As we age, our bodies tend to produce less glucosamine. Taking a glucosamine supplement can therefore be a great support in maintaining healthy cartilage and joint function.
Benefits & Uses
Glucosamine is a natural component of healthy joints. It is derived from glucose and the amino acid glutamine, and although our bodies produce this naturally, our capacity to do so declines with age.
Glucosamine sulphate is the most common form of glucosamine found in supplements. It is derived from shellfish but can be found naturally occurring in animal bones, bone marrow and fungi. Vegetarian and vegan glucosamine usually comes in the form of glucosamine hydrochloride and is derived from non GMO corn. Supplements come in tablet, capsule, powder and liquid form so will cater for all preferences and requirements.
Glucosamine helps to support the maintenance of healthy cartilage, healthy joint mobility and joint wear and tear. Whether it’s a result of aging or over-use, glucosamine can support the loss of function of stressed and tired joints.
Supplementing with glucosamine can also support healthy tendons and ligaments, support bone repair, movement and can to help to cushion the joints. In supplement form, glucosamine is usually accompanied by chondroitin, another naturally occurring substance that supports joint health.
Glucosamine sulphate is in a different category to sulphur drugs and sulphate-containing foods, and will not cause a reaction in people with sulphate allergies. Because glucosamine is usually sourced from shellfish shells, people with shellfish allergies should naturally avoid these products. A vegetarian supplement is available (manufactured using no animal product).
People with unstable blood sugar conditions are advised to consult a health practitioner before taking a glucosamine supplement.
While it’s widely known that glucosamine supports joint health, glucosamine also provides benefits to skin health. Studies have shown that glucosamine has positive effects on supporting skin hydration, skin healing and supports the aging process due to its stimulation of hyaluronic acid synthesis.
It’s thought that the reason glucosamine is so beneficial for joint support is through its potent antioxidant properties. It has the ability to scavenge free radicals that can lead to cell damage.