If you haven’t heard of glutamine before, you might be interested to know that it is another supplement that can help promote muscle growth. The scientific name for glutamine is called L-Glutamine.
Glutamine is one of the 20 amino acids that aid in protein synthesis. Common sources of protein include meats, vegetables, wheat, and eggs. Basically, you can find it in meats and plants. It is also the most common naturally occurring amino acid in your body.
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Why do People Take Glutamine Supplements?
In a similar manner to protein powders, sometimes we eat a normal amount of food every day but it simply isn’t enough to really make a difference in our bodies. Protein is the primary catalyst behind muscle growth. No two bodies are exactly the same, so you and your friend or relative might have different results depending on the period of time in which you take it and what your diet and exercise routines are like.
One note we want to get out of the way is that glutamine supplements, like protein powder, are not going to give you bulletproof abs or mountains of biceps in a couple of weeks. Any supplement is simply a catalyst to jumpstart protein synthesis in your body. Ingesting supplements or powders alone isn’t going to do you any good. A balanced diet and diverse/consistent exercise on top of supplements are going to be the difference makers. Even then, don’t be surprised to see that you haven’t gained muscle mass overnight.
So without further ado, let’s get to the most popular glutamine supplements on the market:
L-Glutamine by Cellucor is one of the most popular brands of late. We imagine that it’s 4.5/5 rating on Amazon is at least partially due to its versatility as a brand. There are 14 flavors (some of which do not feature Glutamine), 10 different serving sizes, and 6 different types of supplements.
For the Glutamine powder, it supplements pre-workouts such as C4 and Alpha Amino. Combining these supplements for an intensive workout means that you’re sure to maximize the energy gained and what’s already in your body. This powder is safe and optimal to use before, during, and after workouts. We’ll explain further below, but L-Glutamine has further health benefits besides enhanced workout performance.
This particular product is gluten-free in the following flavors: Cinnamon Swirl, Vanilla, Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Marshmallow, and Strawberry.
Approximate cost per serving (72 servings)- $.25
Micro Ingredient’s premium L-Glutamine is plant-based and comes from non-GMO corns. Regardless if you’re a vegetarian, this particular brand has proven to be extremely popular. This 2.2 lb bag is pure L-Glutamine with no other additives (like flavors) or preservatives.
Since it is plant-based and does not contain additional chemicals to augment taste, it does cost quite a bit more than the average tub of glutamine. There is a cheaper option that is just over 1 lbs’s worth, but the price difference is give or take $7.
This product is also gluten-free, and you won’t have to worry about which flavors contain glutamine because there are none.
Approximate cost per serving (333 servings)- $.07
Old School Lab’s Vintage Build is a highly rated powder supplement that is actually a 3 in 1 performer. In this supplement, you are consuming BCAA’s (Branch Chain Amino Acids), creatine monohydrate, and L-Glutamine.
BCAA’s and creatine monohydrate are acids that promote energy replenishment and nourishment. Combine this with the L-Glutamine that you’re also getting with this supplement, and you’re looking at a product that delivers benefits from multiple facets. Since the powder is split into three primary acids, you won’t be getting the full effects of a powder focused on each one, but its the next best thing.
For those that are looking for pure L-Glutamine, you might want to look elsewhere for a cheaper and less diverse product. However, Vintage Build is proven to be every bit of a recovery drink as it is a muscle promoter.
Approximate cost per serving (30 servings)- $1.33
Kaged Muscle is one of the cheapest brands on our list for a tub that weighs a little less than a pound. There is a larger size of a little over a pound that is similarly low priced. Kaged is pure glutamine and each serving contains around 5g worth.
This brand’s powder is purely plant-based and GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) free, making it ideal for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. On a further note, the type of glutamine used in Kaged Muscle is referred to as fermented glutamine, which is the purest form of glutamine you can purchase.
This brand is flavorless, so you won’t be getting unnecessary chemicals that come with flavoring.
Approximate cost per serving (100 servings)- $.20
Raw Barrels glutamine is pretty similar to Kaged Muscle and comes in a 300g tub. In each of the 60 servings, here is 5g worth of plant-based, GMO-free glutamine. As usual, it is flavorless so that no other chemical will interfere with the protein synthesis in your body.
Raw Barrels also has a pill version of the supplement, but customers seemed to be happier when they use or switch to the powdered version. It dissolves easily in most drinks from water to coffee, so you won’t be noticing much difference.
Approximate cost per serving (60 servings)- $.41
Like most products on our list so far, Hard Rhino glutamine is flavorless, gluten-free, and manufactured from plant-based products. There is always the question of GMOs with dealing with plant-based glutamine, but Hard Rhino ensures that their powders are pure.
Hard Rhino has a couple of different sizes available for your choosing, with the 2.2 lb bag being the priciest. Even then, this weight is still cheaper than other brands of similar or heavier weights. You get 5g worth of glutamine per serving, and there are 200 servings in total.
Approximate cost per serving (200 servings)- $.12
A 1 lb tub of NOW Sports glutamine is pretty cheap compared to other brands and is GMO-free. This particular size is the most popular in NOW Sports Glutamine arsenal-proving a large quantity of the essential amino acid.
NOW Sports is a popular and trusted supplement brand that also manufactures a best-selling protein powder. You can view it in our buying guide below.
Approximate cost per serving (90 servings)- $.20
Like NOW Sports, Muscle Tech is a popular protein powder brand. Their venture into the glutamine market has been met with widespread acclaim from customers. The flavorless brand means no added chemicals besides the glutamine itself.
The Muscle Tech formula is constructed to work in tangent with other supplements as well. Whether it be BCAA’s, creatine, or vitamins-the Muscle Tech glutamine powder is guaranteed to help jump-start protein synthesis and muscle recovery.
Approximate cost per serving (60 servings)- $.28
Nutricost may not have the flashiest looking designs in the supplement world but it proves its worth by its happy customers. Nutricost’s glutamine is gluten-free and non-GMO, which is a testament to its purity.
Many customers have commented on Nutricost’s ability to repair digestive tracks when used in the correct amounts. We all like to talk about how much bigger we’re getting at the gym, but the real kicker is that glutamine has multiple benefits beyond exercise.
Approximate cost per serving (100 servings)- $.20
Glumatine isn’t primarily known for its muscle building capabilities. While studies have shown that people do gain muscle mass while taking glutamine-it’s not a direct contribution. To put it simply, glutamine is more known for its ability to provide you with energy and recover from soreness in muscles. We call it a supplement because it supplements your fitness rather than just food for your muscles. This inevitably leads to overall muscle growth.
So what makes glutamine so popular that there are tubs of it alongside protein powders?
- Prevents muscle from being broken down
- Muscle breakdown is common from lack of exercise or poor diet
- Replenishes internal glutamine levels that run out during exercise
- Gives you the energy necessary to conduct high-intensity workouts
- Promotes intestinal and digestive system health
- Makes you less susceptible to internal diseases and irregularities
There are a handful of other benefits that people claim to have but the ones above are the most widely known. As you can see, muscle retention and replenishment are equally as important as muscle growth.
Compared to Protein Powder
Protein is a building block of life that we can’t live without. When we take protein powder, we are supplementing what we already get from our diet and what is produced in our bodies. A body with a high metabolism burns through carbohydrates and protein in food quickly, so sometimes supplements are needed to really jump-start growth.
Like all supplements, ingesting too much is going to cause internal damage, especially to your stomach. How much is too much? It depends on the brand you buy and how much glutamine is in each scoop. This is why you’ll see many people paying close attention to the nutrition facts on glutamine tubs, probably more so than any other product on the market.
It is never ok to neglect your diet and substitute it for glutamine or any other supplement for that manner. All of the nutrients and vitamins the body needs to survive do not always occur naturally and must be gained from outside sources-primarily food.