in rats.

Six hours after the scavenger was adinistered, significant increases of glutathione were measured. The study concluded that the scavenger may have had a protective effet against free radical-induced tissue injury.

Such studies confirm that glutathione supports these vital organs in their ability to function more efficiently,, thus more effectively ridding the body of harmful toxins. Bu supplementing a healthy Diet with products provent to increase intracellular glutathione, we ease the burden of vital organs like the kidneys. Considering how hard such organs work for us, it's the least we can do.

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