Glucosamine is a sugar produced in the body. It is best known for preventing and reversing joint damage related to osteoarthritis. It plays a very important role in maintaining cartilage in the body, the gel-like material that cushions joints, and is found to speed the healing of soft tissue injuries as well.
Although some foods contain small amounts of Glucosamine, there is no readily available source. As a result, supplements in the form of tablets, capsules, creams and injections have become widely available. Injections are recommended because they ensure maximum absorption. Some of Glucosamine’s uses include:
Relief of osteoarthritis-related pain, stiffness and swelling
Slow and possibly halt osteoarthritis-related damage to joints
Speed healing of strains and sprains
Control back pain
Promotion of healthy aging
Results will take anywhere from three to eight weeks, with the shots given weekly.
Glucosamine’s effectiveness may be improved by taking it along with an oral supplement such as chondroitin sulfate, another compound which may affect cartilage. Glucosamine supplements can safely be combined with conventional pain relievers such as acetaminophen and aspirin.