Posted on Aug 24, 2022, 5 p.m.
Article courtesy of Dr. Joel Kahn, MD, who is a Clinical Professor of Medicine at Wayne State University School of Medicine, one of the world's top cardiologists, best-selling author, lecturer, and a leading expert in plant-based nutrition and holistic care.
The goal of slowing and reversing aging, particularly in the elderly, is an important and elusive goal. However, the science of understanding and studying healthy aging is rapidly expanding. Some of the pathways for aging that have gotten a lot of attention include elevated oxidative stress (OxS) and mitochondrial dysfunction. Improving/reversing these defects in older adults (OA) is challenging.
In prior studies a deficiency of the intracellular antioxidant glutathione (GSH) could play a role and supplementing with GlyNAC (combination of glycine and N-acetylcysteine [NAC]) has improved GSH deficiency, OxS, mitochondrial fatty-acid oxidation (MFO), and insulin resistance (IR). A placebo-controlled randomized clinical trial was recently reported in older adults (OA).
Twenty-four OA and 12 young adults (YA) were studied. The OA were randomized to receive either the simple supplemental combination of Glycine and NAC known as GlyNAC (N = 12) or placebo (N = 12) for 16 weeks; YA (N = 12) received GlyNAC for 2 weeks. Participants were studied before, after 2 weeks, and after 16 weeks of supplementation to assess GSH concentrations, OxS, MFO, molecular regulators of energy metabolism, inflammation, endothelial function, IR, aging hallmarks, gait speed, muscle strength, 6-minute walk test, body composition, and blood pressure.
Compared to YA, OA had GSH deficiency, OxS, mitochondrial dysfunction (with defective molecular regulation), inflammation, endothelial dysfunction, IR, multiple aging hallmarks, impaired physical function, increased waist circumference, and systolic blood pressure. GlyNAC (and not placebo) supplementation in OA improved/corrected these defects.
Study Conclusion and Implications
GlyNAC supplementation in OA for 16 weeks was safe and well-tolerated. By combining the benefits of glycine, NAC and GSH, GlyNAC is an effective nutritional supplement that improves and reverses multiple age-associated abnormalities to promote health in aging humans. Although there is no capsule available that has both Glycine and NAC in one pill, it is easy to source them separately and they are both safe as well as inexpensive. Glycine is an amino acid that also supports healthy sleep so it is widely available for that use and NAC is widely used for immune and detoxification support. I have added the combination to some of my elderly patients to support optimal agility, balance, muscle strength, and overall functioning, all benefits reported by this research group in prior scientific papers.
About the author: At his core, Dr. Joel Kahn believes that plant-based nutrition is the most powerful source of preventative medicine on the planet. Having practiced traditional cardiology since 1983, it was only after his own commitment to a plant-based vegan diet that he truly began to delve into the realm of non-traditional diagnostic tools, prevention tactics, and nutrition-based recovery protocols.
As with anything you read on the internet, this article should not be construed as medical advice; please talk to your doctor or primary care provider before changing your wellness routine.
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