Glossary/Basic Info

What is a dietary supplement?
A dietary supplement is a product intended for ingestion that contains a “dietary ingredient” intended to add further nutritional value to (supplement) the diet. A “dietary ingredient” may be one, or any combination, of the following substances:
a vitamin
a mineral
an herb or other botanical
an amino acid
a dietary substance for use by people to supplement the diet by increasing the total dietary intake
a concentrate, metabolite, constituent, or extract

Dietary supplements may be found in many forms such as tablets, capsules, softgels, gelcaps, liquids, or powders.

Some dietary supplements can help ensure that you get an adequate dietary intake of essential nutrients; others may help you reduce your risk of disease.

Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA)

Purported, but unproven uses include liver disease, cancer prevention, atherosclerosis and its treatment, HIV and AIDS. Small studies suggest that ALA may improve blood glucose levels in patients with type 2 diabetes. ALA may be useful for treatment of diabetic or cancer chemotherapy-induced neuropathy. May provide relief for Burning Mouth Syndrome. Research is being conducted using ALA for a variety of other purposes.

Attention for Liver Disease: May interact with drugs metabolized by liver.

Safety Information: Very few side effects have been reported. They are: allergic reaction, nausea, and vomiting. Diabetics need to watch blood sugar levels. Some experts discourage use of ALA in patients with hypothyroidism and thiamine deficiency. Insufficient safety data to make recommendations for children, pregnant or nursing mothers.

Interactions: May interact with drugs metabolized by liver.

Lab Notes: May lower blood glucose and thyroid levels.

L-glutamic acid

One of twenty amino acids (molecules that join together to form proteins). L-glutamic acid may help nerve cells send and receive information from other cells. It is being studied for its ability to decrease or prevent nerve damage caused by anticancer drugs. Also called glutamic acid.


L-cysteine supports the synthesis of the highly antioxidative Glutathione and can also be stored in this chemical form. It therefore plays an important part in detoxification and the resulting protection of several tissues and organs.
According to recent research studies this does not only slow down the natural process of ageing, but also helps in preventing dementia and multiple sclerosis, because both conditions are associated with an accumulation of toxins.


Glycine retards muscle degeneration; improves glycogen storage, thus freeing up glucose for energy needs. It promotes a healthy prostate, central nervous system, and immune system. It is useful for repairing damaged tissue and promotes healing.


NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms
An antioxidant drug that may keep cancer cells from developing or reduce the risk of growth of existing cancer.

AIDS & STDs Dictionaries
Aids Glossary
see a substance which is converted within the body to cysteine, an amino acid that is a component of glutathione, a major cellular antioxidant. NAC may block the action of tumor necrosis factor.

Alpha Lipoic Acid

A substance that is being studied for its ability to protect normal cells from the side effects of chemotherapy and prevent peripheral neuropathy (numbness, tingling, burning, and weakness in the hands or feet).
Alpha-lipoic acid is made by the body and can be found in foods such as organ meats, spinach, broccoli, peas, brussel sprouts, and rice bran. It can also be made in the laboratory. Alpha-lipoic acid is a type of antioxidant and chemoprotective agent.

Grapeseed Extract

Grape Seed Extract is an extremely effective anti-oxidant, which is up to 50 times more powerful than Vitamin E and 30 times more powerful than Vitamin C when it comes to fighting health threatening “free radicals.” It prevents the oxidation of LOL, which leads to the formation of plaque or fatty deposits in the arteries; improves circulation; strengthens blood vessels and cell membranes. It reduces inflammation of varicose veins, hemorrhoids, and swelling after surgery; supports tissues containing collagen and elastin,and revitalizes aging skin; reduces the tendency for easy bruising; improves night vision and helps prevent macular degeneration of the eyes. It is very similar to pine bark extract as it contains a unique type of bioflavonoids called proanthocyanidins, which are synergistic with vitamin C, that is, they greatly enhance the activity of Vitamin C. In fact, some researchers believe that grape seed extract helps vitamin C enter cells, thus strengthening the cell membranes and protecting the cells from oxidative damage.

VITAMIN C (Ascorbic Acid)

IMPORTANCE: Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) is a major and very potent anti-oxidant. It plays a primary role in the formation of collagen, which is important for the growth and repair of body tissue cells, gums, blood vessels, bones and teeth. It protects against the harmful effects of pollution; protects against infection, and enhances the immune system. Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) helps protect against many forms of cancer by counteracting the formation of nitrosamines (cancer-causing substances). It protects against abnormal blood clotting and bruising, and may reduce the risk of cataracts. It aids in the treatment and prevention of the common cold and prevents scurvy. It reduces the effects of many allergy producing substances. It helps lower blood pressure; is vital for wound healing and strengthens the blood vessels. It reduces cholesterol and protects against heart disease. It aids in the production of “anti-stress” hormones. It is needed for healthy adrenal function; helps expel heavy metals and other toxic substances from the body.

DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to soft & bleeding gums, swollen or painful joints, slow-healing wounds & fractures, bruising, nosebleeds, tooth decay, loss of appetite, muscular weakness, skin hemorrhages, capillary weakness, anemia, impaired digestion.


L-Methionine is an essential sulfur-containing, free-form amino acid. It contributes to the synthesis of S-adenosyl-Lmethionine (SAMe), which is necessary for normal brain function, and L-cysteine, which is a component of glutathione, an important antioxidant molecule in the body. It is also a transporter of the antioxidant mineral, selenium.


The amino acid has many benefits, such as lowering the buildup of arterial deposits and the risk of cardiovascular disease. However, one of the benefits of this amino acid that is best recognized is its effect on the appearance and health of the skin.
Role of L-Proline in Collagen and other Tissues
L-Proline and Vitamin C are both critical to the synthesis of collagen. Collagen, in turn, plays a key role in skin health and appearance. Collagen is the protein found in many structural tissues in the human body, from connective tissue to muscle tissue. Collagen also is important the healing of various types of wounds.

In the skin, collagen provides support, which is what gives the skin of younger people its tight, plump appearance. As people age, existing collagen breaks down even as production of new collagen decreases. Free radicals can also damage collagen and other skin cells. As collagen decreases, skin becomes loose or wrinkled, giving the appearance of aging. Collagen implants are one of the potential solutions to this change in appearance. However, L-Proline promotes the development of natural collagen, which is a healthier and safer process. Incorporating this substance into the diet is also more affordable and accessible for most people than invasive injections are.


Threonine is an amino acid. Amino acids are the building blocks the body uses to make proteins.

Threonine is used to treat various nervous system disorders including spinal spasticity, multiple sclerosis, familial spastic paraparesis, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease).

How does it work?
Threonine is changed in the body to a chemical called glycine. Glycine works in the brain to reduce constant and unwanted muscle contractions (spasticity).


A natural protein that forms connective tissue and provides strength, resilience, and support to the skin, ligaments, tendons, bones, and other parts of the body.
Collagen is the main structural protein of the skin.

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1. Heart Health
2. Resistant to Harmful Organisms
3. Aids in Weight Loss
4. Promotes Skin Health
5. Helps with Digestive Upset
6. Reduces Irritation
7. Improved Cellular Health
8. May Help Fight Cancer
9. Anti-Aging Effects
10. Energy Boost
11. Better Sex
12. Improves Mental Function
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Glutathione is a molecule consisting of 3 amino acids (L-glutamic, L-cystine, Glycine) that is produced in the liver. In addition to assuring the smooth functioning of metabolic processes, it has a protective role in the cells of humans and of most animal and plant. Glutathione is an important antioxidant, meaning that it can bind to toxic substances and lead to their excretion from the body through urine or bile.