Is Glucosamine -Chondroitin - MSM a Power-Packed Trio for Joints?
lucosamine alongside chondroitin and MSM has been used in alternative medicine to treat osteoarthritis, muscle damages, and more importantly, inflammatory joint disorders. Damages to the joints due to injuries or diseases could interfere with movement and cause a lot of pain. Several conditions that cause painful joints include osteoarthritis, gout, bursitis, strains, sprains, etc.
Combination of glucosamine, chondroitin, and MSM (GCM) are touted not only as arthritis pain relievers but also as treatments that help prevent joint diseases.
Everything you need to know about the trio: Glucosamine, Chondroitin, and Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)
While Glucosamine-Chondroitin sulfate combination has been used frequently to prevent joint degeneration in people suffering from osteoarthritis, MSM has been found to slow down anatomical join deterioration in knee osteoarthritis. Glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate are both components of human cartilages. They are in fact, the building blocks of cartilage and play a vital role in stimulating the body to produce more cartilage.
And methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is a tasteless and odorless natural sulfur compound that is present in all living things. It is required by the human body for healthy connective tissue and joint function and has been touted for its pain-quashing and anti-inflammatory properties.
Glucosamine and chondroitin supplements are often taken together in a single daily supplement or sometimes coupled with MSM. GCM combination is the most commonly used supplement in the United States for those suffering from joint pain other joint-related ailments. Around 7.4% of older individuals reported that the combination was superior to acetaminophen in reducing joint pain.
What are the sources of glucosamine, chondroitin, and MSM?
- Glucosamine is naturally found in the shells of shellfish, bone marrow, animal bones, and even fungi. It is also been derived from Corn. You can buy the vegan GCM from Zenith Nutrition.
- Chondroitin is present naturally in animal tissues, particularly the connective tissues. Chondroitin supplements are made from animal sources like shark or beef cartilage
- MSM is found in several foods like fish, meat, vegetables, fruits, and grains. It is destroyed during food processing
How does this trio help joints?
Glucosamine and chondroitin protect chondrocytes- which are cells that are responsible for maintaining cartilage structure. They can help decelerate cartilage deterioration in joints alongside reducing the pain. And MSM, taken in doses of up to 6g per day, has been demonstrated to reduce pain, stiffness and improve function. Glucosamine-chondroitin sulfate combination has been recommended for those suffering from joint pain. Various studies have demonstrated that the combination has aided reduction in pain, swelling, and joint space narrowing when taken in doses of 800 to 1200 mg per day.
A 2011 study revealed that glucosamine, chondroitin, and a combination of the two – all the three interventions significantly improved knee osteoarthritis pain. A 2017 study That sought to compare glucosamine-chondroitin sulfate combination with or without MSM in knee osteoarthritis revealed that the combination of glucosamine-chondroitin sulfate-methylsulfonylmethane(MSM) significantly improved the symptoms of individuals suffering from knee osteoarthritis compared to those who took only glucosamine-chondroitin sulfate. The study participants took the supplement combination once every day for 3 consecutive months.
A 2015 randomized open-label comparative study which was conducted to test the efficacy and tolerability of a drug containing 400 mg chondroitin sulfate, 500 mg glucosamine hydrochloride and 300 mg methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) in individuals suffering from knee osteoarthritis revealed that the combination of all the three offered prompter pain relief compared to the combination of only chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine hydrochloride. The study authors strongly recommended the trio for treating osteoarthritis in clinical practice.
Another study conducted in 2011 which sought to determine whether sedentary obese women suffering from knee osteoarthritis who indulged in physical activities and weight loss program might gain more benefits compared to those who indulged in a healthy diet with or without GCM supplementation. The findings revealed that, although the physical activity (circuit style resistance-training) and weight loss regimen improved functional capacity in obese women with knee osteoarthritis, diet, and dietary supplementation of glucosamine – chondroitin – MSM reduce pain perceptions.
What are the side effects of GCM?
Like any other supplementation, glucosamine -chondroitin – MSM supplementation is also prone to side effects including the following:
- abdominal cramps
- Swellings in feet or ankles
- Skin itching or irritation
- Puffy eyelids
Seek immediate medical help in case of allergic reactions, hives, breathing difficulties, swelling of lips, face, throat, or tongue. The medicinal use of GCM combination isn’t approved by the FDA and should not be used to replace any medication prescribed by your healthcare provider.
Who shouldn’t take glucosamine- chondroitin – MSM combination supplementation?
If you are allergic to any of these 3 compounds, you should refrain from taking GCM supplements for ailments including knee osteoarthritis. And those with underlying health conditions including diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, asthma, allergies, bleeding disorders, prostate cancer should discuss with their doctors before indulging in GCM supplementation.In case you need surgery, you might need to refrain from taking GCM supplementation at