Glucosamine & Chondroitin

Glucosamine sulphate & Chondroitin sulphate are substances already produced in very small amounts by the body. They provide the body with the raw materials that appear to have a significant impact in halting this osteoarthritis, without any known side effects. The amazing fact stands in stark contrast to painkillers such as cortisone injections and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID'S). They offer only temporary relief from the symptoms of osteoarthritis. Studies have shown NSAID'S are associated with increased joint destruction and acceleration of osteoarthritis.

In his bestseller book "The Arthritis Cure" , Dr. Jason Theodosakis, decribes this combination as the Medical Breakthrough that can Halt, Reverse & may even Cure Osteoarthritis. Used together, Glucosamine and Chondroitin sulphates enhance cartilage repair and improve joint function.


Glucosamine


Glucosamine is made up of glucose, the sugar that the body burns for fuel, and an amino acid called glutamine. It is an important part of the mucopolysacharides, which provide structure to the bone, cartilage, skin, nails, hair, and other body tissues. Glucosamine is a major building block of the water-loving proteoglycans. Specifically, it is needed to make the glycosaminglycans (GAG), proteins that bind water in the cartilage matrix.
Besides providing raw material for the synthesis of proteoglycans and GAGs, glucosamine acts as a stimulant to the cells that produce these products, the chondrocytes. In fact, glucosamine has been found to be the key factor in determining how many proteoglycans are produced by the chondrocytes. If there is a lot of glucosamine present, then a lot of proteoglycans will be produced, and lot of water will be held in its proper place.
Glucosamine has also been shown to spur the chondrocytes to produce more collagen, and it also normalises cartilage metabolism, which helps to keep the cartilage from breaking down.
Because glucosamine starts the production of these key elements of the cartilage matrix, and then protects them, it can actually help the body to repair damaged or eroded cartilage. In other words, glucosamine strengthens the body’s natural repair mechanisms.


Chondroitin


Where glucosamine helps to form the proteoglycans that sit within the spaces in the cartilage “netting”, chondroitin sulphates act like “liquid magnets”. Chondroitin is a long chain of repeating sugars, and as such helps to attract fluid into the proteoglycan molecules, which is important for two reasons:
The fluid acts as a spongy shock absorber.
The fluid sweeps nutrients into the cartilage. Articular cartilage has no blood supply, so all of its nourishment and lubrication comes from the liquid the ebbs and flows as pressure to the joint is applied and released. Without this fluid, cartilage would become malnourished, drier, thinner, and more fragile.
Chondroitins are found in most animal tissues, especially in the “gristle” around the joints. Some of the chondroitins we eat are absorbed into the body intact and incorporated into various tissues, including articular cartilage.
Besides drawing in precious fluid, chondroitin:
Protects existing cartilage from premature breakdown by inhibiting the action of certain cartilage destroying enzymes.
Interferes with other enzymes that attempt to “starve” cartilage by cutting off the transport of nutrients.
Stimulates the production of proteoglycans, glycosaminoglycans, and collagen, the cartilage matrix molecules that serve as building blocks for healthy new cartilage.
Works synergistically with glucosamine.
Supplemental chondroitin sulphates work very much like the naturally occurring chondroitins in the cartilage, thus protecting the old cartilage from premature breakdown and stimulating the synthesis of new cartilage.


The Synergy


In osteoarthritis, we have a two-fold problem:
The body does not produce enough proteoglycans and collagen, the building blocks needed to keep the cartilage healthy.
At the same time the “cartilage-chewing” enzymes are hard at work, destroying the working cartilage.
Working together synergistically, glucosamine and chondroitin sulphates stimulate the synthesis of new cartilage, while simultaneously keeping the cartilage-busting enzymes under control.

REFERENCES



1.  Theodosakis, Jason, Brenda Adderly and Barry Fox. 1997. The Arthritis Cure. New York. St. Martin's Press.
2.  Bucci, Luke R. 1995. Healing Arthritis the Natural Way.  Arlington, TX.      Summit Publishing Group.
3.  Weil, Andrew. 1997. 8 Weeks to Optimum Health. New York. Alfred A. Knopf.
4.  McIlwain, Harris, et al. 1997. Winning with Arthritis. New York. John Wiley & Sons. 
5.  Kandel, Joseph and David B. Sudderth.   1997. The Arthritis Solution.          Rocklin, CA.  Prima Publishing.
6.  Katzenstein, Larry. 1997. The Arthritis Solution.  New York.  Signet -            Penguin Putnam.
7.  Theodosakis, Jason Brenda Adderly and Barry Fox. 1998. Maximising the Arthritis Cure.  New York. St. Martin's Press.
8.    Jane E. Brody, The Arthritis Is at Bay, Thank You,  New York Times,       January 13, 1998, p. F9
9.   Bucci, Luke R.  1995.  Nutrition Applied to Injury Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine.   Boca Raton, FL.  CRC Press.                       
10. McCarty, M.F., The Neglect of Glucosamine as a Treatment for Osteoarthritis - A Personal Perspective.  Medical Hypotheses 42                323-327 (1994)
11. Mazieres, B. et al. Chondroitin sulphate in the treatment of gonarthrosis and coxarthrosis.  5-months result of a multicenter double-blind  controlled prospective study using placebo.  Rev. Rhum. Mal. Osteoartic. 59 (7-8)  466-472 (1992).  In French.
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13. Morreale, P.  et al. Comparison of the anti-inflammatory efficacy of             chondroitin sulphate and diclofenac sodium in patients with knee osteoarthritis.  J. Rheumatol.  23 (8) 1385-1391  (1996)
14.  Pujalte, J. M. et al. Double blind clinical evaluation of oral glucosamine sulphate in the basic treatment of osteoarthrosis.  Curr. Med. Res. Opin. 7 (2)  110-114  (1980)
15. Thilo, G.  A study of 35 cases of arthrosis treated with chondroitin sulphate.  Schweiz Rundsch. Med. Prax.  66 (52)  1696-1699  (1977).  In French.
16. Qiu, G. X.  Efficacy and safety of glucosamine sulphate versus ibuprofen in patients with knee osteoarthritis.  Arzneimittelforschung 48 (5) 469-474  (1998)
17. Pipitone, V. R. Chondroprotection with chondroitin sulphate. Drugs Exp. Clin. Res. 17 (1)   3-7 (1991)
18. Drovanti, A  et al. Therapeutic activity of oral glucosamine sulphate in         osteoarthritis: a placebo-controlled double-blind investigation.  Clin. Ther. 3 (4)  260-272  (1980)
19. Leeb, P. F. et al. Results of a multicenter study of chondroitin sulphate (Condrosulf) use in arthrosis of the finger, knee and hip joints. Wien Med. Wochenschr.  146 (24)  609-614  (1996).  In German.
20. Kelly, G.S.  The role of glucosamine sulphate and chondroitin sulphates  in the treatment of degenerative joint disease.  Altern. Med. Rev. 3 (1) 27-39 (1998)

 

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