Should you take Glucosamine
for your arthritis symptoms?
Glucosamine is an amino acid that is naturally produced in the body. It functions as a building block in the creation and repair of cartilage. Because of this function, it is commonly recommended for those experiencing arthritis symptoms. Does it work? Is it worth the money? What does the research say?
The theory is that supplementation can help by ensuring that these building blocks are present in sufficient quantity in order to help repair joint cartilage. As
is a disease of the cartilage of the joint, improving the repair of joint cartilage can improve pain and function.
Two types of this supplement are used in the treatment of joint pain: sulfate and hydrochloride. There have been over 20 randomized trials with over 2,500 participants studying its effects, making it the most studied of all joint supplements.
Unfortunately, the evidence is still not conclusive. Differing study methods, product formulations, dosage, and measurement tools have made determining clear effectiveness difficult. However, the research has identified some aspects that can be helpful in determining if this supplement worth trying.
Here is what the evidence has indicated:
• Glucosamine sulfate has a potential benefit where almost all of the studies on hydrochloride have shown little to no benefit. One study demonstrated a slight benefit with hydrochloride with only those suffering from severe arthritis.
• Studies have shown that a specific formulation of glucosamine sulfate, called Dona, has demonstrated the most consistent results in reducing pain. In research where the sulfate formulation was most effective, this DONA brand was used.
• The most common effective dose of glucosamine sulfate is 1500mg per day.
• Both sulfate and hydrochloride have been shown to be safe with no know drug interactions and less side effects then anti-inflammatory medications.
• There is no indication that combining glucosamine sulfate with chondroitin yields greater benefits.
Glucosamine sulfate may have some benefit in the treatment of joint pain. Research indicates that the DONA brand may be the most consistent in providing joint relief. Utilize this information to help you determine if it is right for you.
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