🧪PRODUCT TYPE: Joint Support Supplement
🥄SERVINGS: As shown above in product pictures.
🏋🏻♂OVERVIEW: Many people deal with chronic joint pain in their knees, hands, elbows, shoulders, and elsewhere. In most cases, this is caused by the most common type of arthritis, osteoarthritis. There are also dozens of supplements that claim to treat joint pain, but which ones actually work? Here’s a look at 9 of the best options and what the existing research says about them:
Glucosamine is natural component of cartilage, a substance that prevents bones from rubbing against each other and causing pain and inflammation. It might also help prevent the cartilage breakdown that can happen with arthritis. When taken over a long period of time, glucosamine sulfate may also help to slow down the progression of osteoarthritis.
Try it: Glucosamine sulfate is typically taken once daily in a dose of 1,500 milligrams (mg). If this upsets your stomach, try spreading it out over three doses of 500 mg each.
Like glucosamine, chondroitin is a building block of cartilage. It may also help prevent cartilage breakdown from osteoarthritis. Joint supplements often combine chondroitin with glucosamine. Chondroitin is typically taken in a dose of 400 to 800 mg two or three times per day.
S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAMe) is a supplement commonly used to help with symptoms of depression and osteoarthritis. Your liver naturally produces SAMe from an amino acid called methionine. It has several functions, including helping the production and repair of cartilage.When taken as a supplement, SAMe can help with symptoms of joint pain caused by osteoarthritis.
Try it: SAMe is usually taken in doses of 200 to 400 mg three times per day. Keep in mind that it may take some time to notice results.
Turmeric is one of the most popular supplements for treating pain, including joint pain caused by osteoarthritis. Its pain-relieving effects are attributed to a chemical compound in turmeric called curcumin. Curcumin seems to have anti-inflammatory effects.
Try it: Turmeric is usually taken in a dose of 500 mg two to four times daily.
Boswellia, also known as Indian frankincense, is commonly used for pain caused by arthritis. Chemicals in this extract called boswellia acids have anti-inflammatory effects.
Try it: Studies looking at the use of boswellia for joint pain have used doses ranging from 100 mg once per day to 333 mg three times per day.6. Avocado-soybean unsaponifiables
Avocado-soybean unsaponifiables (ASUs) refer to a type of extract from avocado and soybean oils that might help prevent the breakdown of cartilage. It may also help to repair cartilage.
Try it: The typical dose of ASU is 300 mg per day.
Devil's claw, also called harpagophytum, contains a chemical called harpogoside that has anti-inflammatory effects.
Try it: Most studies involving devil’s claw have used doses of 600 to 800 mg three times per day.
8. Fish oil
Fish oil contains the omega-3 fatty acids docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid, which have anti-inflammatory effects.
Try it: Typical fish oil doses range from 300 to 1,000 mg per day.
Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is another common ingredient in supplements said to help with joint pain.
Try it: Typical MSM doses range from 1,500 to 6,000 grams per day, sometimes divided into two doses.
Choosing a supplement for joint pain can be overwhelming with the number of products available. Many of these products contain multiple ingredients. Keep in mind that a long ingredient list doesn’t always make for a better product.
In some cases, added ingredients don’t have any proven benefits for joint health. Others might contain multiple beneficial ingredients, such glucosamine and chondroitin. But there’s not much proof that taking supplements containing multiple ingredients is more effective than taking a single ingredient. Plus, some of these products have too little of one or more ingredients for them to be beneficial.
Before choosing a supplement, talk with your doctor or pharmacist about other medications you’re taking so they can check for potential interactions. Some joint health supplements can interact with certain medications, such as blood thinners.