Since both type 1 and type 2 diabetes have been associated with oxidative stress by researchers1 2, in this article I will discuss how to fight diabetes by reducing oxidative stress. While diabetes is widely considered as one condition, available research has shown that it is indeed a combination of various conditions which cause high levels of blood sugar levels.
The focus will be on supplementing glutathione, which is the major antioxidant that eliminates toxins and free radicals in the human body, to tackle diabetes. The rationale for this focus is derived from the heightened increase in scientific studies demonstrating the large role played by oxidative stress in the growth and development of both types of diabetes mellitus3 and the potential positive impact glutathione might have4.
The imbalance experienced between the production of antioxidant defenses and free radicals is termed as oxidative stress. It suggests, therefore, the reduced capability of vital body organs to eliminate toxins presented by free radicals (reactive oxygen species) and a consequent incapacity to repair the damage caused by these free radicals. While short term oxidative stress has been found to significantly reduce aging through mitohormesis5, severe oxidative stress reduces the effectiveness of such antioxidant defenses as glutathione whereas the production of free radicals and peroxides tends to increase. Oxidative stress thus contributes to the production of tissue damage in diabetes mellitus4 6.
As the levels of free radicals in the body become too high, the mechanisms of antioxidant defense are bound to decline. This may result in insulin resistance, damage of organelles and enzymes of the body cells and an increase in the peroxidation of lipids. In this way oxidative stress plays a role in the pathogenesis and development of diabetic complications7 8.
Glutathione and Oxidative Stress
As I mentioned earlier, glutathione is the primary antioxidant in the human body. This antioxidant is synthesized endogenously in the entire body and is present in all the cells with varied concentrations. The highest concentrations, however, are found in the liver. Glutathione is considered the primary antioxidant because of the roles it plays in detoxifying electrophilic xenobiotics, regulation of immune responses, deoxyribonucleotide synthesis and antioxidant defense.
As free radicals are generated in excess of the body’s natural ability to clear and neutralize them, the body suffers from oxidative stress. Free radicals are unstable oxygen molecules which can damage DNA and impair the functioning of organs such as the liver. Ideally, atoms share electrons with other atoms to form molecules consisting of stable atoms. Stable atoms are those which have equal pairs of electrons and protons.
Free radicals are formed when a molecule splits leaving an atom with an electron that is unpaired. This unstable atom then attacks other molecules in attempt to take an electron causing a chain reaction of formation of free radicals. This chain reaction disrupts the balance within living cells. Glutathione is therefore responsible for maintaining a balance in the redox state in the body which includes repairing the damage resulting from oxidative stress. Within the cells, glutathione serves to decrease oxidized forms of other antioxidants like alpha-tocopherol and ascorbate. Consequently, glutathione helps to reduce oxidative stress which is a key contributing factor in the development of complications relating to diabetes hence helping in the fight against both types of diabetes.
The Need to Supplement Glutathione
The human body’s capacity to naturally produce glutathione is reduced by 1% every year over the age of 209. Also, many people have a reduced capacity to naturally produce this antioxidant as a result of genetic mutation, modern diets, and a toxin-ridden environment10. Glutathione is also attacked directly by free radicals and other oxidative agents. These combined factors lead to an increase in the presence of toxins and free radicals in our bodies. This may result in the body being unable to produce sufficient glutathione for its protection which can lead to oxidative stress.
Furthermore glutathione in the human body is subjected to strict homeostatic control inside and outside the cells. This is to ensure the maintenance of a complex balance between the synthesis, recycling and utilization of reduced glutathione (GSH) from oxidized glutathione. The recycling of reduced glutathione is catalyzed by glutathione disulfide reductase. Reduced glutathione is conserved by the reducing power of ascorbate. This cycle tries to ensure reduced glutathione is produced as it is used up. Still, the synthesis of glutathione can be slower than its depletion. This has necessitated the supplementation of the natural production capacity of the body.
Exogenous forms of the primary antioxidant of the body exist. The various forms range in price, bioavailability and convenience. Some of these oral glutathione supplements have been shown to be borderline ineffective11 12. Nanoceutical Solutions has recently developed a nano sublingual glutathione supplement that delivers approximately 60% of each 200mg dose of I-glutathione after about 90 seconds after contact with the mucous membranes13. The supplement can be taken at home and does not require IV injections which are as expensive as they are painful. Nano Glutathione is a simple daily drop administered sublingually under the tongue.
Glutathione has been shown to provide health benefits and be supportive in relation to a large number of conditions. In order to maintain optimal glutathione levels, consider supplementing with Nano Glutathione. Click the link below to receive up to 40% on your first purchase.
- Wu G1, et al Glutathione metabolism and its implication on health. J Nutr. (2004)
- Https: //draxe.com/glutathione/#
- Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences (1970) Marian Orlowski and Alton Meister 67: 1248-1255