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What are the Pros and Cons of Glucosamine for Joint Pain?

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  • Written By: Patti Kate
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 07 December 2016
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When taking glucosamine for joint pain, there are several pros and cons to consider, including improved bone and joint comfort and potential health risks. Some advantages of glucosamine for joint pain are said to be improved mobility, especially among osteoarthritis sufferers. Some patients report reduced inflammation. Conversely, some individuals who have consumed glucosamine have reported negative reactions or side effects. Allergic reactions in some individuals is one of the negative aspects of taking glucosamine.

Glucosamine is said to help restructure damaged muscle and joint cartilage. Damage to cartilage and joints may occur as a result of illness, disease, genetics, or natural aging process. When the joints become worn down due to any of these factors, everyday tasks can become painful. Walking or using one's hands may become increasingly difficult and painful for many people who have damaged joints.

As an alternative to surgery, many individuals elect to try various products and supplements to help improve their quality of life. Glucosamine is one such supplement, taken either in pill form or as a powder. Although studies have not been conclusive, and some medical experts believe there is no evidence to support such claims, many individuals report an improvement from taking glucosamine for joint pain.

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Taking glucosamine may have proven results for some, yet fail to work for others. Among the advantages of joint pain supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin are decreased swelling, inflammation, and pain. Many people report improved flexibility in the joints and a restored feeling of freedom and mobility to affected joints.

As with many types of supplements or medications, there is a downside to taking this type of supplemental treatment. One drawback is the possibility of an allergic reaction. There may be an increased risk for those individuals who are allergic to any type of shellfish. This is because glucosamine supplements are made with fish byproducts. In some rare cases, allergic reactions may produce severe or even life-threatening symptoms, such as respiratory failure or difficulty in breathing.

Another potential side effect from using glucosamine may a disturbance in blood glucose levels, particularly among diabetics. This subject, however, has incited controversy among physicians. Some medical experts believe that diabetics should not take glucosamine supplements, while others believe there is no conclusive evidence to back these claims.

Medical experts claim that taking glucosamine for joint pain in a very potent or high dose may put certain individuals at risk for developing health problems. One such concern is increased risk for diabetes. This concern is based on the notion that higher doses of this supplement may destroy cells that are necessary for pancreatic function, which regulates insulin to maintain healthy blood sugar levels.

While many people believe the advantages of taking glucosamine for joint pain outweigh any potential risks, it's best to use any supplement with caution and in moderation. Consuming high doses for an extended period of time may result in negative reactions and side effects. With this in mind, before using glucosamine to treat bone and joint ailments, it is recommended to seek the advice of a health care professional.

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fify
Post 3

The only downside to using glucosamine for joint pain is that it may not be safe for some people. It's not safe for pregnant woman or those allergic to shellfish. It may also be problematic for people with asthma or diabetes. Some glucosamine supplements are made from shells of lobsters, crabs and shrimp. So people with shellfish allergy need to steer clear.

SteamLouis
Post 2

@ddljohn-- Most glucosamine supplements come with MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) because MSM help glucosamine work better. MSM is a type of sulfur.

I take a glucosamine and MSM supplement for joint pain. It works quite well. It has reduced my pain greatly since I started taking it. If you can swallow pills, I'd actually recommend the pills. That's what I'm using. Creams may work, but I think they will be less effective since less of the active ingredients will be absorbed through skin.

ddljohn
Post 1

I've heard great things about glucosamine cream for joint inflammation and pain. But I'm having difficulty finding a cream that contains just glucosamine. Most creams have a combination of glucosamine, MSM and chondroitin. I think I'd like to try a glucosamine only product first before I try something else. I suffer from chronic knee pain.

Does anyone here use glucosamine cream for knee pain? Are you happy with the results?

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