N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine (NAC) from Natural Factors is a free form amino acid and a vital part of the body's antioxidant defence system. It is needed for the production of glutathione, a key antioxidant involved in many physiological processes, such as fighting oxidative stress, maintaining a healthy immune system, repairing tissues, cellular detoxification, and supporting overall health.
NAC supplementation has been clinically shown to increase the body's antioxidant capacity and help reduce the severity and frequency of influenza-like symptoms in adults over 65. NAC is also the most stable and readily absorbed form of cysteine.
Cysteine as a free form amino acid is one step closer to producing glutathione than when cysteine is consumed as part of a complete protein from food. Oral supplementation with NAC also increases glutathione levels more effectively than supplementing with glutathione itself. This is because glutathione breaks down in the gastrointestinal tract whereas NAC does not. It passes into the bloodstream intact.
The 600 mg dosage is supported by clinical research, and is the maximum dosage permitted by Health Canada. This is an ideal nutritional supplement for adults who would like to improve their immune system health. NAC is an effective option for anyone with high levels of oxidative stress or depleted glutathione stores.
How it works
NAC is derived from the amino acid cysteine. This amino acid is used by the body in the formation of glutathione, one of the key antioxidant and detoxifying compounds. Exposure to free radicals or toxins depletes the concentration of glutathione in our cells. Glutathione binds directly to many fat-soluble toxins such as heavy metals, solvents, and pesticides, transforming them into a water-soluble form for more efficient excretion via the kidneys. NAC helps replenish glutathione stores when they become depleted due to environmental exposure, physical stress, or disease.
Glutathione is especially important in protecting our lungs and airway passages as well as the liver and white blood cells. NAC also helps reduce inflammation by inhibiting the production of inflammatory cytokines, and supports the activity of nitric oxide to help dilate blood vessels.
In addition to its effects as an antioxidant, NAC has an extensive history of use as a mucolytic in the treatment of acute and chronic lung conditions such as emphysema, bronchitis, chronic asthma, and cystic fibrosis. It directly splits the sulphur linkages of mucoproteins, thereby reducing viscosity of bronchial and lung secretions. As a result it improves bronchial and lung function, reduces coughing, and improves oxygen saturation in the blood.