What It Does
Glucosamine is an amino sugar normally formed from glucose. It is the starting point for the syntheses of many important macromolecules including: glycoproteins, glycolipids and glycos-aminoglycans (mucopolysaccharides). These macromolecules make up many of the body’s tissues including: basement membranes, mucous membranes in the digestive and respiratory tracts, and synovial fluid in the joints.
A deficiency of glucosamine can reduce the rate of production of these important macromolecules thereby leading to specific tissue weakness. In certain cases of trauma to the tissues, the amount of glucosamine normally synthesized by the body is insufficient. The tissues containing these glucosamine macromolecules include tendons and ligaments, cartilage, synovial fluid, mucus membranes, several structures in the eye, blood vessels, and heart valves.
How It Works in the Body
Glucosamine Sulfate is one of the biological chemicals that forms all the major cushioning ingredients of joint fluids and surrounding tissues. Glucosamine Sulfate and its associated macromolecules help to make the synovial fluid thick and elastic in joints and vertebrae.
Tissues in the joints can become damaged when these lubricating synovial fluids in the joint spaces become thin and watery. The normal cushioning is lost and consequently the bones and the cartilage scrape against each other inside the joint space. Weakened bursa sacs in the joints can also cause tendons to run against the hard edges of bones, increasing the chance that the cartilage will erode and cause problems with movement and flexibility. These problems can also occur in the spinal column where the individual vertebrae are stacked on top of each other, separated only by the cushioning disc. The space between the vertebrae is where many nerves leave the spinal cord–thus increasing the value of the cushioning fluid. Any injury to this part of the back can cause the gelatinous cartilage to soften. When this happens pressure may be put on the nerves, causing damage and loss of nerve function. Glucosamine Sulfate helps increase the thickness of the gelatinous material, creating more support for the joints and vertebrae.
Positive Results For A Variety Of Conditions
Glucosamine Sulfate can increase the chance for positive results in a short period of time for a variety of problems including:
- Breakdown and inflammation of the synovial fluids
- Damage to the tissues, ligaments and muscles
- Inflamed disc and sciatica nerve
- Inflamed joints associated with aging
- Loss of elasticity on the invertebral discs
There have been numerous studies showing the beneficial effects of Glucosamine Sulfate and its relationship with the symptoms of Osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. There are many over-the-counter medications available to relieve arthritis symptoms, yet conventional medicine has nothing to offer in terms of controlling or reversing the condition. In fact, there is evidence that long-term use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) actually accelerate joint destruction in patients with osteoarthritis, by interfering with the body’s healing mechanism.
Glucosamine Sulfate, which is naturally found in high concentrations in joint structures, appears to be one remedy that helps osteoarthritic causes and symptoms. Glucosamine Sulfate has been shown to exert a protective effect against joint destruction and is selectively used by joint tissues, exerting a powerful healing effect on arthritic symptoms.
Glucosamine Sulfate vs. Over The Counter Drugs
Glucosamine Sulfate is not an analgesic or an anti-inflammatory agent, rather it appears to halt the disease process. Improvements occur more slowly with Glucosamine Sulfate than with over-the-counter arthritis medications (NSAIDs), but eventually Glucosamine overtakes the NSAIDs in terms of effectiveness. An example of this is one study that compared Glucosamine Sulfate to Ibuprofen. Pain scores decreased faster in the first two weeks in the Ibuprofen group. However, by the fourth week of the study, the group receiving the Glucosamine Sulfate was doing significantly better than the Ibuprofen group. In addition, Glucosamine Sulfate is virtually free of side effects and there are no known contra-indications. Glucosamine Sulfate is stable and tasteless.