Glutamine Review

April 22nd, 2008 by Paul Johnson

You may have stumbled on other Glutamine reviews at other sites and many bodybuilders raving how well glutamine preserved their muscles during cutting. This article is going to be different than most, I'm going to tell you something that I've known all along:




You may wonder how I could be bold enough to flat out say all the supplement companies and people advocating it could be wrong after all these years. Let's first look at some Glutamine studies to see why I say this.

Glutamine research studies

J Strength Cond Res 17(3):425-438, 2003 published a study of 29 lifters on a strength training program. They were in 3 groups, creatine only, placebo, and glutamine and creatine. Both creatine groups gained muscle more than placebo, however no difference between the non-glutamine and the glutamine creatine combo. OK, but that is one study, why should we believe only one study? The same group actually did a seperate study, this time with ribose, glutamine, and effervescent creatine. Once again, no differences in muscle gains between the glutamine groups.

Still not convinced by these two studies?

I found a study done way back in 2001 published by Eur J Appl Physiol 86:142-149, 2001. I don't know why no one knew about this study until recently, but it would have probably changed some peoples minds about Glutamine a long time ago. The study had 31 volunteers weight train for 6 weeks. There was no differences between those who supplemented glutamine (.4 grams per lb of bodyweight) and those who took placebo (maltodextrin). So we now have 3 studies showing that glutamine has absolutely nothing to do with muscle gains.

Glutamine study during dieting

Some of you may be pointing out the fact, that glutamine has usually been only recommended for bodybuilders who are dieting, to preserve their muscle. Well, I found a study that proves that glutamine doesn't even help muscle preservation during dieting either! Another study in 2003 Published in the Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2003) 2, 163-168 had 18 athletes for 12 days take glutamine at 0.16 g/ lb per bodyweight, while they were cutting. They saw absolutely no difference in muscle preservation between the groups.

The research overwhelmingly shows that glutamine is not good for bulking or cutting, despite almost every website and bodybuilder giving it a positive review for the last decade. I personally tried glutamine years ago during cutting and it never helped me maintain any extra muscle. I felt the science supporting glutamine was always weak anyways, bodybuilders were already on high protein diets, so taking extra glutamine isn't likely to help much no matter how hard you try to spin it.

  1. Pete on September 10th, 2011

    quoting the HGH increase colomn to the left.

    The amino acid Glutamine, commonly taken by bodybuilders for other reasons has been shown to increase growth hormone levels in blood by a large percentage.

    Hmmmm. I would say it works.