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Is Glutathione Safe For Breastfeeding Mothers?

Medically reviewed by Mae Charisse Antalan, MD · General Practitioner

Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. · Updated May 25, 2023

Is Glutathione Safe For Breastfeeding Mothers?

Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant that helps support the immune system. Since nursing mothers want their baby to have optimal immunity, it’s natural to wonder: Is glutathione safe for breastfeeding mothers? Is it effective? Here’s what you need to know about this essential supplement and how it affects your body while nursing.

Is Glutathione Safe for Breastfeeding Mothers?

Glutathione is a non-toxic antioxidant that the body makes naturally. Generally, it’s a safe ingredient for adult supplements. However, there have not been any studies on the safety of glutathione supplementation during breastfeeding, so it is important to discuss it with your doctor first before taking it regularly.

When you’re breastfeeding, a healthy diet with possible supplementation becomes even more important. After all, you burn calories as you nurse, and whatever you consume may have a direct impact on your breast milk. Hence, you need to make sure that the foods and supplements you take are safe for the baby. 

So, while glutathione is a natural antioxidant that can help protect both you and your baby from toxins and even combat the effects of oxidative stress, it’s best to consult your doctor before using any supplement during this time period (including taking birth control pills). 

Will Taking Glutathione Carry Extra Antioxidants in My Breast Milk? 

If there’s one thing that mothers might find appealing with glutathione supplementation, it is most likely the possibility that it will “transfer” antioxidants to their breast milk, which may benefit their baby. 

Reports say human milk naturally contains glutathione and it can protect against the potentially harmful effects of oxidative stress. 

Oxidative stress occurs when there is too many free radicals or too few antioxidants. Too many free radicals can cause damage at a cellular level that can lead to inflammation in your body’s tissues and organs. 

Glutathione is one of the most powerful antioxidants in nature; it can protect us by neutralizing these harmful compounds as they form within a cell or tissue structure itself. Having enough of it in your body is beneficial, but there’s not enough data to determine if taking supplements while breastfeeding will benefit the newborn. 

Additional Information About Glutathione Supplements 

It is best not to take glutathione while breastfeeding or if you are pregnant or trying to get pregnant. This is because the connection between this supplement and nursing, fertility, or pregnancy is not yet well-established. Your doctor will only recommend glutathione if the benefits outweigh the risks. 

When you are ready to start taking glutathione, proceed with caution, particularly if you have an underlying health condition or are taking other medication. Supplementation may affect your existing illness or interact with drugs. 

Also, remember that as with other supplements, side effects may occur. Glutathione may cause digestive symptoms, like nausea and vomiting. The possibility of having an allergic reaction is also present, so be mindful of strong reactions, such as swelling and difficulty breathing. 

In the Meantime…

If you’re interested in taking glutathione for its purported benefits on skin lightening, remember that there are other ways to achieve it. You can talk to your dermatologist about methods of skin lightening that are safe and effective for you.

If you’re after glutathione’s antioxidant benefits, keep in mind that there are various sources of antioxidants. Having plenty of fruits and vegetables, for instance, is an excellent way to get your antioxidant fill. 

Key Takeaways

In conclusion, there is no evidence that taking glutathione while breastfeeding can harm your baby, but there are also no studies saying that glutathione can be beneficial for your breast milk or newborn. Overall, taking glutathione while breastfeeding should be considered together with your physician. Most likely, they will not recommend the supplement unless the benefits outweigh the risks. Additional reminders to take note of are your existing illnesses, medicines, or allergies.

Learn more about Breastfeeding here


Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Medically reviewed by

Mae Charisse Antalan, MD

General Practitioner

Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. · Updated May 25, 2023

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