Easing the Pain of Arthritis Naturally
What is Glucosamine?
Glucosamine, together with a related ingredient called Chondroitin, are substances which exist naturally in your body. It is believed that glucosamine helps to build and repair cartilage (the soft, spongy material between your joints), while chondroitin lends to the elasticity and flexibility of joints. A deficiency of either one can lead to increased wear and tear on the joint, and cause redness, swelling and stiffness as a result. When used together, glucosamine and chondroitin act as a tag-team of arthritis fighters, improving flexibility, soothing inflammation and reducing swelling caused by achy joints.
Where Can I Buy Glucosamine and Chondroitin Supplements?
You can find these products in virtually any pharmacy or health goods store. But youll need to do a little bit of research to find the best, most potent brand for your needs.
Heres what you need to know when comparison shopping for a glucosamine supplement:
Read the ingredients label on the bottle to determine the dosage. Approximately 1500mg of glucosamine and 1200mg of chondroitin have been safely used in clinical trials. Depending on your individual medication tolerances and the severity of your arthritis, you should consult your physician or rheumatologist to find the right dose for your individual needs.
Select supplements manufactured by a well-known, reputable company. Recommended brands include: Health Perception, Solgar, Viridian,
Are There Any Side Effects I Should Know About?
As with any medication or supplements, there are a few warnings you should know:
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, do not use glucosamine/chondroitin supplements, as no long-term studies have been done to gage what materials (if any) are passed on to the baby either internally or through breast milk.
If you are diabetic, chondroitin (a form of sugar) may cause your blood sugar to rise.
Chondroitin also acts as a mild blood thinner. Therefore, if you are taking any heart medication or are taking an aspirin regimen, have your blood clotting time checked more frequently by your doctor.