7 Big Reasons Your Body Needs Liposomal Glutathione for Long-term Health

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Supplement with liposomal glutathione for long-term health

If you're over 30 years old and had to choose just one supplement to take, it would be wise to consider liposomal glutathione. Glutathione is one of the best all-around supplements to keep up with the biochemical stress of being alive, and the liposomal form (or in some cases, the S-acetyl form) is the most bioavailable, as it enables your body to absorb what you take.

The reason glutathione should be a first-choice contender is because it's the body's main endogenous antioxidant. Often referred to as the "master detoxifier,” glutathione is responsible for excreting multiple metal toxins like mercury, different mold toxins pesticides, herbicides, petrochemicals and alcohol metabolites.

Your immune system depends on glutathione. When you run down on glutathione, which we all do as we age (see below), you lose the ability to effectively fight infections, oxidative stress, chronic inflammation and much more, as I'll cover here in a moment.

Glutathione Is Your Essential Nutrient

liposomal glutathione is a highly absorbable, powerful antioxidant.

Composed of three amino acids: L-glutamine, L-cysteine and L-glycine, glutathione is a sulfur-containing compound molecule and antioxidant nutrient that is made inside every cell in the human body. It's found in the highest levels in the liver, eyes, spleen, pancreas and kidneys, while used primarily in the brain and liver to capture oxidants responsible for inducing cell damage and inflammation.

Glutathione is the single most protective antioxidant produced by the body and therefore the most important as it protects cells against oxidative stress brought on by free radicals. It protects vulnerable DNA from damage, while helping to bind heavy metals, remove toxins and enhance immune function; it is also especially supportive during viral infections, as you'll see when I address the S-Acetyl form of glutathione. [1] [2]

Glutathione is used primarily in the brain and liver to capture oxidants responsible for inducing cell damage and inflammation. It is useful in supporting brain and neurological function, as well as detoxification and removal of certain heavy metals.

If brain fog, poor memory and/or concentration are symptoms you commonly experience, glutathione supplementation is well suited for you. Similarly, inflammatory conditions including arthritis and asthma respond well to glutathione. As an antioxidant, this treatment is useful for general health maintenance and disease prevention.

Glutathione has many important functions, including:

  • Making DNA, the building blocks of proteins and cells
  • Supporting immune function
  • Forming sperm cells
  • Breaking down some free radicals
  • Helping certain enzymes function
  • Regenerating vitamins C and E
  • Transporting mercury out of the brain
  • Helping the liver and gallbladder deal with fats
  • Assisting regular cell death (a process known as apoptosis)

As I wrote in our blog post about liver detoxification:

"Of these [detoxifying] nutrients, glutathione is the most important. Glutathione is so important for that it's known as the "master antioxidant". Glutathione is the most abundant antioxidant in the body and can regenerate itself in the liver; however, food sources of glutathione are poorly absorbed into the body. Although it's important to eat glutathione-rich foods, such as asparagus, avocado, spinach and broccoli, certain supplements can substantially
enhance your detoxification process."

Watch the irrepressible Founder of Quicksilver Scientific, Dr. Christopher Shade, explain in two minutes why glutathione is his flagship product.

Unfortunately, our body's ability to make glutathione declines with age. Chronic illness as well as long term toxic exposure can not only deplete stores of glutathione, but also inhibit its production. In order to correct its depletion, supplementation is necessary and can be optimized with various forms of glutathione based on your needs and preferences. I'll cover this later, but first let's go a bit deeper into why your body needs glutathione, particularly as you age.


7 Reasons You Want Glutathione

Although glutathione is the body's main antioxidant and master detoxifier, this attribution fails to capture the vast array of health conditions that glutathione may improve. Clinically, glutathione has importance in helping health conditions ranging from mental health to viral infections to heavy metal detoxification.

Here are seven substantial health benefits offered by glutathione supplementation.

1. Reduces mercury and cellular toxicity

Glutathione is necessary for cellular detoxification. The process of Phase II detoxification involves the binding of toxins with substances such as glutathione to create larger, inactive, water soluble molecules Toxins such as mercury are linked to glutathione, transported out of the cell, into the bile, and out of the body via stool. Glutathione is thus necessary to both protect the cell's delicate chemical machinery and to transport toxins out. Because glutathione is utilized for the removal and elimination of mercury and other toxins from the cell, it can get depleted in toxic settings. [3]

2. Reduces oxidative stress

Oxidative stress occurs when there's an imbalance between the production of free radicals and the body's ability to neutralize them. Rampant oxidative stress may be a precursor to multiple diseases, including diabetes, cancer, and rheumatoid arthritis. Glutathione helps stave off the impact of oxidative stress, which may thereby reduce diseases promoted by free radical damage.

An article cited in Journal of Cancer Science and Therapy indicates that glutathione deficiency leads to increased levels of oxidative stress, which might lead to cancer. It also states that elevated glutathione levels raised antioxidant levels and resistance to oxidative stress in cancer cells.

3. Improves insulin sensitivity and diabetes

Insulin resistance is when cells in your muscles, fat, and liver don't respond well to insulin and can't use glucose from your blood for energy. To make up for it, your pancreas makes more insulin. Over time, your blood sugar levels go up because there's insufficient insulin to move glucose from the blood into cells that use it for energy. This can result in the development of type 2 diabetes.

A small 2018 study showed that people with insulin resistance tend to have lower glutathione levels, particularly if they have experienced complications, such as neuropathy or retinopathy. A 2013 study backed that up.

As you'll see below, our bodies produce less glutathione as we age. Researchers at Baylor School of Medicine used a combination of animal and human studies to explore the role of glutathione in weight management and insulin resistance in older individuals. What they found was that low glutathione levels were associated with less fat burning and more fat being stored in the body. Older subjects had cysteine and glycine (two amino acids) added to their diets to increase glutathione levels, which spiked within two weeks, improving insulin resistance and fat burning.

Long-term high blood sugar is associated with reduced amounts of glutathione, leading to oxidative stress and tissue damage. A study published in Diabetes Journal found that dietary supplementation with cysteine and glycine boosted glutathione levels. It also lowered oxidative stress and damage in people with uncontrolled diabetes, despite high sugar levels.

4. Reduces cell damage in alcoholic and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease

Cell death in the liver may be exacerbated by a deficiency in antioxidants, including glutathione. This can lead to fatty liver disease in both those who misuse alcohol and those who don't. Hepatitis, alcohol abuse, and fatty liver disease all damage the cells of the liver.

A small 2017 clinical trial concludes that glutathione could help treat nonalcoholic fatty liver disease due to its antioxidant properties and potential to detoxify.

The researchers note that larger studies are needed to confirm this effect.

Glutathione has been shown to improve protein, enzyme, and bilirubin levels in the blood of individuals with alcoholic and nonalcoholic chronic fatty liver disease.

Another 2017 study found that orally administered glutathione had positive effects on people with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease following proactive lifestyle changes. In this case, glutathione was provided in supplement form in a dose of 300 milligrams per day for four months.

Way back in 1995, a study reported that glutathione was most effective when given to people with fatty liver disease intravenously in high doses. Participants in the study also showed reductions in malondialdehyde, a marker of cell damage in the liver. As you'll discover below, the liposomal form of glutathione is equally as effective as intravenous delivery.

5. Increases mobility for people with peripheral artery disease

Peripheral artery disease occurs when the peripheral arteries become clogged by plaque. It most commonly happens in the legs. In one study, participants were divided into two groups: those receiving glutathione and those receiving a placebo twice a day over a period of five days. Their mobility was then evaluated. The result was that the glutathione group experienced improved circulation, and they were able to walk pain-free for longer distances than before the glutathione was administered.

6. Reduces symptoms of Parkinson's disease

Parkinson's disease affects the central nervous system and is defined by symptoms such as tremors. It currently has no cure. A 2002 study documented intravenous glutathione's positive effects on symptoms such as tremors and rigidity. While more research is needed, this case report suggests that glutathione may help reduce symptoms and improve the quality of life of those with Parkinson's.

7. May help fight against autoimmune disease

The chronic inflammation caused by autoimmune diseases can increase oxidative stress. These diseases include rheumatoid arthritis, celiac disease and lupus. According to a 2009 study, glutathione helped reduce oxidative stress by either stimulating or reducing the body's immunological response. Autoimmune diseases attack the mitochondria in specific cells. Glutathione works to protect cell mitochondria by reducing free radicals.

Unfortunately, Glutathione Gets Depleted As We Age


Liposomal glutathione quickly stops the decline of glutathione in our body as we age.

(Credit: Salmelind.com)

As you can see from the above graph, the amount of glutathione produced by our body decreases rapidly from age 30 on. At the same time, and partly due to the diminishing protection offered by glutathione, the amount of oxidative stress we experience increases as glutathione decreases. A little after age 60, the level of oxidative stress exceeds that of glutathione.

This decline of glutathione happens naturally if it's not bolstered by supplementation, but various lifestyle factors can diminish it faster, such as:

  • Poor nutrition
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Smoking
  • Stress
  • Too little exercise or too much strenuous exercise
  • A system overrun with toxins like heavy metals and pesticides
  • Medications like Tylenol
  • Infections
  • Chronic inflammation
  • Chronic illnesses like diabetes, autoimmune conditions and infections

To help keep you off that red line in the above graph, where your glutathione levels begin to plummet after age 30, consider supplementing with liposomal glutathione.

Why Your Glutathione Must Be Liposomal Glutathione

Glutathione held within a liposome makes it highly bioavailable.

Of the four glutathione supplements offered by Prohealth Longevity, three are liposal-based. (The other is a special form of glutathione called S-Acetyl-Glutathione, which I'll address next.)

Liposomes are microscopic single to multilayer spheres made of phospholipids (the basic building blocks of cell membranes). Phospholipids encapsulate a compound, such as glutathione, in order to bypass the digestive processes that normally degrade or limit the compound's absorption.

(For more about phospholipids, read, 7 Phosphatidylcholine Benefits That Can Improve Your Long-term Health.)

Liposomes demonstrate the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier, deposit their cargo, such as glutathione, intracellularly, and enhance lymphatic circulation of therapeutic compounds. Additionally, the phospholipids that compose the liposome fuse with and feed the cell membranes. [4]

Impressively, liposomes can bring the power of intravenous therapy into a convenient oral delivery. That said, know that all liposomes are not created equally. Most liposomes on the market use low grades of phospholipids, such as raw lecithin, instead of the high-phosphatidylcholine phospholipid mixes necessary for a good liposome. Supplement manufacturers also typically use cheap shear methods resulting in large (200–600nm), poorly-absorbed particles. [5]

In order to offer the best liposomal delivery of glutathione so your body can quickly absorb it, we offer two Quicksilver glutathione products and one of our own - all three enhanced by liposomal technology.

Here's what Dr. Christopher Shay has to say about the power of liposomal delivery:

Quicksilver Scientific's Liposomal Glutathione with Sunflower Phospholipids delivers the power of intravenous therapy into a convenient oral delivery. The company's Etheric Delivery™ improves upon liposomal technology with smaller, more stable, single layer spheres made from the highest-grade ingredients available.

In addition to exceptional absorption rates, nanospheres like Quicksilver's have demonstrated the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier, deposit their cargo intracellularly and enter lymphatic circulation. Additionally, the phospholipids that compose the liposome shell feed the cell membranes. This ensures the proper function for the absorption of nutrients and the excretion of cellular waste products and toxins.

Quicksilver's Liposomal Glutathione Complex adds a potent mixture of milk thistle (helps support the liver), B vitamins (aid metabolism and energy) and other compounds to make it a master detoxifier.


Both of Quicksilver's glutathione supplements improve upon basic liposomal delivery technology with smaller, more stable, tightly distributed single-layer spheres (called unilamellar vesicles) made from the highest-grade ingredients available. These small vesicles begin absorbing as soon as they hit your mouth, so you can get high absorption before they are altered by the harsh processes in the intestines.

Finally, our third liposomal glutathione offering, ProHealth's very own and simply named Liposomal Glutathione. As with Quicksilver's glutathione products, ProHealth optimizes the size of the liposomal spheres for absorption, 50 to 400 nanometers, and uses natural non-hydrogenated sunflower, rather than lectin (which by the way is is a description of purification rather than a material identification, given that all natural phosphatidylcholine is classified as lecithin).





S-Acetyl Glutathione For Viruses and A Quick Boost

S-Acetyl-Glutathione and liposomal glutathione are the most absorbable forms of glutathione.

(Credit: Glutathionepathway.com)

The last glutathione supplement offered by ProHealth is Emothion® enhanced S-Acetyl Glutathione. I'll get to that in a minute, but first some background on this different form of glutathione.

S-Acetyl Glutathione is an acetylated form of glutathione that optimizes for absorption, bioavailability and antiviral properties, such as combatting herpes simplex type 1 (HSV-1).

This acetylated form of glutathione happens when an acetyl group attached to the sulfur atom of cysteine (an amino acid) in the glutathione molecule. You would need to wade through some chemistry to understand what an acetyl group is, but suffice to say that when it attaches to cysteine, the molecule is protected from oxidation in the digestive tract, and the objectionable smell and taste of the sulphur atom is absent.

S-Acetyl Glutathione is ideal for oral ingestion, because this acetyl group protects glutathione from breaking down in the gastrointestinal tract; once absorbed and inside the cells it is removed, thus leaving the glutathione molecule intact.

S-Acetyl-Glutathione is also ideal for viral conditions and for more intense therapy when higher doses are recommended. Not only has it been shown to remain stable in the gastrointestinal tract, but it also has a longer plasma half-life with improved ability to enter cells and raise intercellular glutathione levels more efficiently. [6] [7]

One study demonstrated the advantage of S-acetyl glutathione over glutathione (not liposomal), in increasing intracellular levels of glutathione, both in vivo (whole, living organisms) and in vitro (outside a living organism, like in a test tube or petri dish). According to this study, in cell culture, viral infection resulted in a significant decrease of intracellular glutathione levels. S-Acetyl-Glutathione efficiently and dose-dependently restored intracellular glutathione.

The conclusion was that S-acetyl-glutathione replenished the body's glutathione levels more efficiently that with regular glutathione supplementation, and thereby was the preferred choice of glutathione supplementation when an individual is in need of increasing glutathione levels quickly, and when higher doses may be desired.

The same study showed that S-acetyl-glutathione displayed antiviral properties when used in cell and animal models of herpes simplex type 1 (HSV-1) infection by inhibiting viral replication and improving survival better than plain glutathione.

ProHealth uses a unique crystalline form of S-acetyl glutathione called Emothion® that was developed to overcome the poor effectiveness of glutathione supplementation due to its poor absorption and its hydrolytic degradation in the body (destroyed in water). Emothion® has a rapid dissolution rate and, therefore, is orally well absorbed.

ProHealth's S-acetyl glutathione with Emothion absorbs as well as  liposomal glutathione

(Credit: Gnosis-bio.com/emothion)

Which Glutathione Supplement Should You Choose?

Which of our glutathione supplements you choose is, of course, up to your preference and budget, but I have a few thoughts that might help guide your selection:

  • If you have no particular health issue, so mainly wish to replenish the depleting glutathione levels in your body, consider Quicksilver's Liposomal Glutathione with Sunflower Phospholipids or ProHealth's Liposomal Glutathione.
  • If you want to focus on detoxification, consider Quicksilver's Liposomal Glutathione Complex, given that it also contains herbs and compounds that support detoxing, such as milk thistle and several B vitamins.
  • If you have a viral infection or want to get a big and quick boost of glutathione, consider ProHealth's S-Acetyl Glutathione.

Your Takeaway

Remember these three things:

  1. Your body naturally makes glutathione, but it declines as you age and eventually is of insufficient amounts to combat oxidative stress. (Check out that graph again above.)

  2. The only two types of glutathione worth taking is the liposomal and S-acetyl forms, because they both are highly absorbable, which is not the case with regular glutathione.

  3. Take Quicksilver's Liposomal Glutathione with Sunflower Phospholipids or ProHealth's Liposomal Glutathione to replenish your depleted stores of glutatione; take Quicksilver's Liposomal Glutathione Complex is your aim is to detoxify; and take ProHealth's S-Acetyl Glutathione should you have a viral infection or want a quick boost of glutathione.
Show references
  1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14624358
  2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18164447
  3. https://www.quicksilverscientific.com/blog/glutathione-master-antioxidant/
  4. https://www.quicksilverscientific.com/quicksilver-delivery-systems
  5. https://www.quicksilverscientific.com/quicksilver-delivery-systems
  6. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20335977
  7. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15617191
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