What Are The Causes Of Low Glutathione Levels?

Published : 03/09/2016 13:44:52
Categories : Longevity

Low levels of cellular glutathione are usually the result of a lifestyle that is characterized by numerous factors that deplete glutathione.

Glutathione deficiency leads to:

  • Increased oxidative stress
  • Significant decrease in the body's ability to carry out the functions of detoxification
  • Accumulation of toxins and heavy metals
  • Inability to repair DNA
  • Cell mutations
  • Debilitated cell membranes
  • Reduced supply of oxygen and nutrients to cells
  • Eventual cell death

These processes directly affect the state of the immune system and often become the leading cause of disease onset or progression, severity thereof and response to treatment.

Low levels of glutathione can also interfere with prescribed treatments and may even aggravate the base condition because drugs cause greater depletion of glutathione levels. For example, it has been scientifically documented that glutathione levels can predict how long patients with HIV are able to survive, or how well and what degree of tolerance cancer patients may have to chemotherapy and radiation.

Research has shown that almost all chronic conditions are characterized by glutathione deficiency: HIV / AIDS, Alzheimer's disease, asthma, all type of cancers, cataracts, macular degeneration, glaucoma (only open angle), syndrome chronic fatigue, diabetes, autoimmune disorders, liver disease, kidney, lung, heart and digestive system diseases, fibromyalgia, flu and colds, peripheral neuropathy, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, disorders skin, seizures, tumors, disorders of autism spectrum as well as some acute diseases or medical conditions, such as burns, physical trauma and any type of surgery.

Only people with serious chronic illnesses and those undergoing aggressive treatments tend to suffer a serious deficiency of glutathione. In other cases, generally they respond quickly and positively to even minimal increases in glutathione levels.

People who are in good health may not have necessarily low levels of glutathione, but still may have slightly decreased levels of this antioxidant.

The main reason for this is aging, because the production of glutathione in the cells naturally decreases at an average rate of 10% per decade after age 20.

Second, on a daily basis we are all exposed to environmental pollution; exhaust fumes, smoke, viruses and do not consume daily home-cooked meals with 7-9 servings of organic vegetables and fruits a day, so this is a secondary cause of low glutathione levels in blood.

Symptoms that need attention may include:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Weakness / lack of energy
  • Inability to stay focused or concentrate
  • Joint pain
  • Eruptions
  • Dry Skin
  • Sleep disorders
  • Depression
  • Frequent colds

Healthy people may not notice instant results when levels of glutathione are raised. However, you will notice the improvement in energy levels, mental clarity, improved sleep and mood, and you'll have fewer colds. Those who train several times a week will have a faster recovery with reduced muscle pain and improved athletic performance.

Constant low glutathione levels can be caused by mutations in the missing gene GSTT1, GSTM1, GSTM2, GSTP1, MTHFR C677T homozygotes and others. These genes regulate the production and activity of glutathione enzymes and their metabolism affect cysteine, folic acid and B group vitamin. These glutathione enzymes and cofactors regulate the amount of glutathione our body is capable of produce.

While low glutathione levels, can be treated with changes in lifestyle, the results are faster with intravenous administration of nutrients that promote its synthesis.


  1. Glutathione Deficiency. 
  2. What every doctor should know about glutathione. 

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