NAC Supplements & Information


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N-acetylcysteine (or N-acetyl L-cysteine, abbreviated here as NAC) is a compound that is found naturally in the body.  It is a precursor to a chemical called glutathione, which plays a large role in detoxification of foreign substances in the body.  NAC itself is a strong antioxidant; it can neutralize free radicals that damage DNA and cells.  Several laboratory experiments have tried to see whether this strong antioxidant could prevent cancer in rats, which it appears to do, to some extent.  Rats fed NAC have less cellular damage from mutagens and carcinogens (cancer-causing substances) and fewer carcinogen-induced lung, colon, and bladder tumors, compared to rats fed a normal diet.  In addition, NAC interferes with tumor invasion, metastasis (spread), and blood vessel growth (angiogenesis) in lab experiments.

NAC also has mucolytic properties, meaning it can dissolve and loosen mucus in patients with respiratory disorders such as cystic fibrosis and COPD.  Studies in animals also show that it might protect against tissue damage from drugs such as doxorubicin, ifosfamide, and cyclophosphamide.  These effects are currently being studied in humans.   Read more below...

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  • Reduce congestion related to sinusitis, bronchitis, asthma, and other respiratory diseases

  • Treat HIV-infected individuals

  • Lessen flu symptoms

  • Prevent heart disease

  • Delay age-related cataracts and macular degeneration

  • Counter environmental toxins

  • Lessen the risk of cancer

  • Slow the progression of multiple sclerosis

  • Affect the course of Parkinson's disease

  • Treat cystic fibrosis

  • Treat cirrhosis

  • Treat Lou Gehrig's Disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis)   vgo to top

Side Effects

NAC has no side effects as long as it is taken in the recommended dosage.  In high doses of oral NAC may cause gastrointestinal problems, such as vomiting, stomach upset, or in rare cases a rash possibly accompanied by fever.   vgo to top



  • This product is regulated by the FDA as a dietary supplement.  Unlike approved drugs, supplements are not required to be manufactured under specific standardized conditions.

  • Scientists must still determine how much NAC and glutathione can be safely absorbed and processed by the body.

  • Evidence indicates that in some healthy individuals, high doses of NAC (2,800 mg a day) can act as a pro-oxidant rather than an antioxidant, actually lowering levels of glutathione rather than increasing them. For this reason, otherwise healthy individuals may want to avoid taking high doses of NAC until more information is available.

  • Because there are no adequate studies of NAC in pregnant women, it's not recommended for women who are or may be pregnant.   vgo to top


Information on this site is provided for informational purposes and is not meant to substitute for the advice provided by your own physician or other medical profession. You should not use the information contained herein for diagnosing or treating a problem or disease, or prescribing any medication. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, promptly contact your health care provider.  Information and statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Please review the Terms of Use before using this site.  Your use of the site indicates your agreement to be bound by the Terms of Use.



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