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Trendy Nutrients A-Z

Got anxiety? This amino acid could help


If you have anxiety or low mood, the amino acid glutamine could help. It’s also great for muscle aches and pains after exercise – no wonder it’s one of our Trendy Nutrients A – Z series

Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid (a building block for proteins) in the body,’ says Healthista’s nutritional director Rick Hay. ‘It’s popular in the sports world because it helps with muscle recovery.

‘During muscle recovery, one of glutamine’s main roles is moving nitrogen atoms in the body. In order to build muscle, you need to maintain a positive nitrogen balance. After an intense workout, moving nitrogen to your damaged muscles leads to tissue repair. Glutamine can also help with aches, pains and cramping.

‘In addition, glutamine can reduce anxiety as it helps lift mood through the neurotransmitters in the brain. Since it lowers anxiety, glutamine can help improve sleep.

‘There’s also a strong link between glutamine and better gut health, since there’s a lot of research showing that it can help with digestive function.

‘You can get glutamine through your diet from animal protein or plant-based proteins, such as beans and spinach.

Looking for a protein Powder that contains glutamine? Try a scoop of the Healthista ‘Lean Whey Diet’ protein powder or our ‘Lean Vegan Diet’ protein powder  in water or your choice of milk after exercise.

Glutamine comes in powder or tablet form and can be taken after sport or before meals for digestive reasons, or before bed if you are feeling anxious. Try Biocare’s Enteroguard £42.65 from Healthista Shop.


Rick Hay is an Anti-Ageing and Fitness Nutritionist with many years clinical experience in nutrition, naturopathy, botanical medicine and iridology. He specializes in obesity treatment and weight management. He writes a regular Natural Health and Fitness Blog for Healthista. Find out more at Follow Rick on Twitter @rickhayuk


rick hay anti ageing fitness plan

Rick Hays book the Anti Ageing Food and Fitness Plan is available to buy on Amazon. 


More from Rick Hay:

Anti Ageing Fitness Plan: Week 6

5 foods to keep your body young

10 rules of weight loss

5 foods to eat when you’re frantic

10 pre-exercise snacks that WON’T ruin your diet

FOOD is seven a day the new five a day?

HOW TO Choose a protein powder

What to eat if you exercise

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