The substance known as glucosamine naturally occurs in fluid found around the joints. It occurs naturally in fungi, shellfish, bone marrow and animal bones. When finding out about what is glucosamine, it’s important to realize that it plays a role in building cartilage and is consumed commonly in supplement form by individuals and even animals that may suffer from arthritis, specifically osteoarthritis.
Glucosamine sulphate and glucosamine is harvested out of shells from shellfish and then placed into types of dietary supplements. In addition, glucosamine can be created in laboratories.
What Is Glucosamine
Glucosamine occurs in three different forms that include:
- Glucosamine hydrochloride
- Glucosamine sulphate
Even though these three forms are similar in nature, they will not have similar effects when they are utilized as a dietary supplement. Many of the studies used to examine the potential health benefits, focus on the form known as glucosamine sulphate.
Dietary supplements that contain glucosamine will more than often contain other types of added ingredients such as shark cartilage, MSM or chondroitin sulphate. Some individuals claim that these combinations may help. However, there is no known scientific proof that it exists that it does.
The NIH (National Institutes of Health) claims that creams for the skin that contain glucosamine used for arthritis pains, probably only assist with relief due to other substances present in the creams. This is due to the fact that there is no evidence about that glucosamine is absorb able through the skin tissue.
The Need For Glucosamine
Glucosamine is essential for building cartilage. This cartilage is tough, flexible connective tissue that is located around various areas in the human body. This rubbery, fine tissue performs the function of a cushion or padding for the joints and the bones. Joint cartilage needs glucosamine as it is a type of precursor for the glycosaminoglycans as glucosamine creates glycosaminoglycans.
Sulfur is a component that must be added into cartilage so that it can repair or make it. Glucosamine plays the important role of incorporating this sulfur into the cartilage. As people age, the glucosamine levels generally go down, which generally leads to joint deterioration.
This supplement type is more commonly used by individuals who suffer from ulcerative colitis, IBD (inflammatory bowel disease) and osteoarthritis. A number of scientific studies display that supplements containing glucosamine can assist individuals with osteoarthritis, especially in the knee or hip. It is also used to treat arthritis in dogs and other animals.
These studies found glucosamine probably performed the following:
- Provide relief from symptoms related to arthritis even three months after treatment
- Reduced the swelling from occurring in joints
- Reduced stiffness
- Improved the general function in individuals with hip or knee osteoarthritis
- Reduced the pain related to osteoarthritis
Many of the studies that have been performed indicate that individuals who suffer from osteoarthritis with pain symptoms that are moderate to severe, a glucosamine and chrondroitin combination or glucosamine on its own can be of assistance. Otherwise, some studies suggest that it may not be any better than using a placebo. Without scientific evidence present, it is still unclear about the effectiveness of glucosamine in supplements.