Vitamins and Supplements for Arthritis: Part 1

Part 1

Are you taking the right supplements for your arthritis?

There are many supplements out there marketed towards arthritis supplements, so how do you know which ones will actually help the pain? You have to do your research. Learn how something might help you to determine if it is actually going to give you the benefit that you desire. Doctors say that there are some vitamins and supplements that really are helpful in relieving arthritis pain and improving the condition of joints, but many of them could interact with prescription medication or each other and therefore should be left alone.


The most popular arthritis treatment supplement is glucosamine sulfate. It is thought to protect your joints from cartilage deterioration while helping them move more freely. Studies show that glucosamine sulfate taken as a dietary supplement is most effective for increasing movement in the joint of osteoarthritis sufferers. It decreases pain for some people after supplementing for 4-8 weeks. People with severe, long-term pain, who are older or overweight, did not see much benefit. Other forms of glucosamine, such as glucosamine hydrochloride, and N-acetyl-glucosamine, are chemically similar to glucosamine sulfate, but have not been shown to have any effect on osteoarthritis. The same goes for glucosamine topical creams; there is no evidence showing that glucosamine can enter the body through the skin.

Chondroitin Sulfate

This supplement is thought to slow down the progression of arthritis pain and inflammation while keeping cartilage healthy. Studies show that it is slightly effective when taken in combination with glucosamine sulfate or aspirin. Like glucosamine, there is no evidence that it can be absorbed through the skin, so don’t waste money on creams and rubs. Be careful if your chondroitin supplement also contains manganese, because more than 11mg of manganese can poison the central nervous system. Consider that nuts, seeds, bread, beans, seafood and even tea are significant sources of manganese, so your intake should be monitored. Overall, evidence collected over the past 20 years has shown that people with osteoarthritis can experience some benefit from supplementing with chondroitin sulfate. Pain relief can be expected to be “modest or possibly insignificant”. It is thought that it can reduce the progression of osteoarthritis.


S-Adenosylmethionine, or “SAM-e” for short, does have evidence backing up its effectiveness as an arthritis pain killer and may also protect cartilage from damage, as evidenced in animal studies. However, effective dosages are very expensive and studies show that it is about as effective as a standard anti-inflammatory drug. Patients reported that results were slower coming than when they took prescription anti-inflammatories, but the SAM-e did seem to catch up over time. Results lasted longer after supplementation was stopped than when prescription anti-inflammatories were halted, suggesting that there is a protective effect for cartilage with SAM-e. An effective dosage is considered to be 400mg taken 3-4 times per day.

Continue reading about which supplements may be helpful for your osteoarthritis, including the best vitamin C,in “Vitamins and Supplements for Arthritis: Part 2”.

About the Author: Stacy A. Pessoney is Wholesale Nutrition’s Chief Editor and Communications Research Director. She has a strong interest in helping people achieve greater brain and body health with the help of vitamins and supplements, with an emphasis on vitamin C powder in the form of buffered vitamin C. Wholesale Nutrition has provided the world with the best vitamin C and wholesale vitamins since 1970. Visit to buy high-quality discount vitamins today!


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