Amino Acids

Methionine Benefits: Protects the Liver


Methionine is an essential amino acid. A sulphur-containing amino acid, it is required in the body for making nucleic acid and collagen, and protein synthesis. The body can make cysteine, another amino acid, from methionine but not vice versa. It can also make choline, a vitamin of the B complex group, in the body with the aid of vitamin B12 and folacin, provided the diet is high in protein. It acts as an antioxidant, and as such, removes harmful free radicals from the body.

Recommended Daily Allowance - Methionine
Men 10 mg
Women 10 mg
Children 22 mg
Infants 45 mg

Methionine Benefits - Functions in the Body

Methionine Benefits

Of all the amino acids, methionine is of key importance for the health of the liver. It protects the liver from fatty degeneration. The cysteine that it forms prevents the destruction of the liver cells. This amino acid helps dissolve cholesterol and assimilates fat. It is required by the pancreas, lymph nodes, and the spleen, and is essential for the synthesis of haemoglobin. It is necessary for the maintenance of normal body weight and also helps to maintain the proper nitrogen balance in the body. Studies show that methionine and choline prevent tumour formation.

Methionine is considered to be one of the body's most powerful detoxifying agents. It detoxifies histamine when levels of the latter are high in schizophrenic patients.

The therapeutic dosage of methionine varies from 200 mg-1000 mg daily. This amino acid has also been found valuable in cases of high blood cholesterol, as it brings down the blood cholesterol levels.

Methionine Food Sources

Methionine Food Sources

Rich sources of methionine are whole grains. It is also found in meat and poultry, and milk and milk products. Leafy vegetables, peaches and grapes also contain methionine.

Methionine Deficiency Symptoms

Methionine Deficiency Symptoms

The deficiency of methionine can ultimately lead to chronic rheumatic fever in children, hardening of the liver(cirrhosis), and nephritis of the kidneys. According to the nutritional expert, Adelle Davis, deficiency of methionine can be the cause of choline deficiency, as it can lead to retention of fat in the liver.

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