Glutathione is a protein composed of three amino acids: glutamic acid, cysteine and glycine. It is one of the most important components of the antioxidant defense system.
Glutathione does most of its work primarily in the liver, but it can also be found in other tissues of the body. In addition to fighting free radicals, it also helps maintain the function of several important biomolecules in a chemical reaction called "reduction" (instead of monitoring "oxidation"). In addition, glutathione can convert toxins such as pesticides, lead, and dry cleaning solvents that enter the body so that they can be eliminated from the body more easily.
The main physiological functions of glutathione GSH are scavenging free radicals, anti-oxidation, and anti-aging. Many free radicals produced by metabolism in the body can damage cell membranes, invade life macromolecules, promote body aging, and induce tumors or atherosclerosis. GSH can eliminate free radicals and play a strong protective role. Because the structure of glutathione GSH contains an active sulfhydryl-SH that is easy to be oxidized and dehydrogenated, this specific structure makes it the main free radical scavenger in the body. Glutathione GSH not only eliminates free radicals in the human body, but also improves human immunity. It can not only improve the function of blood cells to produce protective substances (protective substances refer to substances that can protect the body from infection), but also reduce the total content of inflammatory substances in the body, which are produced by cells. Glutathione GSH has a greater effect on retarded cells in the elderly than in young people. For this reason, for the aging immune system, glutathione GSH will maintain it and make it healthy.
Excessive free radicals produced by the body's metabolism can damage biofilms, invade life macromolecules, accelerate body aging, and induce tumors or atherosclerosis. Glutathione plays an important role in the biochemical defense system of the human body and has various physiological functions. Its main physiological function is to remove free radicals in the human body, and as an important antioxidant in the body, it protects the sulfhydryl groups in many proteins and enzymes. The structure of GSH contains an active mercapto-SH, which is easy to be oxidized and dehydrogenated. This specific structure makes it the main free radical scavenger in the body. For example, when a small amount of H2O2 is generated in the cell, GSH will reduce H2O2 to H2O under the action of glutathione peroxidase, and it will be oxidized to GSSG. Under the action of glutathione reductase in the liver and red blood cells, GSH will accept H and reduce it to GSH, so that the scavenging reaction of free radicals in the body can continue.
Glutathione can also protect hemoglobin from hydrogen peroxide oxidation, free radicals and other oxidations so that it can continue to function normally to transport oxygen. Part of the hemoglobin in red blood cells is oxidized to ferric iron under the action of oxidants such as hydrogen peroxide, which makes the hemoglobin change into methemoglobin, thus losing its oxygen-carrying capacity. Reduced glutathione can directly combine with oxidants such as hydrogen peroxide to generate water and oxidized glutathione, and can also reduce methemoglobin to hemoglobin. There is a lot of glutathione in human red blood cells, which is of great significance for protecting the sulfhydryl groups of proteins on red blood cell membranes in a reduced state and preventing hemolysis.