Glutathione deficiency is virtually universal in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome patients. While the exact cause is still not fully understood, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) has been linked to abnormalities found in both hormonal and cellular immunity.
Tests consistently indicate that those diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) have an impaired lymphocyte (T-cell) response. Early research has shown the ability of lymphocytes to react to an immune challenge is directly related to their glutathione status (GSH) (Medical Hypothesis, 1999). Glutathione is arguably the most important water-soluble antioxidant found in the body. Glutathione is a tripeptide made up of the amino acids L-cysteine, L-glutamine and glycine. It is believed that the constant use of glutathione by lymphocytes may lead to cellular glutathione depletion and, subsequently, immune failure.
Dr. Bounous, from the Department of Surgery at McGill University, has put forward the hypotheses that “the competition for glutathione (GSH) precursors over time may lead to muscle fatigue (myalgia) and other symptoms associated with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.” He further states, “Because glutathione is also essential to aerobic muscular contractions, an undesirable competition for glutathione precursors between the immune and muscular systems may develop.”
Whey protein is the most effective way to deliver precursors for glutathione (GSH) synthesis. It has also been shown to raise glutathione levels in humans and animals. It has been theorized that whey may be especially effective for people suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CSF).