Glutathione is considered to be a miraculous skin whitening agent. So today I thought that I will write a detailed blog on glutathione. We will discuss what is glutathione and how is it effective in these skin whitening. We will also discuss the side effects associated with glutathione. The little bit we will discuss the cost of glutathione. So the first question that comes to my mind when I think of glutathione is what is glutathione. So basically it is a peptide that is made from a combination of three amino acids. Now, how does it work? So it has got three actions that it does to cause the skin lightening. So first of all, as you all know it acts as a very potent antioxidant it quenches the free radicals formed in our body, and thereby it reduces the aging of your skin. Before we start discussing the whitening effect of the glutathione that first discusses how the pigment in our skin is produced. The pigment’s main pigment which is responsible for our skin color is melanin. There are two forms of melanin: eumelanin and pheomelanin. These two pigments occur in different proportions to give us a different color of the Skin. So if somebody is having more pheomelanin than the skin color will be lighter. And if the person is having more eumelanin, then the skin color will be a little darker
. So what glutathione does is it reduces the formation of melanin pigment by inhibiting the most important enzyme in the pathway. Glutathione also causes the conversion of eumelanin to pheomelanin. Thereby causing lightning of the skin. Coming to the sources of glutathione. Our body produces glutathione naturally our body has a most potent tax antioxidant in the form of glutathione which helps us in winching the free radicals. Also, it can be taken in the diet from our different dietary sources, for example, fruits, and vegetables. The dietary source of glutathione can become important because with age the natural body source of glutathione depletes. So to replenish and to make up for the loss of glutathione these dietary sources become very important. Now, let’s discuss the Journey of glutathione as a skin-lightening agent. Glutathione is a very old drug it is being used as an FDA-approved agent for conditions, like chemotherapy and chronic liver disease, and Alzheimer’s disease. But for skin lightening its use has started very recently.
It has been seen that patients with Alzheimer’s or chronic liver disease. They’ve been taking this drug for quite a long period so the researchers also observed that these patients also had the skin whitening as a side effect of taking glutathione. So from there, we started the research on glutathione as a skin whitening agent. So now let’s discuss how effective is glutathione as a skin whitening agent. Skin color in humans is divided into six grades on the Fitzpatrick scale. The grades are from 1 to 6. So grade 1 being the lightest and grade 6 being the darkest. Indian skin color usually you know falls between Grade 3 and grade 4. So glutathione as I’ve already told you glutathione is not an FDA approved skin whitening agent. The skin whitening that it causes will give you a difference of one to do shades, but it will not change your skin color from one grade on the Fitzpatrick scale to the other.
When we talk about the starting effect of glutathione. It’ll give you a patchy effect in the beginning. Which will eventually lead to an even tone and slightly lighter skin? Now let’s talk about the different preparations of glutathione which are available in the market. So glutathione is basically available in three forms in the market: oral injectable and topical. The topical form is least effective because the molecular size of the internal is quite big and it is not able to penetrate into the skin. The oral form is also less effective than the injectable form because of poor absorption and poor bioavailability. Injectable glutathione is the most effective form of glutathione. There are new guidelines available for the use of glutathione as a skin-lightening agent. There is a most commonly applied or used regime of glutathione in which glutathione injections are given on alternate days. This frequency is gradually reduced to once in two weeks of injection. Once the desired skin color is achieved you can know always maintain glutathione for maintenance purposes. But it has to be understood both by the patient and the doctor that glutathione free interval is required by the body.
That is you cannot use the glutathione forever. Now coming to the most important and most frequently asked question for how long the result of glutathione will last.So basically the result will not last forever. We will have to use something or the other for maintenance purposes. This also has to be kept in mind that glutathione free intervals are also required by the body. Now let’s discuss the side effects of the glutathione. Side effects can be short term or long term. Side effects are not many when it is used under the supervision of a qualified dermatologist. Short term side effects, like patchiness of skin color and loss of hair color, can happen. There are no studies available to discuss the long-term side effects of glutathione. Coming to the cost of glutathione as a skin-lightening agent. It is an expensive drug to be used as a skin-lightening agent. I would like to say that you should always undergo this procedure under the supervision of a qualified doctor.