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The Aging Process

There is widespread evidence from human and animal studies that a glutathione deficiency in older subjects affects the aging process by shortening life span. The converse is also true. Repletion of glutathione in the body increases longevity! Various clinical studies have documented that healthy, elderly subjects have lower glutathione levels than their younger counterparts. Vegetarians, whose life span is reportedly longer than carnivorous individuals, have also been shown to have higher levels of glutathione in the body. Low glutathione levels place healthy, elderly subjects at a higher risk of disease because of their decreased ability to deal with conditions that increase toxic free radicals. Oxidative stress also occurs when the body has a decreased capacity to maintain its usual defensive and detoxifying activities where glutathione is the prime defender.

Studies in various other diseases associated with a decreased life span, like diabetes, reveal a cellular depletion of glutathione and concurrent higher levels of free radicals. Antioxidant repletion has been shown to help prevent the vascular complications of diabetes and also improve control of blood sugar. Antioxidants, by minimizing the oxidation of the plasma low density lipoproteins that carry the bad cholesterol, contribute to the prevention of atherosclerosis and development of cardiovascular diseases, including heart disease and strokes.

Finally, studies have shown that centenarians have higher levels of glutathione in their bodies than elderly individuals, a phenomenon which may be the basis for their extended life span. In one remarkable study, the lifespan of a mosquito was doubled when it was given glutathione!


Also See:

» Clinical Entities with Low Levels of Glutathione
» The Skin and Its Antioxidant Defense System

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