Not all glucosamine is equal
If you have arthritis or joint pain there is a good chance that a friend, relative, or doctor suggests glucosamine. Glucosamine can be very effective for some people, while other people don’t believe it works. Part of the reason people get different responses to it is because of the type of glucosamine they’re using. It is either the sulfate or hydrochloride form.
That’s right, not all glucosamine is the same.
There are two different forms:
- Glucosamine Sulfate Potassium (GSP)
- Glucosamine Hydrochloride (GHCl)
And unfortunately, not many people know the difference. At Flexcin, we study joint pain remedies extensively. We put together some information on Glucosamine in plain English that should help significantly when you’re looking for the right remedy.
What Is Glucosamine?
Glucosamine is a natural occurring chemical compound in the body. It is often found in joint supplements as an ingredient to help relieve arthritis pain. It’s probably the most well-known component of joint supplements. It is so well-known that many joint supplements are just known as “glucosamine.” Unfortunately, your body’s natural glucosamine levels fall as you age. This can lead to a slow breakdown of the joint compounds. So this weakens your joints and causes joint pain. Glucosamine is also important because it contributes to cartilage formation and joint lubrication. So, getting a joint supplement with glucosamine is a good thing. However, there are two types of glucosamine you can get, and the differences between them can be great.
Glucosamine Sulfate Potassium
Glucosamine sulfate potassium (GSP) is the most common type of glucosamine found on the market and is the one most often found in animal and human study trials. It is taken from the shells of shellfish and can also be made in a lab. The body uses GSP to make a variety of other chemicals that are for the construction of cartilage, ligaments, tendons, and a thick fluid that is found around the joints. Taking a supplement with GSP may increase the cartilage or fluid around the joints and may stop or slow the breakdown of these substances.
The way to stabilize Glucosamine sulfate potassium is with sodium chloride, also known as table salt. The sulfate part of GSP is the most important component. Sulfur is necessary for building and repairing cartilage. GSP is shown to work as well or better than some non-prescription pain medications. And, it is said to improve movement and reduce pain levels. Another advantage of GSP is that there is some evidence that shows that using this component in a joint supplement may actually keep joint problems from progressing.*
Sulfur vs Sulfa
Many people confuse , sulfur and sulfa. However, these elements are not the same thing. Allergies to drugs containing sulfa are very common. This often worries some people about sulfur in joint supplement products. However, sulfa drugs combine sulfur, oxygen, nitrogen, and hydrogen, and trigger allergies from the actions of the molecule, not the sulfur. It is actually impossible to be allergic to sulfur. Sulfur is a chemical element found in sulfites, sulfates, and sulfa drugs. It is an indispensable element for functions of the human body.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) states “The most research showing benefit is for products that contain glucosamine sulfate. Products that contain glucosamine hydrochloride do not seem to work as well.” (Source: medlineplus.gov)
Glucosamine hydrochloride (GHCl) has less evidence available showing its effectiveness. It is also found in the shells of shellfish. Unlike Glucosamine sulfate potassium it lacks the sulfate component. This is the element your body needs to produce and maintain cartilage. Glucosamine HCl contains much less sodium. GHCl is often times found with chondroitin in hopes for better results. However, current findings in trials and research do not support this.
The NIH site Glucosamine HCl as offering “little benefit to those suffering from osteoarthritis” (Source: NIH.gov). It also notes that there are few studies of glucosamine HCL in humans.
Differences Between the Two
Both glucosamine sulfate potassium and glucosamine hydrochloride are found in joint supplements that help reduce pain, inflammation, and increase joint health. The major differences between to the two are:
- Glucosamine sulfate potassium contains the sulfur the body requires for building and repairing cartilage. Glucosamine HCl does not.
- The research on glucosamine HCl is not substantial, while glucosamine sulfate is clinically shown to improve joint health.
According to additional research by the NIH, “The use of glucosamine in the management of osteoarthritis is supported by the clinical trials as performed with the original prescription product, that is, crystalline glucosamine sulfate. This is the stabile form of glucosamine sulfate, while other formulations or different glucosamine salts (e.g. hydrochloride) has not shown to be effective. (Source: NIH.gov)
As a result, many times people pick up a “glucosamine supplement,” but it’s not the right kind and the results are sub-par. If you’re looking for a supplement with glucosamine, we highly recommend getting a supplement with GSP.
Studies suggest that GSP may work in treating and slowing the progression of osteoarthritis and other joint issues. It’s crucial to know what types of ingredients are in your supplements. At Flexcin we hand pick our components for efficacy and quality. Our ingredient choices are from years of research and formula evolution.
On top of using glucosamine, Flexcin also uses CM8 (Cetyl Myristoleate). Cetyl myristoleate is a natural compound. A researcher at the National Institutes of Health found it. It is beneficial for the treatment of arthritis.* There are three patents for the treatment of arthritis by Cetyl Myristoleate. And, it is the only compound with patents for arthritis treatment. You can read more about this compound at http://cetyl-myristoleate.com
If you’re looking for a joint supplement we invite you to take a look at Flexcin. It’s made from natural ingredients, in the USA, and has a full money-back guarantee. Learn more at www.flexcin.com
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