About the nutrient
s a small water-soluble molecule (an amino-monosaccharide) that the body itself can produce as part of the structure of our joints. Glucosamine is one of the major building blocks of joints, as well as glycosaminoglycan compounds such as hyaluronic acid. Chondroitin is a compound that helps to maintain the correct fluid balance in cartilage, as well as acting as a joint lubricant.
Why do we need to supplement?
Healthy joints and cartilage are important for maintaining quality of life. The better your joints function, the easier it is for you to stay physically active and enjoy different activities.
As demonstrated in research, glucosamine supplements may help maintain healthy joints while supporting cartilage in the joints. Joint tissues are susceptible to damage as a result of the normal ageing process, genetics, injuries, repetitive movements (such as work-related movement), lifting heavy weights incorrectly, being overweight/obese or avoiding strength-building exercise.
How does it work in the body?
Glucosamine is found naturally in the body where it plays an important role in making glycosaminoglycans and glycoproteins. Coupled with glucosamine is chondroitin, a substance that has demonstrated the ability to reduce joint pain and symptoms of inflammatory joint conditions such as osteoarthritis. These are compounds needed to maintain joints including cartilage (the natural lubrication between joints), tendons, synovial fluid and ligaments.
Benefits / Research
Studies show that supplementing glucosamine sulphate will reduce the rate of collagen (joint tissue) degradation and symptoms of osteoarthritis.
A meta-analysis of multiple studies found that the combination of glucosamine and chondroitin was effective in decreasing joint pain and improving joint mobility. Study authors also noted the ‘excellent’ safety of both compounds 1.
Reduces Symptoms of Osteoarthritis
Published in the British Medical Journal, a double-blind placebo trial demonstrates how impactful chondroitin supplementation is to joint health in practice. Participants with inflammatory knee conditions were split into three groups: a placebo group, a group receiving 200mg of the anti-inflammatory drug celebrex and a group receiving 800mg of pharmaceutical grade chondroitin sulphate.
800mg of chondroitin sulphate daily was found to significantly reduce pain in arthritis sufferers versus placebo, and was found to be similar in this regard to celebrex. The study lead concludes that versus anti-inflammatory drugs, chondroitin carries much less risk of adverse events 2.
In some studies, glucosamine sulphate has demonstrated the ability to help support recovery from injuries, including improving the range of motion in an injured joint in 28 days of 1500mg of supplementation 3.
Protect from collagen breakdown
Various studies demonstrate that 1500mg of glucosamine can significantly reduce signs of collagen breakdown, the substance important for the health and structure of not only joints, but skin as well 4.
Potential in heart health
A recent study published in the british medical journal found that those who habitually took glucosamine tablets were less likely to develop heart and arterial diseases, stroke and less likely to die from these conditions. It is suggested that glucosamine anti-inflammatory effect is responsible, which is a benefit that extends throughout the body - not just the joints.
Bio-Glucosamine Super contains 500 mg of glucosamine sulphate (the glucosamine form with the most clinical evidence) per tablet, coupled with 400 mg of chondroitin to help build synovial fluid to protect joints.
- Richy F, Bruyere O, Ethgen O, Cucherat M, Henrotin Y, Reginster J. Structural and Symptomatic Efficacy of Glucosamine and Chondroitin in Knee Osteoarthritis. Archives of Internal Medicine. 2003;163(13):1514.
- Reginster J, Dudler J, Blicharski T, Pavelka K. Pharmaceutical-grade Chondroitin sulfate is as effective as celecoxib and superior to placebo in symptomatic knee osteoarthritis: the ChONdroitin versus CElecoxib versus Placebo Trial (CONCEPT). Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases. 2017;76(9):1537-1543.
- Ostojic S, Arsic M, Prodanovic S, Vukovic J, Zlatanovic M. Glucosamine Administration in Athletes: Effects on Recovery of Acute Knee Injury. Research in Sports Medicine. 2007;15(2):113-124.
- Nagaoka. Evaluation of the effect of glucosamine administration on biomarkers for cartilage and bone metabolism in soccer players. International Journal of Molecular Medicine. 2009;24(04).