General Product Information:
What Is Glucosamine?:
Glucosamine, is a natural substance found in the body and made from the combination of a sugar (glucose) and an amine, derived from the amino acid, glutamine. Available throughout the body, but found largely in the cartilage, Glucosamine is an important part of the mucopolysaccharides which form the proteoglycans which provide structure to the bones, cartilage, skin, nails, hair and other body tissues. It is thus essential for healthy cartilage, and to maintain healthy joints and pain-free mobility. It is essentially non-toxic even in doses many times greater than those needed for relief.
What Is Chondroitin?:
Formed from a long chain of sugar molecules, chondroitin acts like a 'liquid magnet', helping to attract fluid into the proteoglycan molecules. This is important for two reasons: 1. The fluid acts as spongy shock absorber, and also sweeps nutrients into the cartilage. 2. Joint cartilage has no blood supply which means its nourishment and lubrication comes from the liquid which enters and leaves the cartilage as pressure is applied to the joint.
What Is MSM?
MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) supplies the mineral sulfur, a vital building block of joints, cartilage, skin, hair, and nails. MSM is a naturally-occurring nutrient found in small amounts of many foods. MSM can be taken alone or in combination with other joint health supplements, such as glucosamine and chondroitin.
Published, peer-reviewed clinical research in the U.S. has shown MSM is safe and effective in increasing joint comfort and supporting a normal range of motion. After several reports that MSM helped arthritis in animal models, a double-blind, placebo-controlled study suggested that 1500 mg per day MSM (alone or in combination with glucosamine sulfate) was helpful in relieving symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. (Usha PR, Naidu MUR. Clin Drug Invest 2004;24(6):353 63.)
What Causes The Pain In Arthritis?:
As the result of injury or aging, joint function is often impaired when cartilage, the protective covering at the end of the bones, breaks down. Loss of cartilage can lead to damage of the bone and eventually the development of osteoarthritis, a degenerative disease resulting in pain and disability. Recent research suggests that the health and function of the cartilage depends on the availability of special nutrients which include Vitamin C and two complex sugar-like molecules called Glucosamine and Chondroitin. When taken in the diet, glucosamine and chondroitin may actually help to rebuild cartilage and improve joint health, which offers a simple way to help maintain healthy joints and reduce the problems associated with cartilage breakdown and even osteoarthritis itself!
What Exactly Is Cartilage?:
Cartilage is a watery substance, made up of some 65 to 80% of water plus collagen and proteoglycans which form the cartilage matrix, and special cells called chondrocytes. Collagen and proteoglycans are the substances which confer the amazing resilience and shock absorption qualities of cartilage and make it possible for the ends of the bones to slide effortlessly and smoothly across each other. Thus glucosamine and chondroitin sulphates are an essential part of the structure of cartilage. Collagen, a vital part of cartilage is a primary connective tissue, which exists in various forms and performs many different functions. Acting rather like an adhesive or glue-like substance throughout the body, it helps maintain structure and in cartilage it provides a framework to hold the proteoglycans in place as well as providing elasticity and shock-absorbency. Proteoglycans, are huge, complex molecules composed of proteins and sugars. They interlink with the collagen fibers, forming a dense matrix or network inside the cartilage, making it resilient so that it can stretch when we move, and spring back into place. Proteoglycans also trap water from the tissues, acting like a sponge giving cartilage the flexibility needed to compensate for constant movement in the joint. Chondrocytes are special cells found throughout the cartilage matrix which produce new collagen and proteoglycan molecules to help ensure sufficient of these vital substances are available. However, the chondrocytes also produce special enzymes which break down ageing collagen and proteoglycan molecules, so that if the collagen which wears out is not replaced, joint problems are likely to develop.