• #5-2. Glutathione and Lipoic Acid


    The medical and public interest in glutathione has increased recently thanks to the popularity of the white jade injection. To describe glutathione’s whitening action, it inhibits tyrosinase, an enzyme involved in synthesis of eumelanin and converts it into pheomelanin which is colorless. However, this action is not strong enough to be emphasized as the main effect of the white jade injection.

    Recently, glutathione’s neurological benefit is receiving much attention. In particular, its effects in ischemic brain disease, memory impairment, and Parkinson’s disease, etc. are being researched. In 2014, Dr. Atsuo Yanagisawa, President of International Orthomolecular Medicine Society and Japan’s Parenteral Therapy Society published a book titled Glutathione Cures Parkinson’s Disease. In the same year, a Korean translation of the book was published by Korean Medical Society for Intravenous Nutrition Therapy. And this lead to an increased interest in the benefits of glutathione on brain functions.

       We have so far discussed primary benefits of glutathione but there are many other beneficial effects(Table 1).


    1. Wide-ranging antioxidant actions

      ● Converts H₂O₂ into H₂O, reduces oxidized vitamin C

      ● Benefits on the brain and nervous system, liver and skin, etc.

    2. Wide-ranging detoxifying effect

      ● Involved in Phase II conjugation

      ● Counters harmful effects of carbon monoxide, heavy metal, organic solvent, and radiation exposures, etc.

    3. Treats and prevents oxidative nerve damage

      ● Treats peripheral neuropathy caused by anti-cancer medication

      ● Benefits in Parkinson’s disease

    4. Inhibits hyperpigmentation(whitening effect)

      ●  Inhibits generation of eumelanin and reduces it into pheomelanin.

    5. Strengthens red blood cells and prevents anemia

      ● Promotes iron absorption and hematogenous functions

      ● Prevents hemolysis of red blood cells and helps maintain red blood cell functions

    6. Prevents progression of cataract

      ● Inhibits progression of cataract by protection the unstable –SH protein in the lens

      ● Promotes treatment of cornea and retina diseases.

    Table 1. Various positive effects of glutathione.


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       Generally, glutathione is available in the 600mg vial but I prefer using 2 vials(1,200mg) per treatment. The 1,200mg vial has recently become available. In general, 1V(600mg) – 3V(1,800mg) are diluted in 60-100ml saline solution for shot or drip IV.

       It is important to avoid adding amino acid ingredients like glutathione to amino acid solutions. Interaction between glutathione and amino acid in the solution may remove the beneficial effects of glutathione. As glutathione is available in the powder form and tends to oxidize quickly once it is dissolved in the base solution, it is very important to immediately begin IV administration. Do not wait longer than 15 minutes after dissolution.

       As glutathione oxidizes much more quickly and is more potent than vitamin C, 10-20g glutathione can be combined with megadose vitamin C in antioxidant IVNT for the purpose of fatigue relief or immune support. However, I recommend not combining glutathione to vitamin C therapy in cancer. It can be used without a problem on days when vitamin C therapy is not given.

       Large doses are required in patients with Parkinson’s disease. Twice weekly administration of five vials(3,000mg) to seven vials(4,200mg) should be continued for 2-3 months. Therefore, it is important to clearly communicate the financial burden to patients before starting the treatment. For whitening, very frequent treatments such as 2-3 treatments per week should be continued long-term for any effects to be seen. Patients should be clearly informed of these aspects of the treatment.


    -To be continued-

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