Pyroglutamate (or Pyroglutamic acid) is an intermediate in the glutathione metabolism and a marker of glutathione deficiency.
Pyroglutamate is a step in the production/recycling of glutathione. Glutathione is one of the most potent anti-oxidants in the human body. It is especially important in getting rid of toxins, including the harmful metabolites of estrogen detoxification 4-OH-E1 and 4-OH-E2.
In healthy individuals, a very modest amount of Pyroglutamate is spilled in the urine.
If there is little glutathione available to be recycled, pyroglutamate will be low. Low values may indicate glutathione deficiency due to oxidative stress or chemical exposure. Supplementation with reduced glutathione, N-acetyl L-cysteine, lipoic acid, and vitamin C (buffered) can raise glutathione levels. Selenium is essential to the antioxidant activity of glutathione; usually, adequate selenium can be obtained from a quality multivitamin.
If the body cannot convert pyroglutamate forward, it will show up elevated in the urine. Pyroglutamate elevation indicates the body is using up glutathione to keep from losing amino acids. Supplementation with various amino acids, especially methionine and glycine, can help rebuild total body glutathione.
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