Supplements And Vitamins For Arthritis
There are a large number of vitamins, minerals, and herbs that are thought to help people manage their arthritis symptoms, but some of them are not supported by science. Here, we take a closer look at supplements and vitamins thought to aid people with arthritis and whether there is research to support those claims.
Health Benefits And Risks
The Arthritis Foundation states that some supplements may relieve pain, stiffness, and other symptoms of arthritis. It also suggests using supplements alongside arthritis drugs, not as a substitute. Medications are the only scientifically proven treatment to slow joint damage.
Furthermore, the AF highlights the importance of consulting a doctor before taking any supplements for arthritis. Some supplements may interact with other medications or cause side effects.
It is also of note that there is little research into the effectiveness of supplements.
Some supplements have different benefits than others. In the sections below, we list supplements and their possible benefits.
Are You Getting Enough Vitamin D
Your doctor can order blood tests to determine whether youre getting enough vitamin D, but here are a few more telltale signs of a deficiency:
- Chronic pain or aches that last for weeks, similar to symptoms associated with rheumatoid arthritis
- Melancholy or depressed mood
- Osteoporosis and brittle bones
- Fatigue and weakness that doesnt seem normal
- Excessive sweating, especially on your forehead
Maintaining an adequate vitamin D level is essential in the management of rheumatoid arthritis, says Elizabeth Ortiz, MD, assistant professor of clinical medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC and a rheumatologist at Keck Medicine of USC. It has been shown to help with pain control and may even be beneficial in controlling inflammation and disease activity.
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Glucosamine Sulphate And Chondroitin For Osteoarthritis
Many people take glucosamine sulphate tablets with or without added chondroitin for osteoarthritis. Cartilage contains substances related to glucosamine and chondroitin, and taking supplements of these natural ingredients may nourish damaged cartilage. Research results are mixed but suggest that some people will benefit from this therapy.
Research suggests glucosamine sulphate is more likely to be helpful than glucosamine hydrochloride. If you’re thinking of trying glucosamine we suggest taking 1500 mg per day of glucosamine sulphate. You may want to try glucosamine and chondroitin supplements for 3 months, and if your joint pain improves you can choose to continue with them.
If youre allergic to shellfish, there are vegetarian or shellfish-free forms of glucosamine available.
Glucosamine can increase the level of sugar in the blood, so if you have diabetes it would be useful to discuss glucosamine with your doctor before you start to take it. You should also speak with your doctor if your blood sugars seem to be rising after starting glucosamine.
If youre taking warfarin your blood-thinning control may be affected, so make sure you have your regular blood checks and discuss using glucosamine with your doctor.
The Dangers Of Too Much Vitamin C
In 2004, Duke researchers found that when patients with osteoarthritis consumed high amounts of vitamin C, they were more at risk for developing bone spurs and joint damage. This was due to a protein in the blood triggered by vitamin C. Because a vitamin C deficiency can put you at a higher risk of developing arthritis, its important to find the right balance.
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Who Should Consider A Supplement For Bone Or Joint Health
If you eat a balanced, healthy diet, you should be able to get all your nutrients from food, says Ilic. There are certain groups of people who may not get enough of certain nutrients, and taking supplements is appropriate. These include people with absorption problems, pregnant women and people with a poor diet.
If you take a supplement, talk to your doctor first to make sure you are taking one that you need and that wont adversely interact with any medications you take.
This article originally appeared in Cleveland Clinic Arthritis Advisor.
Are Arthritis Pain Supplements Safe And Effective
In terms of consumer safety, most arthritis pain supplements do not contain controlled substances or other prescription-strength medications. They are classified as food supplements, not medication. However, you should consult with your physicians before beginning a regimen of this type. Diabetics should be careful when using sugar-based ingredients such as glucosamine and chondroitin, and those with severe shellfish allergies should also use caution.
The effectiveness of arthritis pain supplements is a matter of debate. The beneficial effects may not appear for several months, as the body slowly begins to rebuild lost tissue or fluids. Anecdotal testimony from satisfied users indicates a noticeable degree of relief from pain and swelling, but these claims are not fully supported by scientific studies.
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Clinically Proven Joint Relief
Arthro-7 is proven to deliver relief from stiff, painful joints and low mobility. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled human study, over 74.5% of subjects reported experiencing a significant improvement in symptoms after 12 weeks.
Arthro-7 is formulated with naturally soothing and lubricating ingredients to support relief from joint pain, naturally.*
How To Choose A Joint Supplement For Your Dog
Each dog is different so are its nutritional needs. So when it comes to joint supplements, you should consider the following:
Youll be surprised by how much canine joint supplements differ in terms of ingredients. Many manufacturers also have their proprietary blends promising to improve your dogs joint mobility. The following are the most common ingredients youll find on many dog joint supplements:
Glucosamine. This is a naturally occurring compound thats been proven to boost cartilage growth. As you know, cartilage is the cushion between your dogs bones. When it thins, arthritis sets in. Glucosamine helps delay or at least manage it through its anti-inflammatory effects.
Chondroitin. You will usually see glucosamine paired with chondroitin. Also known as chondroitin sulfate, this substance fights off the chemicals that cause the bone cartilages thinning. So while glucosamine works, chondroitin acts as a layer of defense to prevent further damage on the joints.
Hyaluronic acid. Many joint supplements in the market nowadays are blended with hyaluronic acid. Its a naturally occurring substance on the connective tissue of a dogs joints. By boosting the supply of hyaluronic acid, your dog will have better joint mobility.
MSM. MSM or methylsulfonylmethane is a sulfur compound that serves as a preventive substance for the cartilage. It has natural anti-inflammatory benefits, which helps ease your dogs discomfort.
Tablet vs. chews
Mind the dose
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Common Ingredients In Arthritis Pain Supplements
The default ingredient list of many arthritis pain supplements includes glucosamine, chondroitin, and MSM. However, manufacturers are not restricted to these ingredients. Here is a list of potential ingredients which should be clearly displayed on product packaging.
GlucosamineGlucosamine is a natural substance produced by the human body. It is usually found in joint fluids, bone marrow, and shellfish. It helps with the repair of cartilage damaged by inflammation. It can raise blood sugar levels in diabetics but is generally considered safe. There is no established therapeutic dose.
ChondroitinChondroitin is similar on a molecular level to glucosamine and is also found naturally in human joint tissue. Several reputable studies link the use of chondroitin with significant relief from osteoarthritis pain. It has some blood-thinning properties, so users taking blood-thinning medications or certain cancer drugs should caution.
MSMMSM is naturally found in green plants, but it is also produced in the human body. It is often touted as a miracle supplement that can help with a wide variety of medical conditions. The primary function of MSM in arthritis pain supplements is to deliver beneficial sulfur to damaged tissues.
TurmericTurmeric is a spice with a number of claimed health benefits. It is commonly found in prepared mustards and Indian food. As a supplement, turmeric is considered to have anti-inflammatory properties.
Understanding Cat Joint Health
Normally, in healthy cats, the cartilage acts like a buffer that prevents bone friction and enables smooth gliding.
If the buffer is damaged or starts degenerating, the two bone surfaces forming the joint will rub from each other, resulting in pain and inflammation.
The pain is mostly accented when the cat is moving. In fact, joint health decline is the most common cause of reduced cat mobility.
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How To Shop For The Best Arthritis Supplements
As a customer, you have the right to be picky when choosing the right arthritis supplement for your cat.
According to Dr. Gary Richter, an award-winning vet and holistic practitioner, you should follow these guidelines:
- Search for a reputable brand that has commissioned clinical studies
- Read the labels carefully and if you have doubts, ask your veterinarian
- Pay attention to the brands confirmed expertise
- Make sure the product you chose has lot numbers
- Be skeptical when reading the claims on the product
- Always consult with your veterinarian before giving your cat something new
Can I Have Too Much Vitamin D
Taking more than 100 microgram of vitamin D as supplement a day can be harmful.
For most people, taking a 10 microgram vitamin D supplement every day will be enough.
Having too much vitamin D from a supplement over a long period of time, can lead to a build up of calcium in the body, a condition called hypercalcaemia. This can weaken bones and can be bad for the heart and kidneys.
If you have any concerns, you should consult a doctor.
Its not possible to get too much vitamin D from sunlight, but you should avoid the risk of getting sunburnt by covering up if you are out in the sunshine for long periods. Sunburn can increase the likelihood of developing skin cancer later in life.
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Who Should Avoid Supplements And Vitamins
Supplements are not a good idea for people with some kinds of health conditions. They also can keep some medications from working as well as they should. Always talk with your doctor before you add any to your diet. People who should avoid certain types include:
- Pregnant or breastfeeding women, because some supplements can be dangerous to the baby. A daily prenatal vitamin has the right types and amounts of nutrients for these women.
- People who take heart medications, diuretics, blood thinners, aspirin, drugs that turn down the immune system, and steroids. With any type of drug, theres always a chance that it wont mix well with a supplement, but the problems can be especially severe with some of these drugs.
- People who are going to have surgery, because some products may lead to bleeding and other dangerous complications.
- People whove had cancer or are getting treated for it. Some supplements could help cancer cells grow or make treatments for the disease less effective.
Vitamin And Mineral Guide For Arthritis
Learn about key vitamins and minerals and which ones are especially important when you have arthritis.
Vitamins and minerals play a critical role in staying healthy, but getting enough of certain nutrients is even more important when you have arthritis. This guide provides thorough research of key vitamins and minerals to help you figure out what you may be missing. But remember: While some supplements may help arthritis symptoms, nothing can substitute doctor-prescribed medications, a healthy diet and exercise. Always talk to your doctor before adding a new supplement, vitamin or mineral to your regimen. Just because something is natural doesnt mean it cant cause side effects or interact with medications. For more tips on choosing safe supplements, read this article.
What it does: Calcium is an essential mineral thatmaintains strong bones and teeth regulates muscle contractions transmits nerve impulses and helps release essential hormones and enzymes. It also helps prevent osteoporosis and fractures, which are higher risks among people with rheumatoid arthritis and those taking corticosteroids.
How much:Experts recommend 1,200 mg a day for healthy adults, but people with inflammatory arthritis may need more up to 1,500 mg for men and postmenopausal women. Recent research has debunked the claim that calcium supplements raise heart attack risk.
Too much:Tolerable upper limit = 2,500 mg.
Too much:No tolerable upper limit has been determined.
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Joint Problems In Older Dogs
Older dogs are highly susceptible to various health problems, including joint issues. One of the most common is arthritis, which could also occur prematurely to younger canines.
Arthritis occurs due to trauma and accumulated damage to the joints. As your dog uses its joints to walk, run, and guard your yard, the cartilage thins slowly. Over the years, the cartilage will be gone, which will cause the bones to rub with each other and the surrounding ligaments and tissues.
However, arthritis can also be developmental, which means your dog is born with a high predisposition to the condition. Large guard dogs like Bullmastiff and Rottweiler are prone to arthritis later due to their heavier bodies. Also, these dogs are active, which will take its toll on their joints.
On the other hand, small dogs can also acquire arthritis. Obesity and excessive physical activities will cause more stress to their small joints.
Just like humans, any dog can develop arthritis later in life. What you need to do is to have it diagnosed as early as possible. This way, you and the vet can work together to improve your dogs quality of life.
Top 5 Joint Health Supplements Of 2021
Based on our own extensive research, the metrics provided by our Smarter Reviews Ranking System, and consideration of numerous reviews by Smarter Shoppers just like you, we’ve compiled a list of what we’ve found to be the top five products in this category, on the market today.
- Ingredient SafetyWe check each and every product ingredient against ingredient safety databases to determine the ingredients proper dosage limits and ultimate safety, as well as banned substances.8.4 Avg.
- Projected EffectivenessWe compare the safe and effective active ingredient dosages established by independent clinical studies and medical databases with those found on the product labeling to measure the projected effectiveness of the product.8.2 Avg.
- ValueWe add the active ingredients, subtract the fillers and compare that to the products price to assess the value youre getting for your money.8.3 Avg.
- Return PolicyWe assess and rank the return policy by testing the actual product return process against the brands return policy.7.8 Avg.
- Customer SatisfactionCustomer satisfaction rankings are provided by Smarter Reviewers who share their ranking or review based on personal experience with a product displayed on Smarter Reviews.7.9 Avg.
- Type XIV Eggshell Membrane Collagen
- Type II Collagen
- No binders, fillers, or synthetic ingredients
- Formulated by a respected medical doctor
- Formulated with a lipid layer
- 90-day, risk-free, money-back, product guarantee
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What To Look For
Dietary supplements are not strictly regulated in the United States, making it difficult to know which brands are reliable and which are not.
One sign of quality is a stamp of approval from the U.S. Pharmacopeia, NSF International, or ConsumerLab. These independent certifying bodies are tasked with ensuring that the ingredients listed on a product label are correct and pure. Only supplements voluntarily submitted for testing are eligible for certification.
Always read ingredient labels to check for substances that you may be sensitive to, including gluten and other common allergens. If you don’t recognize something listed, ask your pharmacist about it.
If you are allergic to poultry or eggs, opt for brands marked “vegan” or “vegan-friendly.” You will also want to check that softgels are made with vegetable-based gelatin.
Hyaluronic acid supplements can be stored in the refrigerator, but can keep just as well in a cool, dry room. Discard any product that has expired or shows signs of moisture damage or deterioration.
Buying Guide For Best Supplements For Arthritis Pain
Arthritis pain sufferers often seek relief through prescription or over-the-counter analgesics, steroids, anti-inflammatory drugs, and heat therapy. While these treatments may be effective in the short term, they can be expensive over time. Some treatments, such as cortisone injections, can actually accelerate tissue deterioration. A popular homeopathic alternative is the arthritis pain supplement. These supplements often include sugar-derived ingredients such as glucosamine and/or chondroitin as well as a sulfur-based product called MSM .
Because supplements targeted at arthritis pain are considered food products and not medication, there are no FDA standards. Some contain therapeutic levels of vitamins or minerals others rely heavily on unregulated ingredients like glucosamine and chondroitin. We offer an in-depth discussion of the benefits and potential drawbacks of arthritis pain supplements in this detailed guide.
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Supplement And Herb Guide For Arthritis Symptoms
Learn about popular supplements for arthritis and how they may help with symptoms.
Interested in supplements to ease arthritis symptoms but dont know where to start? Youve come to the right place. This guide provides thorough research of the most popular supplements and herbs used for arthritis to help you figure out whats right for you. While some of these supplements may help treat arthritis symptoms, nothing can substitute doctor-prescribed medications, a healthy diet and exercise. And remember always talk to your doctor before adding a new supplement to your regimen. Just because something is natural doesnt mean its without side effects or safe to mix with your medication. For more tips on choosing safe supplements, read this article.
What The Numbers Mean
Many of the terms you see on labels or supplement web sites can help you understand how much of the vitamin or mineral you should take. For example, here are some guidelines set up by the Institute of Medicine:
The RDA and the AI are the amounts of a vitamin or mineral you need to keep healthy and stay well-nourished. They’re tailored to women, men, and specific age groups.
The UL is the maximum amount of daily vitamins and minerals that you can safely take without risk of an overdose or serious side effects. For certain nutrients, the higher you go above the UL, the greater the chance you’ll have problems.
The DV is the only measurement you’ll find on food and supplement labels. That’s because space is limited, and there’s a need for one single reference number. That number is the amount of a vitamin or nutrient that you should get for top health from a diet of 2,000 calories a day. The DV is sometimes the same as the RDA.
Although the details may be different, remember that the RDA and DV are both set up to help you get the nutrients you need to prevent disease and avoid problems caused by lack of nutrition.
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