In my previous article, I introduced the amazing capacities of the well-known antioxidant N-acetylcysteine (NAC). NAC is most well-known for its use in conventional medicine for the treatment of acetaminophen (Tylenol) overdose. It has been shown to restore levels of the “master” antioxidant, glutathione (GSH), which prevents the damage that can result from excess oxidative stress in the body and on the liver. Yet, NAC is not just an esteemed cellular defender and the precursor to glorious GSH, which itself has impressive roles in health and disease prevention.
NAC has been studied for a broad range of benefits which include:
- immune and antiviral support
- treating respiratory disorders due to its mucolytic and anti-inflammatory effects
- modulating detoxification pathways
- assisting with infertility in certain reproductive diagnoses (i.e., PCOS)
- lowering homocysteine and other cardiovascular risk markers
- decreasing symptoms of psychiatric disorders
- helping with alleviating addictive behaviors
- and more (source, source, source, source, source)
In a 2009 review in American Family Physician, which rated evidence and assessed biases in human clinical trials, the authors stated the following regarding NAC’s wide range of uses:
N-acetylcysteine is the acetylated variant of the amino acid L-cysteine and is widely used as the specific antidote for acetaminophen overdose. Other applications for N-acetylcysteine supplementation supported by scientific evidence include prevention of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease exacerbation, prevention of contrast-induced kidney damage during imaging procedures, attenuation of illness from the influenza virus when started before infection, treatment of pulmonary fibrosis, and treatment of infertility in patients with clomiphene-resistant polycystic ovary syndrome. Preliminary studies suggest that N-acetylcysteine may also have a role as a cancer chemopreventive, an adjunct in the eradication of Helicobacter pylori, and prophylaxis of gentamicin-induced hearing loss in patients on renal dialysis. (Click here for the full text article.)
What has recently caught my attention with this popular supplement is its use for mental health issues. In my latest blog, I finish up with the ins-and-outs of NAC.
Learn more on how this popular antioxidant can support the brain and the many factors related to optimizing psychological health here.
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This material is for information purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or prescribe for any illness. You should check with your doctor regarding implementing any new strategies into your wellness regime. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. (Affiliation link.)
Disclaimer: This information is applicable ONLY for therapeutic quality essential oils. This information DOES NOT apply to essential oils that have not been tested for purity and standardized constituents. There is no quality control in the United States, and oils labeled as “100% pure” need only to contain 5% of the actual oil. The rest of the bottle can be filled with fillers and sometimes toxic ingredients that can irritate the skin. The studies are not based solely on a specific brand of an essential oil, unless stated. Please read the full study for more information.