Originally published December 4 2009
Glucosamine and Omega-3s are a Winning Com-bone-ation
by Frank Mangano
(NaturalNews) Glucosamine has a virtual monopoly in the joint health market, but a recent study from Germany shows that glucosamine would be wise to make room for another joint health jewel: omega-3s.
Omega-3 fatty acids have been heralded for their health promoting properties for awhile now, primarily in the heart health realm, but also in the mental health and sexual health realm (i.e., studies have shown they can help treat depression and problems with low sperm count). With this latest study, omega-3s are proving to be a real jack of all trades.
The study, conducted by Dr. Joerg Gruenwald, founder and president of Analyze and Realize in Berlin, Germany, looked at approximately 180 people who had osteoarthritis in varying forms of severity. For a little more than six months, half the participants took a glucosamine-only supplement (i.e., 1,500 mg per day ), while the other half took a combined glucosamine/omega-3 supplement (i.e., 1,500 mg of glucosamine plus 444 mg of fish oil, half of which was pure omega-3).
After 26 weeks, both groups reported reduced pain and stiffness, but the percentage of people reporting improvements was higher in the glucosamine/omega-3 group. For instance, in the glucosamine-only group, the reduction in pain was between 41 percent and just over 55 percent. But for the combined glucosamine/omega-3 group, the reduction in pain was between 48 percent and 56 percent.
Gruenwald measured the participants' levels of pain through a 24-question assessment developed by Western Ontario and McMaster Universities in 1982; it's appropriately named the WOMAX Osteoarthritis Index. It is an extremely reliable test for osteoarthritis and is used around the world by orthopedists.
While rheumatoid arthritis is the most serious form of arthritis, osteoarthritis is the most widely diagnosed. About 21 million people in the U.S. alone have osteoarthritis, compared to the 2.1 million that have rheumatoid arthritis. Among several other differences, osteoarthritis usually begins in a single joint, whereas rheumatoid arthritis affects multiple joints. Aging is the primary cause of osteoarthritis, but with rheumatoid arthritis, an auto-immune disease, multiple causes may be to blame (e.g., genetic predisposition, a certain act that triggered it). No one definitive cause for rheumatoid arthritis is known.
With this news, the market on omega-3 supplementation will really skyrocket. As it is, the business research and consulting firm Frost & Sullivan estimates that omega-3 supplement demand will increase by 10 to 13 percent over the next few years, a rather conservative assessment after the 30 to 40 percent growth in the omega-3 supplement market since 2006.
In crime solving, Holmes has Watson; in crime fighting, Batman has Robin. And in joint healing, glucosamine has omega-3. Or, given its superhero like qualities when it comes to health matters, O-Mega Man.
About the authorFrank Mangano is an American author, health advocate, researcher and entrepreneur in the field of alternative health. He is perhaps best known for his book "The Blood Pressure Miracle," which continues to be an Amazon best selling book. Additionally, he has published numerous reports and a considerable amount of articles pertaining to natural health.
Mangano is the publisher of Natural Health On The Web, which offers readers free and valuable information on alternative remedies. To learn more visit:
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