Glutamine vs Glutamate – Are They the Same Thing?
Both Glutamine and Glutamate belong to a category of molecules found naturally in your body called amino acids. These are compounds that your body produces on its own and that you can replenish by eating certain foods- fish, red meat, eggs, milk and other high-protein foods.
While they may come from some of the same sources and they may even sound almost the same, Glutamine and Glutamate are different in subtle but important ways.
You may not have enough Glutamine in your body if you exercise or diet regularly. Your body uses this amino acid up as you exert yourself, and you may need to replenish it on a daily basis. That’s why Glutamine supplements are so popular among bodybuilders and dieters. They know that this supplement boosts their immune system, helps stimulate muscle growth, allows them to recover quicker and gives them more energy. It burns away fat, as it turns glucose from food into usable energy. It also protects the digestive system against ulcers and leaky gut.
While you can find it in many of the foods you eat, your body can only store so much at once, and it needs a lot in order to enjoy the benefits listed above. As you exert yourself, your Glutamine levels are going to drop, and supplementing is the easiest way to get those levels back where they need to be.
You probably don’t need to supplement with glutamate. This amino acid is likewise found in many of the foods you eat, and you don’t need very much of it at once. That means you can usually get what you need by eating certain foods. Even if you have a deficiency of Glutamate, you can simply increase your intake of certain foods to get it back where it needs to be.
Glutamate’s benefits are a bit different from Glutamine’s. It aids in brain functions, helping your brain develop and process information better. It is actually the body’s most abundant neurotransmitter, and it can be useful in relaying information from one part of the brain to another or sending messages throughout the body.
You likely get as much Glutamate as you need already, and there aren’t really any supplements being made for this amino acid because your body can easily get the necessary amounts. The only time you would need to supplement this amino acid is if you are deficient in protein. Generally, when that happens, your doctor will just recommend you eat more chicken, beef, eggs and pork.
The two amino acids share some similarities, but they serve very different purposes. If you are bodybuilding or dieting, you definitely want to go with Glutamine. You would generally only need more Glutamate if you have a medical condition that requires treatment.
It’s a good idea to talk to your doctor before you take any supplement, particularly if you are already being treated for some sort of medical condition. You want to be sure that the supplement you plan to use will not adversely affect you in any way.