Benefits Of Glucosamine For Arthritis

Glucosamine for Arthritis

When Glucosamine first appeared on the market being touted as a joint repairer for arthritis, its sales pitch looked too good to be true and initially, as a clinician, I was reluctant to recommend it to clients. Over the last 10 years all the benefits ascribed to it have been fully validated. Some doctors now recommend it and it can be prescribed. Glucosamine comes in three forms, most people opting for Glucosamine Sulphate. But Glucosamine Chloride with MSM, a very bio-available form of sulphur, seems to be the most cost effective way of providing the nutrients that appear to protect and strengthen cartilage.

Glucosamine is an effective pain reliever for arthritis

The very least Glucosamine will do is prevent further damage. As a pain reliever it is more effective than Ibuprofen, but only after four to eight weeks use. In the initial phase of treatment, and ongoing, using herbs like Boswellia, Devils Claw or hop extracts can enhance the pain killing aspect. More importantly, none of these products damage the digestive tract; in fact the Glucosamine and MSM can be used to help people with digestive disorders. Compare this with medical options; the first choice is likely to be the use of drugs that are referred to as non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs, NSAID’s, including Ibuprofen. These drugs are notorious for causing digestive damage, a factor that is well recognized.

Less recognized and certainly less publicized, is that this excellent pain killer has an additional reputation for eroding the cartilage in the affected joints, leading to the potential of needing to use even higher dosage of Ibuprofen as time goes on. The other thing that somehow does not make banner headlines in the press is the fact that NSAID’s cause 20,000 deaths annually in the USA and account for 120,000 hospitalizations each year. Figures for the UK are more difficult to come by. Despite this, Ibuprofen is considered safe enough to be sold without prescription in both countries.

Glucosamine and Celadrin treating arthritis

The same company that introduced the use of Glucosamine into the UK has introduced a product called Celadrin that looks set to complement Glucosamine. It is a powerful anti-inflammatory, much more powerful than the much acclaimed use of fish oil. It is a specific fatty acid that induces changes in the cell membranes and the response of these membranes to certain immune factors. In short Celadrin like NSAID’s reduces the inflammation activities of the Cox-2 enzyme.

More importantly, from the users point of view it is worth understanding that only as Glucosamine MSM etc. begins to rebuild the joint does the inflammatory process abate. Being able to reduce the inflammation from day one using Celadrin means Glucosamine and MSM can begin to repair the joint even more effectively and at an earlier stage. Celadrin is useful for all inflammatory conditions, including asthma, fibromyalgia, lupus, psoriasis and sports injuries to name but a few. Like so many “natural” products, when deciding to use them, the consideration is not for negative side effects but so often the additional benefits, particularly when coupled with a more vegetarian approach to food selection.

Article Submitted By
Brian Hampton, The Caring Clinic, Sheffield

Date Published
18/04/08

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