All you need to know about one of our ingredients: L-methionine

All you need to know about L-methionine

One of Nutrafols ingredients is L-Methionine and it is described like this:
“L-Methionine is an essential amino acid necessary for hair growth, aiding the development of the hair shaft. It also helps promote overall scalp health and works against graying.”
But what exactly is L-Methionine and what does it do for you?

L-Methionine 101:

L-Methionine or methionine provides an important role relating to the growth of new blood vessels. The body has the ability to produce methionine on its own but supplementing with L-Methionine has been shown to help with the overall health.

But how does is work?

Your body uses L-Methionine to make creatine, which is another type of amino acid. L-Methionine also contains sulfur, which is used by the body for healthy growth and metabolism, and it is responsible for a compound known as s-adenosylmethionine or SAMe. SAMe supports the proper function of the immune system, dopamine, serotonin and melatonin; and cell membranes.
So what does all this mean? It means that L-Methionine benefits your body in many ways but it also means that you should not overdo it since your body produces it on its own.

So let’s take a look at the benefits of L-Methionine

May help reduce risk of colorectal cancer

According to a study, conducted in Melbourne, Australia, methionine, along with B vitamins and other minerals, may help reduce the risk of colorectal cancer. The study observed foods that were eaten as well as micronutrients, such as folate, methionine, and vitamins B6 and B12, and those with antioxidant properties like selenium, vitamins E and C, and lycopene. Though the tests studied many of these vitamins, minerals and amino acids individually, overall, the data supports the conclusion that a diet containing all of these micronutrients, including methionine, may help lower colorectal cancer risks.

L-Methionine is building bone strength

Researchers at the Institute of Physical Education, Health and Leisure Studies at National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan came to the conclusion that methionine has a positive effect on bones. They gave rats different diets, some with L-Methionine foods, and others without. After eight weeks, the rats that exercised, had a 9.2 percent lower body weight. Which is no surprise considering that you lose weight when exercising.

However, the part that became evident was the part that had an effect on bone volume compared to those who were fed the diets without methionine supplements.
Results showed that methionine combined with exercise caused lower bone mass, size and strength, but improved natural bone strength overall.

Besides from that L-Methionine also…

  • Supports the liver.
    SAMe combined with vitamins B6 and B12 may help treat the effects of liver disease.
  • Helps you lose weight.
    Thanks to the creatine creation, methionine can help you lose weight.
  • Can help lower tremors in Parkinson’s patients.
    Methionine may be able to help bringing down the tremors that comes with Parkinson’s. It also prevents aging related to oxidative damage and loss of dopamine, helping treat Parkinson’s symptoms.
All you need to know about L-methionine
Oats are a great source of L-methionine so try to eat a bowl of oat meal every morning to make sure your methionine levels are in order.

With that being said, you should always be on the look out for…

L-Methionine foods. The list of food that contains methionine is long. Meat and fish contain the highest levels of L-Methionine. But there are some alternatives even for those that are not big meat fans, such as:

  • Egg whites
  • Seaweed and spirulina
  • Sesame seeds
  • Brazil nuts
  • Oats
  • Sunflower butter

You can purchase supplements too of course, but it is most likely that you are already getting all the methionine that you need through your food.


Photos: Marco Verch and Pedro Reyna via Flickr.