Last updated on June 6th, 2023 at 06:49 pm
Chronic joint pain, such as in the knees, hands, elbows, and shoulders, is not rare. Often, osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis that affects almost one-quarter of people in the United States, is the culprit. Osteoarthritis is a “wear and tear arthritis” and occurs when the protective cartilage at the ends of your bones wears down over time. Osteoarthritis most commonly affects joints with weights such as the big toes, knees, hips, and spine. In this article, we will look at the best supplements to lessen joint pain.
Individuals who have experienced sports injuries are at a greater risk of joint degeneration. However, everyday activities wear down the joints, and if you are above healthy body weight, this wear and tear are added further. Having a healthy body weight is important to keeping healthy and joints with no more pain.
Stretching and strengthening exercises help to stabilize the joints, and aerobic exercise increases the spread of oxygen and nutrients to the joints, helping to keep them healthy. On the other hand, pain medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen are often used for joint pain relief, and many supplements on the market claim to treat joint pain.
Best Supplements For Eliminating Joint Pain
Glucosamine is a component of cartilage. Cartilage is connective tissue and serves an important structural role in the body. The cartilage between bones (at the joints) prevents bones from rubbing against each other, causing pain and inflammation. Glucosamine may also help prevent the failure of cartilage that can occur with arthritis.
Glucosamine found in supplements comes in two forms: glucosamine hydrochloride and glucosamine sulfate. Studies have shown that while glucosamine hydrochloride does not significantly impact joint pain caused by osteoarthritis, glucosamine sulfate does improve symptoms. Over a long period, glucosamine sulfate may even help slow the growth of osteoarthritis. Moreover, one way it may do this is by slowing down the narrowing of the joint space, which is a marker of the growth of osteoarthritis. Therefore, if you try a glucosamine supplement, ensure it contains glucosamine sulfate and not glucosamine hydrochloride.
Chondroitin is also an element of cartilage and may help prevent the failure of cartilage that occurs with osteoarthritis. Clinical studies have shown that chondroitin can decrease joint pain and stiffness from osteoarthritis. Like glucosamine, long-term chondroitin supplementation may slow the growth of osteoarthritis by making joint space small.
S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAMe) is one of the Joint Pain Supplements which is often used for both depression and osteoarthritis. SAMe is naturally produced by your liver from the amino acid methionine. Moreover, it helps produce and repair cartilage. SAMe can help ease joint pain caused by osteoarthritis and may even be as effective as the anti-inflammatory drug celecoxib.
Turmeric is one of the most popular supplements for treating pain and inflammation. It contains the chemical compound called curcumin, which is the element of turmeric that seems to relieve pain and has anti-inflammatory effects. Studies found that turmeric improves joint pain symptoms and may be compared to ibuprofen.
If you are looking for more information about turmeric, check out some other articles on our blog, where we dive into the amazing health benefits of turmeric.
People often use Boswellia, also known as Indian frankincense, for arthritis pain. Clinical studies have shown Boswellia extracts reduce osteoarthritis pain more than a placebo. Chemicals in Boswellia called Boswellia acids have anti-inflammatory effects.
6. Fish Oil
The omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil, docosahexaenoic acid, and eicosapentaenoic acid have anti-inflammatory effects. A review of research showed that while fish oil seemed to reduce joint pain in those with rheumatoid arthritis, it did not reduce osteoarthritis symptoms. While you can supplement with omega-3 fatty acids, you can also find them in many foods such as fish, nuts, seeds (chia and flax), walnuts, almonds, and eggs.
Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is a common element in some joint pain supplements. One study showed that MSM lowers pain and increases functioning in those with osteoarthritis more than a placebo.
8. Green Tea
Though not a supplement specifically for joint pain, green tea contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds that could help your joint pain. Green tea is also used for weight loss and may have multiple health benefits.
9. Vitamin D
Vitamin D is crucial for strong, healthy bones and for stopping injuries from falls. Research has shown that individuals with low vitamin D levels may have more joint pain. Vitamin D has also been shown to fight disease, reduce depression, and even boost weight loss, so it is worth considering adding it to your supplement routine.
Again, though not specifically a joint pain supplement, ginger is an herb with anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and anti-atherosclerotic effects.
There are many types of supplements for joint pain, and many supplements will contain multiple elements. Remember that a long list of elements does not mean the product is of better quality. Vitamins and minerals have safe upper limits as well as advised daily allowances. Make sure you ask your doctor about the dosage and follow the manufacturer’s advice.
Dangerous combinations between medications are always a risk, and joint health supplements can combine with some medications, such as blood thinners. Use the information in this article and consult with your doctor or pharmacist to make the best choices for your health.
With age, you will most likely experience joint wear and tear and the pain and discomfort accompanying osteoarthritis. The good news is that a healthy, anti-inflammatory diet and appropriate vitamins and supplements can help reduce joint pain and stiffness. Plus, a healthy diet full of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant-rich foods will support a vibrant, energetic, and healthy life with many benefits.
Whether your joint pain is mild or excruciating, it can severely limit your daily activities and drastically lower your overall quality of life. Check out our 14-Day Joint Recovery Quick Start Program now!
Rick Kaselj MS, is a leading kinesiologist and injury specialist as well as co-creator of the best-selling Unlock Your Hip Flexors program. Rick creates exercise programs that help people heal injuries and eliminate pain, so they can go back to living a full, active, healthy life.