Glucosamine: What is it? Benefits, Treatment, Side Effects and Realized Studies

It is a component that the body requires for the formation of cartilage.

It is usually created naturally in the fluid around the joints or the bone marrow; it can also be extracted from shellfish, animal bones, or fungi.

Some doctors use it as a supplement for osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.

Glucosamine sulfate is also extracted from seafood shells to make dietary supplements.

Treatment with Glucosamine

Depending on the type of treatment required by the person, Glucosamine can be taken orally in the following presentations:

  • Glucosamine sulfate.
  • Glucosamine hydrochloride.
  • N-acetyl-glucosamine

These variants may have different effects when used as dietary supplements.

To date, most studies on the possible health benefits of this supplement are focused on glucosamine sulfate.



Glucosamine is vital for the construction of cartilage. Cartilage is a flexible and resistant connective tissue found in various body parts. This firm, rubbery tissue works as a filler at the ends of the long bones, where they join with the joints.

The human body, as it ages, loses the versatility of all its extremities, and among them is the cartilage, which in some cases can be dangerous because it loses its flexibility, being more prone to break from one moment to another.

That is why ingesting Glucosamine as a supplement can help reduce the risk of injury, delay the process and even help to heal or regenerate cartilage.

Conditions that are treated with Glucosamine

Some people take Glucosamine for joint pain, and some doctors recommend it to fight or heal the following diseases:

  • Osteoarthritis in the knee.
  • Glaucoma.
  • Weightloss.
  • Interstitial cystitis is a condition of the bladder.
  • Jaw pain.
  • Back pain.
  • Multiple sclerosis.

Glucosamine supplements are also used by people with inflammatory bowel disease and ulcerative colitis.

This supplement also helps:

  • Reduce pain in the extremities of the body.
  • Decrease rigidity
  • Reduce the pain, stiffness, and swelling associated with osteoarthritis in the joints.
  • Improves the function of people with osteoarthritis of the knee or hip.
  • Provides continued relief of symptoms for up to 3 months after someone stops treatment.

The combination of Glucosamine and Chondroitin represents superior relief for some patients with moderate to severe pain.

Also, this supplement can improve the body discomfort caused by osteoporosis, but it is not the appropriate treatment to keep this disease stable.

Side effects

This supplement can generate some mild and infrequent side effects in the body, such as:

  • Upset stomach
  • Constipation.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Headaches.
  • Acne.
  • Skin rash
  • Drowsiness.
  • Redness on the cheekbones of the face.

The effect of Glucosamine during pregnancy or lactation is unknown, so it is not recommended to use it.

Other uses for Glucosamine

Some studies have suggested that a form of Glucosamine can help people with bowel disease.

It can also inhibit the growth and function of abnormal T cells that mistakenly cause a person’s immune system to attack and destroy myelin, the tissue that insulates the nerves.

Another study found that Glucosamine can have a drag effect when used with ibuprofen to reduce pain levels in people with temporomandibular joint problems.

Studies were carried out to verify its effectiveness.

This supplement has been recommended for various conditions and diseases, but studies have tended to be inconclusive or have proved ineffective or even harmful, for example, for people with allergies.

There is no evidence, for example, that it helps or does not help people with sports injuries or chronic low back pain.

There are no scientific studies to suggest that Glucosamine is beneficial or harmful to people with venous insufficiency, affecting blood flow in the legs.

In conclusion, Glucosamine is relatively safe when taken as recommended by adults without asthma or allergies. However, there is currently no evidence of his ability to deal with joint complaints and other conditions.