Like adults, sufficient amount of glutamine are found in a child’s body which helps stimulate cell growth and function. It is also needed for digestion and normal brain functioning. Since the body produces enough glutamine, glutamine supplements should not be given to children not unless in special circumstances and be sure it is administered under the supervision of a professional medical practitioner. There is then a need to discover more facts about L-glutamine and kids.
L-Glutamine Sources for Children
In addition to the normally produced glutamine in the body, children can also get glutamine from animal sources like pork, beef, chicken, turkey, eggs and dairy products. If they eat green leafy vegetables, glutamine can be taken from wheat germ, oats, parsley, spinach and cabbage.
In some cases that a child’s body need additional glutamine, he can have glutamine supplement but under the supervision of a physician. A glutamine supplement can be purchased as a part of a protein supplement or can be bought alone as a supplement. It comes in the form of tablet, powder or liquid. According to the University of Maryland, Medical Center, the supplement should be taken together with cold or room temperature foods and liquid because hot temperature can destroy glutamine.
L-Glutamine for Children’s Diarrhea
Glutamine may lessen the period and severity of a child’s diarrhea. This is because it contributes to the normal functioning of a child’s immune system. It also protects the gastrointestinal tract lining or the mucosa. As a proof, you can read the study which was published in the “Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition,” in its May 2004 issue. The researchers said that the duration of acute diarrhea among the kids treated with glutamine in a period of 7 days was shorter than those kids in the placebo group.
L-Glutamine for Children’s Cancer
Researchers also conducted a study among kids whose age is between 1 to 17 years old and received glutamine while having chemotherapy treatment for solid tumors. They found out that these children have some improvements in their immune system. This study has been published in the “Pediatric Hematology and Oncology,” June 2006. In addition, the need of antibiotics medication was also reduced. The University of Maryland, Medical Center states that patients who are diagnosed with cancer have inadequate amounts of glutamine.
Other Benefits Kids May Get from L-Glutamine
Too much stress and some medical conditions like infections, injuries and surgery is known to lower glutamine levels. According to the Medical Center of the University of Maryland, some studies have proven that L-glutamine supplementation can help heal severe injuries and inflammatory bowel disease. It also enhances weight gain and helps the intestines absorb nutrients better among HIV and AIDS patients. But studies on the effects of L-glutamine for kids are still not enough. It is necessary to evaluate first the child’s condition by a doctor to determine whether the child needs L-glutamine supplementation.
Dosage of L-Glutamine for Children
Children whose age is 10 years old and above can have the standard adult dose which is 500-1,500 mg a day. This dosage should be divided into at least 3 doses a day to minimize side effects and discomforts among children. According to the University of Maryland, Medical Center, parents should ask their doctor for the dosage of L-glutamine for kids who are below 10 years old.
Although the bond between L-glutamine and kids is good as presented above, there are still side effects to discover. Your kids may experience constipation, cough, diarrhea, aches and pain, skin rash and rectal bleeding with the supplementation. Consult your pediatrician at once if these symptoms become persistent and severe.