Glutamic acid (glutamate) is a non-essential amino acid used by the body to build proteins. It is the most common stimulating neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, increasing the firing of neurons in the central nervous system. This amino acid is important in the metabolism of sugars and fats, and aids in transportation of potassium across the blood brain barrier. Glutamic acid is considered to be nature's ‘brain food’ and improves mental capacity.
Glutamic acid helps speed healing, gives a ‘lift’ from fatigue, and helps control alcoholism, schizophrenia and sugar cravings. Under normal circumstances, humans are able to meet bodily glutamate requirements either from the diet, or by making it from precursor molecules. It is found naturally in high-protein foods, such as meat, fish, eggs and dairy products. Some protein-rich plant foods also supply glutamic acid.
Glutamic acid may have beneficial effects on the heart muscle in people with heart disease. Intravenous injections of glutamic acid (as monosodium glutamate) have been shown to increase exercise tolerance and heart function in people with stable angina.
The fluid produced by the prostate gland contains significant amounts of glutamic acid, so it may play a role in normal function of the prostate. In one study, symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) were improved in a group of men taking glutamic acid in combination with the amino acids alanine and glycine.
Glutamic acid may be useful in treating the following;
Personality disorders and childhood behavioural disorders