Glucosamine: What is it and What are the Benefits?

Glucosamine is a natural substance in the human body. It is found in cartilage whose function is to cushion the major joints during regular movement. It has gained popularity as a supplement thanks to a wealth of scientific evidence that supports a number of health benefits.

What is glucosamine?

Glucosamine is a natural substance found mostly in cartilage. Cartilage is a tough tissue that provides a cushion for the joints.

When glucosamine is taken as a supplement, it is not human but is made in a laboratory or harvested from the shells of shellfish. There are various types, the most common of which are glucosamine sulfate and glucosamine hydrochloride. 

Benefits of glucosamine?

Glucosamine is claimed to

The most common use of glucosamine is for osteoarthritis. Much scientific evidence supports its use as a supplement and is also prescribed as medication in the EU. Supplements that combine glucosamine and chondroitin are an excellent alternative for people who do not tolerate NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs).

Glucosamine helps create the fats and protein to repair cartilage when it’s damaged. Remember, damage doesn’t mean physical injury. Cartilage can suffer from overwork, stress, and trauma in the same way as muscles. Aiding the repair function is how the supplement helps to reduce inflammation.

There is evidence that glucosamine supports healthy bone growth by slowing down the weakening of bones that occurs during aging, particularly post-menopause in females.

It is thought that among the antioxidant effects of glucosamine are benefits to the blood vessels in the eye and can improve conditions like glaucoma.

Who should take glucosamine?

Glucosamine can be used by anyone who suffers from any of the conditions outlined above. For sufferers of arthritis, it can reduce inflammation and the associated pain and thereby enable better movement.

It is also useful to athletes. It can aid and speed up the general repair and recovery process after working out or a competition. It is not, however, a medical treatment for specific injuries such as a torn articular cartilage. Medical advice should be sought in this instance although glucosamine may well then be prescribed.

How to take glucosamine?

Glucosamine is not in any foodstuffs so can only be taken as a supplement. It is available in tablet, capsule, powder, or liquid form. It is commonly combined with chondroitin.

LIFEAID’s FITAID beverages are an easy way to get a measured dose of glucosamine along with CoQ10. Available in various flavors, check out the whole lineup here.

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