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March 26, 2019

What are Glucosamine and Chondroitin 

Glucosamine and chondroitin are two of the most well-known dietary supplements for people who have bone and joint diseases that are available on the market today. They are used together to treat joint pain that is caused by arthritis and musculoskeletal disorders as studies suggest that they have powerful anti-inflammatory properties.

Both supplements also help stops cartilage loss among patients who are suffering from osteoarthritis. A lot of medical research proves the effectiveness of glucosamine and chondroitin in rebuilding healthy joints and bones. Read and know more about the health benefits that you can get from glucosamine and chondroitin. 


Glucosamine naturally occurs in the body which is an essential nutrient since it is an amino sugar. It also helps stimulate joint function and repair and is most effective in relieving arthritis symptoms and treating osteoarthritis. It is a part of a molecule called glycosaminoglycan. Natural sources of glucosamine can be found in shellfish. 


Chondroitin is a substance that can be found in the body since it is formed in the cartilage. It is used to treat skin disorders such as eczema and psoriasis. And also musculoskeletal disorders such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It helps support healthy bone metabolism and reduce joint stiffness.  


Facts about Glucosamine and Chondroitin 


German surgeon, Dr Georg Ledderhose was the first one who identified glucosamine in the year 1876. The US Food and Drug Administration has not approved glucosamine for medicinal use, instead, it was classified as a dietary supplement. However, in Europe, it has been approved as medication and was recommended for osteoarthritis.


Chondroitin sulfate has been discovered by the German chemist, Fischer in the cartilage of cows in 1861. Chondroitin has been approved for osteoarthritis in different parts of the world. According to Harvard Health Publishing, as of 2016, there were about one in five American who takes glucosamine and one in ten people who take chondroitin.


Sources of Glucosamine and Chondroitin 


You can find glucosamine in bone marrow, animal bones, shellfish and crustaceans which include lobsters, crabs and shrimps. But, in order to make it vegetarian-friendly, manufacturers have made glucosamine supplements in laboratories by using the fungus called Aspergillus niger and fermented corn. 


Chondroitin is also derived from shellfish especially shrimp, that's why people who are allergic to shellfish should not take this product and ask for medical advice. Also, meat with visible connective tissue can be a source of chondroitin, that's why you can find chondroitin in bone broth.   


Health Benefits 

1. Arthritis Relief. Slows the progression of arthritis since it has anti-inflammatory properties. You can use the Thompson's Glucosamine and Chondroitin with Boron 120 Tablets to ease the pain from inflamed joints and support bone health. 

2. Promotes Mobility. Glucosamine and chondroitin are effective in promoting mobility and improving your bone and joint health. It can reduce early signs of bone loss and joint damage due to ageing and prevent bone diseases. 

3. Anti-inflammatory Properties. Promote mobility and increase flexibility while reducing arthritis pain and soothes inflamed joints. You can take Caruso’s Glucosamine 1500mg 120 Tablets to improve your joint health.

4. Cell Regeneration. Good for cell regeneration since they have antioxidants which can promote cell regeneration and tissue repair. Blackmores Glucosamine + Fish Oil 90 Capsules can promote healthy joints and bones. 

5. Skin Health. Can build your collagen structure which is essential for your skin. You can try taking Nature’s Way Glucosamine & Fish Oil 500mg 200 Capsules for your joint health and skin health as well.

6. Aids Digestion. Gives protection on your digestive tract which can be very helpful to prevent gut problems such as leaky gut, indigestion and diarrhoea. It can also protect your bladder and intestines. 

7. Bladder Function. Useful for improving the bladder function as well as treating painful bladder syndrome. Because of anti-inflammatory effects that both supplements provide, it can reduce inflammation on the bladder wall. 


Dosage and Duration 

Always remember that supplements are not always safe and require proper usage, that's why it is important to always read the label and follow directions. Also, before taking any kinds of supplements or medicines, consult your healthcare professional to advise you with the right dosage to prevent overdose and adverse side effects which include nausea, gastric problems, diarrhoea and heartburn.

Children. Children are not advised to drink glucosamine and chondroitin since it may cause adverse side effects when not properly administered. Some of the side effects include diarrhoea and abdominal pain. There are also reports of irregular heartbeats and hair loss after taking chondroitin supplement. 


For Glucosamine. The recommended therapeutic dosage for glucosamine is 1,500 mg per day for one to two months. But ongoing supplementation may be required in order to reduce pain and inflammation and to prevent the progression of arthritis. 

For Chondroitin. Normally, the recommended dosage is 400mg to 800mg per day which depends on the medical advice given by your healthcare professional. For knee osteoarthritis patients, the recommended dosage is 800 to 1,200 mg per day. 


Precautions and Interactions

Children and Pregnant Women. Keep out of reach of children for it may cause serious side effects when not properly administered. Glucosamine and chondroitin supplements are not recommended for children, pregnant women and nursing mothers. Medical advice is needed from your healthcare professional when taking any kinds of supplements and medications. 

Allergic Reactions. People who are allergic to seafood and shellfish are advised to consult their healthcare professional before using glucosamine and chondroitin as a supplement. People may experience allergic reactions which include rashes and difficulty in breathing and therefore, should be considered as a medical emergency. 

Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs).  Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory Drugs or NSAIDs along with glucosamine can have interactions which could affect the dosing needed for anti-inflammatory activity and might pose adverse side effects associated with the drugs. It is safe for people to visit their doctor for the right medical advice with their supplement use and medications.

Surgery. Keep in mind that you should stop using chondroitin and glucosamine supplements at least two weeks before a scheduled surgery because it might increase bleeding. It is also advised not to use it after your surgery. You should consult your healthcare provider when it comes to your medications. 

Anticoagulants. Do not take chondroitin and glucosamine supplements along with anticoagulants or blood thinning medications such as warfarin, heparin, edoxaban, rivaroxaban and others since it may increase bruising and bleeding. It is better to seek medical advice from your healthcare professional if you are planning to take supplements. 

Hypoglycemic Agents. Avoid using glucosamine and hypoglycemic agents together since there are researches that suggest taking glucosamine supplements may lower glucose levels. So, it is very important for patients with hypoglycemia or diabetes to be monitored with their medications. 

Disclaimer: The vitamin health information published on this web page is solely intended for educational purposes. VitaminsOnly strongly recommends to consult health care professionals for any questions concerning your health.

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