GlucosamineGlucosamine is a compound found naturally in the body, made from glucose and the amino acid glutamine. It is in the fluid that is around joints. Glucosamine is an important precursor in the biosynthesis of cartilage. Specifically, it is a building block of proteogycans’-protein molecules with a content of bound carbohydrate. Proteoglycans and collagen compose the majority of the cartilage matrix. Proteoglycans are essential for healthy cartilage because they bind the water that lubricates and cussions the joint. Production of glucosamine slows with age.

In addition glucosamine is believed to play a role in regulating cartilage formation and normalising cartilage metabolism by encouraging higher production of collagen and proteoglycans. Glucosamine also stimulates synovial production of hyaluronic acid, which is responsible for the lubricating and shock absorbing properties of synovial fluid.

Numerous double-blind clinical studies have shown the efficacy of glucosamine supplements in maintaining healthy cartilage, healthy joints, and full range of motion in the short-term. “More recently, a three-year study was published showing that joint space increased in the glucosamine-treated group, while it continued to decrease in the placebo group indicating that the protective cartilage was better maintained in those who used glucosamine.” Additional studies have demonstrated that glucosamine taken orally, is well-absorbed and diffuses into tissues, including the articular cartilage.

Uses of Glucosamine:

There are no major food sources of glucosamine, so people who want to take it must take supplements.

Recommended Daily Intake: RDA


For osteoarthritis: Glucosamine sulfate or hydrochloride, 500 mg, 3 times daily, for 30 – 90 days. Once daily dosing as 1.5 g (1,500 mg) may also be used. – Source: UMM

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