When it comes to treating knee and hip osteoarthritis, experts are divided on the effectiveness of glucosamine and chondroitin. The American College of Rheumatology (ACR) has advised against using either of these supplements for this condition. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that affects millions of people worldwide. It is characterized by the breakdown of cartilage in the joints, leading to pain, stiffness, and swelling.
Glucosamine and chondroitin are two dietary supplements that have been used to treat osteoarthritis. Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound found in the body that helps build and maintain cartilage. Chondroitin is a type of sugar molecule that helps keep cartilage healthy and lubricated. These supplements have been studied extensively, but the results have been mixed.
Some studies have found that glucosamine and chondroitin can reduce pain and improve joint function in people with osteoarthritis. Other studies have found no benefit or only a small benefit. The ACR has concluded that there is not enough evidence to recommend glucosamine or chondroitin for knee or hip osteoarthritis. They also note that these supplements can be expensive and may have side effects, such as nausea, heartburn, and diarrhea.
Despite the ACR's recommendation, some people with osteoarthritis may still choose to take glucosamine or chondroitin. If you decide to take these supplements, it is important to talk to your doctor first. Your doctor can help you weigh the risks and benefits and decide if these supplements are right for you.