Glucosamine is believed to contain many health benefits. Although much study is still needed about its true effects, it has shown to be very beneficial in animal use for many years. Glucosamine is produced naturally in the body and is believed to help various joints located through out the body. As we age, our cartilage naturally deteriorates often causing pain and stiffness in the joints. Glucosamine may relieve these symptoms naturally. Glucosamine is believed to produce anti inflammatory effects, allowing it to reduce joint pain and improving joint function.
Glucosamine is a natural compound found in healthy cartilage through out the body. In the United States, Glucosamine is an amino acid often sold as a dietary supplement. There are three forms of Glucosamine available and are often the most used. These three forms are Glucosamine HCI, Glucosamine Sulfate Sodium, and Glucosamine Sulfate Potassium.
Glucosamine use is believed to benefit Chronic Venus Insufficiency. This syndrome causes many irritating conditions in the legs, such as leg swelling, pain, and various veins. Even though there is no solid evidence to support these claims, Glucosamine still remains used for the treatment of skin changes, itching, and skin ulcers associated with this syndrome.
Probably the most well known benefit associated to Glucosamine use is the osteoarthritis benefits it appears to contain. This is believed to be true especially in osteoarthritis of the knee. Glucosamine has been noted to relieve mild to moderate pain of the knee caused from osteoarthritis. Many people report Glucosamine relieves pain and swelling in joints afflicted with rheumatoid arthritis as well.
There are many other natural health benefits believed to be associated to Glucosamine use. Many believe it may treat leg pain caused from advanced lumbar degeneration disc disease if it is injected. Glucosamine may improve the flexibility in the knee after suffering an injury. Reports have been made that Glucosamine benefits Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Crohns Disease and Ulcerative Colitis are other conditions believed to benefit from Glucosamine. Glucosamine may improve cartilage resiliency and prevent tendon and muscle injuries. It has been used for the treatment of tendonitis as well.
As with most herbs, Glucosamine may produce unwanted side effects like vomiting, nausea, and stomach pain. Constipation, diarrhea, and heart burn have been associated with Glucosamine use. Side effects of use can also include fatigue, head ache, and difficulty sleeping. Side effects can become more severe to include lose of appetite, swelling of the ankles, and a rapid heart beat. If the Glucosamine is injected, a rash may develop around the injection site.
“Glucosamine” MayoClinic.com, December 30, 2008
“Glucosamine and Chondroitin Information” Ray Sahelian, M.D. 2008