Chondroitin – The Health Benefits and Side Effects of the Drug

One plentiful substance that seems to help alleviate the pain and progression of this disease is Chondroitin Sulfate (or Chondroitin for short). Learn more about the health benefits and side effects of Chondroitin Sulfate.




As the average human lifespan increases, so does the number of health problems we are likely to experience in our time. One such problem is arthritis, specifically osteoarthritis (degenerative joint disease). Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, and it is the leading cause of chronic disability in the United States, affecting over 100 million people worldwide. Luckily,

Chondroitin is a crucial component of cartilage, and it is responsible for its resistance to compression. In dietary supplements, it is derived from the cartilage of animals such as pigs, cows, sharks, or even birds. It is regulated in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration as a Dietary Supplement.
In twenty two other countries, however, Chondroitin is regulated as a prescription medication or over the counter drug.

Health Effects Of Chondroitin

Clinical tests have not been able to identify any side effects or potential for overdose with prolonged Chondroitin use, thus suggesting its long term safety. The European League Against Rheumatism assigned Chondroitin a toxicity level of six on a 0-100 point scale, thus suggesting that it is one of the safest medications against osteoarthritis. It is made even safer because Chondroitin has no known drug-drug interactions.

Generally, the dosage of Chondroitin administered in clinical studies is between 800 and 1,200 mg a day. The bioavailability of Chondroitin is between 15% and 24%, meaning only this much is actually absorbed into the body.

Chondroitin is thought to be effective in treating Osteoarthritis because of its anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to slow down cartilage damage. In fact, many schools of thought attribute the origin of Osteoarthritis to a deficiency of Chondroitin in the very first place.

Chondroitin is also an excellent anti-inflammatory replaced for NSAID’s and Acetaminophen. Both Acetaminophen and NSAID’s can carry a number of potentially harmful side effects especially at high doses or through prolonged use (coincidentally both of which usually occur when used to treat Osteoarthritis).

Chondroitin Other Uses

Whilst much of the clinical data and publicity surrounding Chondroitin has been for the treatment of Osteoarthritis, the vast majority of Chondroitin is currently consumed by people without Osteoarthritis. Weightlifters, athletes, and even people with minimal levels of physical activity have all begun to use Chondroitin as a dietary supplement to fight off aches and pains in their joints.

Many of these individuals take the supplement as a preventative measure, whilst others may have strained their knee or elbow through athletic activity.

Lately, even many brands of dog food and dog treats have integrated Chondroitin into their formulas, claiming that since the joints of pets experience so much stress, they can surely benefit from its effects.

Because it is unregulated in the United States as a drug, but rather seen as a Dietary Supplement, it has been added to a wide variety of consumer products. Make sure to be careful as the quality or quantity of Chondroitin in these products is largely undisclosed. As always, it is best when taken as an independent nutritional supplement.

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