Glycine has the simplest chemical structure amongst the amino acids but it is one of the most versatile of them. As the body can synthesize this amino acid so it is a non-essential amino acid. Glycine is glycogenic and antiketogenic.


Since the cells of the human body can synthesize sufficient amounts of glycine to meet its needs, glycine is not considered an essential amino acid. Notwithstanding, glycine plays a major role in the synthesis of proteins, peptides, purines, adenosine triphosphate (ATP), nucleic acids, porphyrins, hemoglobin, glutathione, creatine, bile salts, one-carbon fragments, glucose, glycogen, and L-serine and many more amino acids. Glycine is also a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. Glycine and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) are the major inhibitory neurotransmitters in the central nervous system.


Researchers now also believe that glycine may play an important role in helping to maintain the health of the prostate. It was observed in a recent study of men with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) that taking 780 mg of glycine per day for two weeks and then 390 mg for the next two and a half months, taken in combination with equal amounts of the amino acids, alanine and glutamic acid, reduced symptoms of the BPH. Glycine also enhances the activity of chemical messengers (neurotransmitters) in the brain and may possibly improve both memory and cognition.


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