Methionine is amino acid, that supports a series of processes taking place in the body. It is responsible for the growth and renewal of body tissues and its main sources is food. Methionine is not synthesized directly in the body, therefore keeping its supply at the optimal level is very important.
Methionine – what is this?
Methionine acts as one of the basic building blocks of protein that has been isolated from casein in 1921 by the Amercian biochemist – John Howard Mueller. The precious amino acid belongs to the group of the so-called protein essential amino acids that must be supplied to the body from the outside.
Methionine comes in two natural forms L-methionine and D-methonine. Both isomers have the same chemical composition. The configuration of the molecules is different. Podobnie jak inne aminokwasy metionina zawiera centralny atom węgla z czterema odchodzącymi od niego grupami – grupą karboksylową (COOH), aminową (NH2), atomem wodoru (H) i łańcuchem bocznym R (C3SH7 dla metioniny). D-metionina i L-metionina różnią się trójwymiarową strukturą utworzoną przez grupy wokół atomu węgla.
W organizmie człowieka metionina uczestniczy w wielu przemianach biochemicznych. Takes part in the synthesis of lecithin, an organic compound that occurs in cell membranes. As a result of chemical reactions, mehionine is transformed into homocysteine, which undergoes further changes: back in methonine or in cystein. Homocysteine has negative influence on the functioning of the body and has an inhibitory effect on the main components of the vessels, ie collagen, elastin and proteoglycans.
The aforementioned cycle of metabolism of methionine, homocysteine and cysteine is called the methylation cycle. Its effect is the formation of glutathione – very strong antioxidant, which protects the body's cells against free radicals, as well as the formation of SAMe – S-adenosylomethionine a derivative of adenosine and methionine, which plays a very important role in the body – from supporting the immune system to assisting in the production of neurotransmitters to overall well-being.
Properties of methionine
Methonine is one of the nine essential amino acids. Its action is very versatile and involves many different organs. Methionine supports growth and renewal of body tissues. Its can improve the color and elasticity of the skin of hair and nails by supporting the synthesis of keratin.
Moreover, methionine is strong antioxidanti and can protect the body from damage caused by ionizing radiation. It can work by detoxifying harmful substances in the body, such as heavy metals such as lead and mercury. Methionine can also protect the liver against paracetamol poisoning and prevent the accumulation of fat in the liver (it is a lipotropic agent). This versatile amino acid can aid in the treatment of osteoporosis and alleviate fatigue in cancer patients.
Methionine – sources
Methionine is in meat products (e.g. in pork and lamb), fish (e.g. in tuna or salmon), in shrimps, eggs and dairy products. Smaller amounts of methionine can be found in plant foods, e.g. in Brazil nuts, sesame seeds, soybeans, tofu, beans, peas, lentils, wheat germ and spirulina.
Methionine supports body's metabolism and facilitates its detoxification. Sulfur contained in methionine acts as an antioxidant that protects cells against the negative effects of free radicals. insufficient amount of sulfur in body can lead to joint problems, tissue damage, and also impede wound healing.
Featured products with methionine
Action of methionine
The sulfur in methionine provides a number of health benefits that can be gained from regular supplementation of this amino acid. The main advantages of taking methionine are:
- Nourish skin, nails and hair
- Fighting acne
- Strengthening articular cartilage
- Relief of rheumatic pains
- Protecting cells from contamination
- Support for the detoxification process
- Slowing down the aging proces
- Better digestibility of other nutrients, e.g. selenium i zinc
- Support for the excretion of heavy metals from the body
- Reduction of fatty liver
- Lowering cholesterol by increasing the production of lecithin by the liver.
Methionine in bodybuilding
Methionine participates in the process of translation, i.e. protein biosynthesis. It is an N-terminal universal amino acid in growing peptide chains, meaning it is at the end of growing protein molecules.Methionine deficiency can therefore disrupt protein synthesis, which in turn may contribute to weaker regeneration after training and slower muscle growth.
Why is it worth monitoring methionine levels?
After converting methionine to homocysteine, the body uses other compounds to convert it back to methionine (vitamin B12 and folic acid) or in cysteine (vitamin B6). If the body lacks folic acid and vitamins B6 and B12, elevated levels of homocysteine may persist for a long time, which may result in the development of coronary artery disease, thrombosis, atherosclerosis or ischemic heart disease. Vegans vegetarians, the elderly, people suffering from diseases of the digestive tract and kidneys are primarily at risk of deficiencies of B vitamins.
Too low levels of methionine in the body may cause deterioration of the skin condition, brittle hair and nails, and a bad mood. Moreover, by increasing the circulation of cholesterol in the blood and a greater tendency of lipids to peroxidation, it may contribute to the development of atherosclerosis People who give up animal products in their daily diet are primarily at risk of methionine deficiency. With a plant-based diet, maintaining the correct level of methionine is very difficult.
Methionine – dosage
Methionine is very rarely found as a separate supplement. Usually it is one of the ingredients in preparations with a rich composition. In fact, methionine is found in many protein supplements and in amino acid complexes. The body's demand for methionine is 20 mg per kilogram of body weight. To experience the benefits of taking methionine, regularity is very important - methionine needs to be taken over several months. If methionine is to help fight acne, improve the condition of the skin and nails, it is necessary to take it for at least six months.
Methionine – side effects
Taking dietary supplements containing only a single amino acid may lead to a negative nitrogen balance, which may directly adversely affect the body's metabolism, and also hinder the functioning of the kidneys. Therefore, taking single amino acids over a long period of time is not recommended.
Additionally, methionine can cause the following side effects: nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drowsiness, low blood pressure, irritability. It can also worsen liver problems in some people. Methionine supplementation is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women, as well as for people suffering from bipolar disorder.