We know: All About Glucosamine and Chondroitin

What are glucosamine and chondroitin?

Glucosamine and chondroitin are natural substances found in and around the cells of cartilage. Glucosamine is made synthetically or from the outer shells of shellfish. Chondroitin is made from cow or shark cartilage.

What do researchers think these substances do for the human body?

Researchers believe these substances may help in the repair and maintenance of cartilage. In addition, researchers believe that glucosamine inhibits inflammation and stimulates cartilage cell growth, while chondroitin provides cartilage with strength and resilience.

Are these drugs or supplements?

Currently, glucosamine and chondroitin are classified as dietary supplements and can be purchased over-the-counter without a prescription.

What is a dietary supplement?

A dietary supplement is a product intended to supplement the diet, which bears or contains one or more of the following dietary ingredients: a vitamin, mineral, amino acid, herb, or other botanical; is intended for ingestion in the form of a capsule, powder, softgel, or gelcap; and is not represented as a conventional food or as a sole item of a meal or the diet.

Why do people take glucosamine and chondroitin?

Many people believe that these supplements can help can reduce pain and improve the problems caused by osteoarthritis.

What is osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis, also called degenerative joint disease, is caused by the breakdown of cartilage, which is the connective tissue that cushions the ends of bones within the joint. It is characterized by pain, joint damage, and limited motion.

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