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|How Glucosamine and Chondroitin Benefits Your Joint Health |
Glucosamine is a compound which occurs naturally in our body and is produced in the joint cartilage. It is composed of glucose molecules and a type of amino acid called glutamine. Glucosamine is responsible in the production of lubricants and shock absorbers in our joints and is the precursor to a molecule called glycosaminoglycan which is required for the maintenance of healthy cartilage and joint functions. Glycosaminoglycan protects our joints by repairing damaged cartilage and buiding new ones.
It also cushions our joints, lessens inflammation of the joints and relieves pain caused by osteoarthritis. As we grow older, our body produces glycosaminoglycan at a rate which is slower than the rate it is being depleted. This is because the production of its precursor, glucosamine declines as we age. That is why it is necessary for older people to take glucosamine supplements to help replenish the glucosamine that is produced at a slower rate in their body. Glucosamine supplements are also taken by athletes and people who suffer from joint injuries. Glucosamine supplements are derived from natural sources such as shells of shellfish and for those who are allergic to shellfish, there are also glucosamine produced from fermented corn.
Chondroitin is another molecule which occurs naturally in our body and is a major component of the cartilage. It also plays a part in the production of glycosaminoglycan in our joints. Chondroitin absorbs fluid into our connective tissues to keep our cartilage healthy. That is why it is very important for us to drink enough water because if there isn't enough fluid present in our body then chondroitin cannot function properly. Chondroitin gives the cartilage its elasticity and protects the cartilage from being damaged by destructive enzymes by neutralizing them. Chondroitin is also used to reduce the symptoms brought upon by osteoarthritis. Chondroitin supplements are derived from natural sources like cartilages of whales, sharks and bovine with bovine as the preferred source.
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