Definition: "An ergogenic aid is any substance or phenomenon that enhances performance "

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Glucosamine protects joints of strength athletes

In 2010 sports scientists at the University of Copenhagen produced evidence of what tens of thousands of athletes had already experienced for themselves. Glucosamine protects joints that do strength training.

Glucosamine [structural formula shown here] is a sugar compound that is present in joints. That's how the idea arose that you can make joints stronger by taking glucosamine supplements. Whether this is the case is still not clear. In recent studies the effect of glucosamine has been disappointing.

However, most of these studies have been done on people with advanced arthritis, whose joints are therefore already seriously damaged. These subjects have little mobility. Athletes with joint problems on the other hand react well to glucosamine.

Studies have shown that strength training has a positive effect on arthritis sufferers. The Danes wondered what would happen if they gave glucosamine to osteoarthritis sufferers who do strength training. They also looked at the effects of ibuprofen, an anti-inflammatory that doctors often prescribe for people with arthritis.

The experiment lasted 12 weeks. The subjects trained 3 times a week. They cycled for 10 minutes and then trained their leg muscles on the leg-extension and leg-press machines.

The ibuprofen group took 600 mg twice a day, and the glucosamine group took 500 mg of glucosamine sulphate three times a day. The glucosamine they used was a Ferrosan product.

The placebo group, the glucosamine group and the ibuprofen group all made the same progress when it came to strength.

Glucosamine protects joints of strength athletes

Glucosamine protects joints of strength athletes

Before the experiment started, and two days after the last strength training session, the researchers determined the concentration of cartilage oligomeric matrix protein [COMP] in the subjects' blood. The more of this there is the blood, the stronger the catabolic processes in the joints. The researchers discovered that the glucosamine supplementation lowered the COMP concentration significantly.

Another marker for joint breakdown in arthritis is the concentration of c-telopeptide of type-2 collagen in the urine. This did not react to the treatment.

The research was funded mainly by the Danish Rheumatism Association and the Danish Ministry of Health. Addition funding came from private sources.

Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2010 Jan; 18(1): 34-40.

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Glucosamine, the life extender Glucosamine protects against deadly heart attacks Animal study from 1953: glucosamine inhibits cancer

Glucosamine, the life extender
It's been on the market for about twenty years: glucosamine – an aminosugar that, according to small studies, protects joints (and according to larger studies, mainly sponsored by the pharmaceutical sector, has no effect at all).

Glucosamine protects against deadly heart attacks
Glucosamine is more than a supplement that protects joints from wear and tear.

Animal study from 1953: glucosamine inhibits cancer
Users of glucosamine supplements usually try to protect or strengthen their joints. Without knowing it, they also protect themselves against cancer.