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Glycine is a non-essential amino acid, meaning the body can produce it on its own. As with any amino acid, the body cannot function properly without glycine, although a glycine deficiency is rare.

In fact, it is so rare that there are no medically recorded cases of glycine deficiency published. Even though it is so rare, there are dozens of nutritional supplements that have glycine in their ingredient list.

Glycine has an active role in many of the body’s functions. This is part of the reason why glycine supplements are so popular. However, scientific studies to support the benefits of taking glycine as a supplement don’t exist.


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How Glycine Works in Your Body Glycine is utilized in the body to create ordinary DNA and RNA strands. Glycine is part of the body’s creatine creation process and it aids in the building of body mass as a result. Glycine is found in muscles, connective tissue and skin and is a major compon... more

How Glycine Works in Your Body

Glycine is utilized in the body to create ordinary DNA and RNA strands. Glycine is part of the body’s creatine creation process and it aids in the building of body mass as a result. Glycine is found in muscles, connective tissue and skin and is a major component found in collagen.

Another benefit of glycine is that it helps the digestive tract work correctly. It is key in ensuring that there is enough acid in the stomach to properly digest food.

Glycine is also part of the process in the human body which creates energy. It can also help the body naturally combat issues such as depression, ADD and even seizures.

Glycine is also found in the prostate gland. Research studies are currently being developed to test its importance to a healthy prostate.

Medical Applications for Glycine

It isn’t uncommon for a psychiatrist to prescribe glycine to their schizophrenic patients. In small studies, glycine has been providing benefits to the majority of patients who participate. 

In these patients their symptoms of schizophrenia were markedly reduced. It’s important to note that the largest study to date contained only twenty people. Far more research is needed to determine glycine’s overall benefits in treating mental illness.

There are those who claim that glycine is proven to fight some types of cancer, but this isn’t so. Glycine is an antioxidant and many people assume that all antioxidants help fight cancer.  In truth, it requires a combination of the right antioxidants to provide this benefit so you need to ingest many different types.

There are several claims about glycine that cannot be proven. This, however, doesn’t stop companies from claiming these benefits. These unsubstantiated claims include:

  • Glycine can improve your memory
  • Glycine can eliminate hypertrophy in the prostate
  • Glycine prevents cancer
  • Glycine protects the liver

Glycine Side Effects

Fortunately, when taken normally, there seem to be no overall ill effects when taking glycine. You will find that some people experience drowsiness, nausea, stomachache, and even vomiting when they take glycine, but these are not life threatening problems.

There are, however, real concerns for people who take too much glycine. The side effects can be quite dangerous in this case. Some of the side effects of a glycine overdose include:

  • Acidosis
  • Backache
  • Blurry vision
  • Chills
  • Coma
  • Convulsions
  • Dehydration
  • Diuresis
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth & thirst
  • Edema
  • Hyponatremia
  • Hypotension
  • Loss of electrolytes
  • Nausea
  • Pulmonary congestion
  • Rhinitis
  • Tachycardia
  • Transient blindness
  • Urinary retention
  • Vertigo

As you can see, taking the recommended dose is necessary to ensure that you don’t have an adverse reaction. If you think that you have taken too much glycine then you should seek medical attention immediately.

Glycine Dosage

There are three ways that glycine can be administered, through the mouth, under the tongue and topically. You cannot take glycine through an IV; studies have shown that the body reacts immediately to the glycine, behaving as if it has received an overdose.

There is no standard dose of glycine. There is also no recommended daily allowance by the FDA or the USDA for glycine. 

Often, when it comes to oral doses, you will see 500 mg pills with manufacturer instructions to take two pills per day. In most cases, you should actually start with one pill each day to see if you have any adverse reactions and slowly increase your dose to the maximum from there.

Liquid glycine, which is placed under the tongue, is only available via a prescription from your physician.The dose for this is typically around 4 grams per day, depending upon the reason for its use.

There is no concern of overdose when glycine is applied topically. Simply follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding the product that you are using.  

If you experience any adverse reactions, seek medical attention immediately. If your body responds badly to glycine, the damage may be permanent. To locate and compare products containing glycine, use the supplement finder now!


  • Side Effects
  • Other Names
  • Uses
Stomach Aches
Overdose May Cause More Serious Side Effects
Aminoacetic Acid, Athenon, Free Base Glycine, G Salt, Glycina, Glycocoll, Glycosthene, Iconyl, L-Glycine, Monazol
Mental Illness
Seizure Disorders