Glucosamine Chondroitin? Any hard evidence that they work in "lubricating" joint issue?

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    Sep 03, 2007 4:14 AM GMT
    Just curious if the great number of personal trainers/CMT/medical guys here have opinions on using Glucosamine chondroitin as a way of staving off joint issues.

    I've been using it for a couple of years...and, frankly, can't tell if it is helping. My doc, who does believe in some non-traditional treatments, says that there is mixed evidence that this stuff helps at all.

    Any thoughts from anyone who either has used it and/or professionals who might have an opinion will be greatly appreciated.

    John
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    Sep 03, 2007 4:21 AM GMT
    I tried it and it did nothing for me. MSM, however, seems to work very well.
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    Sep 03, 2007 4:22 AM GMT
    Thanks, OW. What is MSM?
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    Sep 03, 2007 4:32 AM GMT
    It's often combined with glucosamine-chondoritin. I have no idea why it, alone, seems to work (and rapidly) for me. I've heard the same thing from others about the g/c.

    Maybe it's like cranio-sacral therapy. :D

    http://www.glucosamine-arthritis.org/glucosamine/MSM.html
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    Sep 03, 2007 4:32 AM GMT
    I've been trying it for about 9 months, (it's cheap, at costco) but can't really tell if there are any effects. The studies I've found are pretty inconclusive and poorly designed. But my knees went to hell when I was 17, I'll grasp at little straws.
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    Sep 03, 2007 4:49 AM GMT
    Sorry, I was referring to the glucosamine, not the MSM, although in fact, I am using the stuff that contains both.
    BTW: I find that link about MSM to be a bunch of chemically-illiterate babble. (sorry.) Interestingly, MSM is very similar (though less polar) than a compound that is commonly used to inhibit archaea. No archaea are known to be human pathogens, except for some controversial scanadanivan research that implicates them in kidney stones. (Personally, I find it unconvincing, and I have shared beer with the authors.)
    BTW: Another weird undocumented observation. DMSO (another related compound) is purified from pulp mill waste. My brother's company (hard hat divers) were somehow talked into diving in the waste ponds that fed the original DMSO distillery. (The dopes.) Not only did it dissolve their suits, but some of them developed arthritis-like symptoms, temporarily.

    Conclusion: maybe there's something going on there, but nobody really knows what it is.
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    Sep 03, 2007 4:56 AM GMT
    I didn't even read it. It was the first site to come up when I googled.

    Here's one with more babble, including lots of cited research that likely has nothing to do with anything:

    http://www.msmguide.com/index.html
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    Sep 03, 2007 5:07 AM GMT
    All I can say is that my sister took it (college soccer player) to relieve her knees, and it helped her significantly.
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    Sep 03, 2007 5:08 AM GMT
    Really OW, and here I thought you actually read the articles and only passed on the good ones!
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    Sep 03, 2007 5:29 AM GMT
    I thought it raised your blood pressure.

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    Sep 03, 2007 5:29 AM GMT
    I already knew there weren't reliable studies on MSM. If it's a placebo, it's a very good one for me; it works amazingly quickly -- and I don't even take the high dose they recommend. It's magic.

    I read a report of a study the other day that said vitamin supplementation is a waste of money and swallowing too. But I'm still taking my one-a-day.

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    Sep 03, 2007 3:54 PM GMT
    I've tried Glucosamine-Chondritin off and on for several years and have come to the conclusion that it really doesn't do much, at least for me. My knee problem (secondary to years of running 50+ miles per week for years) really did not improve significantly until I started taking Diclofenac (prescription only), a mild NSAID, then I dropped the G-C and did not notice any difference at all.

    /www.drugs.com/pdr/diclofenac-sodium.html>
  • DenveRyk

    Posts: 167

    Sep 03, 2007 7:03 PM GMT
    I've used G-C for a few years now, because I was getting aches in the backs of my hands. Being a part-time weave, it was a real problem. The G-C really seemed to help, and that was confirmed for me when I decided to stop using it for a while to see what would happen. Sure enough, the ache returned.

    Now I have a touch of arthritis in the big toe of my left foot, and get relief with accupuncture and Fish Oil. In a few more weeks, when I have been using the fish oil for a while, I will once again cut out the G-C to see if the fish oil alone helps with the pain relief. But so far, I am happy with the entire combination!
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Sep 05, 2007 4:10 AM GMT
    Fast,

    I just started taking Fast Flex by GNC 2 weeks ago. It is a combination pack of 5 pills twice a day. I will let you know. It had white willow bark in the combination and said it would help speed the relief. My ex was into nutrition alot more than me, she recommended a combination. We'll see. (30 day regimine.)

    Mike
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Sep 06, 2007 5:35 AM GMT
    Also I don't think it is a quick fix thing- Look at how long your joints took to get burnt out. I would imagine it would take some time to repair as well.

    MSM= Methylsulfonylmethane organic sulfur.

    Hope it works!
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    Sep 07, 2007 2:53 AM GMT
    I use Triflex by GNC - has done wonders for me.
  • Timbales

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    Sep 17, 2007 11:20 AM GMT
    My bf uses a supplement that is glucosamine & chondroitin with msm and he says it's really worked for him. His knees are really wrecked and used to get up with them all stiff every morning. It took about 2 weeks for it to really kick in.
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    Sep 17, 2007 1:15 PM GMT
    Thanks all for your opinions. I am now off Glucosamine Chondroitin and am trying MSM. I'll let you know.

    Right now, I can't tell, because I fell while running on trails and twisted my left knee pretty badly, ending up with a mild/moderate sprain. It's coming back slowly. After all is well there, I'll be able to tell if the MSM is doing anything.

    John
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    Sep 17, 2007 1:46 PM GMT
    Here are some tips on MSM: it's is a lot cheaper when purchased in bulk powder form. However, the stuff is extremely bitter tasting. And, after mixing it in everything from pure maple syrup to applesauce, I finally found the perfect mixer for it. Water. One teaspoon of MSM dissolved in one quart of water has no bitter taste.
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    Oct 18, 2007 2:59 AM GMT
    My boyfriend had very good results with glucosamine and chondrontin. He had arthritis so bad in one finger that the tip of his finger was bent. After about 6 months on the combo, his finger totally straightened out.
  • Salubrious

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    Oct 18, 2007 3:07 AM GMT
    I believe studies have shown that it works to relieve joint pain if applied topically but it's inconclusive as a dietary supplement.
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    Oct 18, 2007 3:18 AM GMT
    Here's my own point of view. Highly subjective, but it's true that I have perceived a sense of more elasticity in my joints since I went on MSM. This was not true with glucosamine chondroitin.

    Since I am still recovering from knee issues related to a fall that I had on a trail run, it's still too soon to report how this is affecting my running.

    But my subjective impression is: Yes on MSM; No on Glucosamine Chondroitin.

    John
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Oct 18, 2007 6:26 AM GMT
    Fast- I have been taking Fast Flex by GNC since 8/20/07. I do feel less stiffness when I run and workout. I found MSM cream by Source Naturals as well. I just started tonight so not sure about it yet. I will continue on Fast Flex or Tri Flex and see if it continues to help.

    mike3
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    Nov 19, 2007 9:21 PM GMT
    Just an update on this: I'm closing in on the bottom of my second Costco bottle of this stuff, which ought to mean I've been using it for about 500 days.

    For the last few weeks, I've been noticing a definite improvement in my knees. Going deep on knee movements, my face keeps getting ready to wince, but the pain doesn't come! Maybe a little ordinary muscle stiffness, but not much arthritis pain so far this winter.

    It might be due to the glucosamine, or it might have something to do with doing a lot more road work this summer, than in recent years.

    I guess I'll buy another bottle.
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    Dec 02, 2007 3:45 PM GMT
    Hi Guys,
    I've been taking GC for about 4 years now. No conclusive evidence that it works, BUT I do have some faith in it. I am 53, and run about 15 miles a week. I do squats and other leg exercises that stress the knees. I get tight hamstrings and calves because of all that, but I have yet to experience any joint or knee pain. So I keep it up.