Glucosamine Supplements - Relief For Joint Pain

If you suffer from joint pain, then you are most likely familiar with the term glucosamine, which is hailed as a wonder supplement. Advertising claims run the gambit from those assuring consumers that their joint pain may at least be temporarily held at bay to those that show seniors playing squash and table tennis just minutes after taking the supplement.  Are these claims rooted in truth?

Glucosamine supplements are nothing more than amino sugars, which were originally used to treat osteoarthritis. Patients who suffered from this disease experienced inflammation in their joints that was based on a reduction in the cartilage that cushions them. Since movement is so painful, patients tended to remain immobile for as much of the day as possible, and as a result their muscles would atrophy. To avoid the latter, and to encourage the patients to continue a lifestyle as healthy as possible, physicians concentrated on alleviating the pain associated with movement, and glucosamine was found to be somewhat of a miracle drug.

Unlike many vitamins and other substances, glucosamine is not something you can ingest with your daily meals. As a matter of fact, it is usually synthesized in the body.  The introduction of glucosamine supplements did not occur until it became a valid treatment for osteoarthritis.  Of course, since then it has taken off and the supplementation industry is singing its praises loud and clear.

Long running research does show that glucosamine supplements do indeed work to ease joint pain and may also increase flexibility. Other studies even appear to evidence that it helps to rebuild cartilage! The dose that is usually given in these tests is 1,500 mg.  Testers found that the liquid form is superior to the pill form. Patients who take the liquid form of glucosamine also find that it far surpasses the effects felt from pills or powders.

Obviously, since the liquid enters the stomach without a barrier, such as a pill coating, it is absorbed right away, which means that the benefits may be derived sooner rather than later from this dose.  Secondly, if you happen to suffer from a gastric ailment that might interfere with your stomach’s ability to break down a pill, you will not get the full benefit of your dose unless you do use the liquid form. One word of caution: the glucosamine that you will usually find on the store shelf is derived from shellfish, and if you have allergies to shellfish, you may wish to first consult your physician about this supplement, or perhaps stay away from it altogether.

If you are ready to invest in your dose of this wonder supplement for joint pain, make sure that you purchase a brand that will offer you maximum benefits!

One dose of a glucosamine supplement should contain 1,500 mg.  If the supplement you are taking does not, then it means that you will have to take more doses to achieve the desired effect.  This, of course, will cost you more money.

The glucosamine supplement should be in a liquid form.

Glucosamine should be contained in either the sulfate form or the HCL, but the best supplements contain them both. Make sure you read the labels thoroughly.  Sadly, some manufacturers will include a trace of glucosamine in HCL form, but the lion’s share of the dose is made up of NaCl, which is a fancy way of spelling table salt. Beware of binders, fillers, and herbs that you have never heard of!

Keep in mind that in the United States glucosamine supplements are not substances that falls under the jurisdiction of the Food and Drug Administration, so wild claims are not surprising.  Additionally, the mixing of strange concoctions with a variety of ineffective ingredients is not unheard of. In case of a doubt, it is best to consult your physician or an alternative medicine practitioner for an educated opinion.

As you can see, the studies to prove that glucosamine supplements will ease joint pain, decrease inflammation, and even rebuild cartilage are there; unfortunately, the oversight from a federal level that guarantees supplement purity and dosing are non-existent.  It is up to you, the buyer, to beware and check out the manufacturer’s reputation on your own.


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