What is MSM?
MSM occurs naturally in some plants, such as horsetail; fruits and vegetables; some grains; and milk. MSM is important in joint health and helps form connective tissue -- cartilage, tendons, and ligaments. It may also slow the nerve impulses that transmit pain signals, reducing pain.
Methylsulfonylmethane, or MSM, delivers sulfur, an essential mineral nutrient. According to "The Miracle of MSM" by Drs. Jacob, Lawrence and Zucker, MSM relieves back pain, osteoarthritis, muscle pain, headaches, athletic injuries, carpal tunnel syndrome and other pain problems.
The supplement MSM has been proven to relieve joint pain including neck, back, hip, shoulder and knee pain. MSM supplements help treat chronic pain and a variety of inflammatory disorders, including rheumatoid arthritis, and osteoporosis. Sports injuries and tendonitis can benefit from using MSM.Published, peer-reviewed clinical research in the U.S. has shown MSM is safe and effective in increasing joint comfort and supporting a normal range of motion.
MSM and Inflammatory Disorders
Alternative medical practitioners suggest that MSM supplements help treat chronic pain and a variety of inflammatory disorders, including rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, bursitis, tenosynovitis, tendinitis and eye inflammation. According to "Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database," MSM is arguably most commonly used for the treatment of osteoarthritis, and multiple studies have found that MSM can modestly reduce osteoarthritis-related pain and swelling and enhance joint function.
A study finds the combination of MSM and glucosamine to benefit in the treatment of arthritis.
The Many Benefits of MSM
Improves flexibilityResearch has shown that MSM is highly effective in improving joint flexibility. Additionally, it helps to produce flexible skin and muscle tissue. This leads to an increase in overall flexibility due to a restoration of the “juiciness” in the tissues.Accelerates healingLactic acid and other byproducts cause pain and soreness in the body. MSM increases the ability of the body to eliminate waste products at the cellular level. This speeds recovery and frees up more energy for rebuilding.
Anti-inflammatoryMSM is a powerful anti-inflammatory due to its ability to allow metabolic wastes to be removed from the cells. Excess weight on the body is actually inflammation. The cells of the body are chronically inflamed and retaining the byproducts of metabolic processes. Sulfur needs to be present In order for these toxins and wastes to be removed from the body. When these byproducts can be removed from the system, then the cells can also dispose of excess fluids that were being stored as a buffer. What results is a natural and effective reduction in unwanted weight.
How MSM Works to Improve Joint Health ?
MSM is thought to be effective in the fight against Osteoarthritis (OA) and other joint pain because of its high sulfur content, one of the building blocks of healthy joints.
What Causes Joint Pain?
Osteoarthritis (OA) and physical strain can lead to joint pain and swelling. MSM has been shown to relieve pain associated with OA. It has also shown anti-inflammatory effects in animal research. Osteoarthritis (OA) is a nearly universal consequence of aging among vertebrates. Over 40 million Americans have some form of degenerative joint disease, including 80% of people over 50 years old. By the seventh decade, OA is nearly universal, producing the highest rate of morbidity of any disease. Joints affected by OA suffer from uneven loading, which leads to altered lines of weight bearing. Cartilage (made by cells called chondrocytes) begins to build up to compensate for the uneven load, which forms roughening and deformities in the joint surface. The joints inflame and no longer operate smoothly, but instead the ball and socket rub unevenly from the friction of the outgrowths of cartilage and bone, called osteophytes. These changes cause irritation, triggering more cartilage growth and inflammation-- and the cycle of degeneration is set into motion. Science has been unsuccessful in finding a cure for OA, so instead, treatment focuses on easing the symptoms. Sports injuries, tennis elbow, and tendonitis involve inflammation and micro-trauma to the soft tissues around the joints. The inflammation caused by these injuries can easily become chronic due to overuse or improper after-care, resulting in symptoms not unlike arthritis: soreness, stiffness, and general pain in the region. The Role of Sulfur in Joint Pain MSM is thought to deliver sulfur to the body in a useable way. Sulfur helps maintain the structure of connective tissue by forming cross-linkages through disulfide bonds, i.e., sulfur strengthens the tissues that make up the joint. Sulfur is critical to good joint health. Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) are the fundamental building blocks of joint cartilage, and GAG molecules are linked together in chains by disulfide bonds. As the name implies, these bonds are between two sulfur atoms. The disulfide bridges reduce conformational flexibility of GAG chains, making cartilage firm and resilient. Cartilage integrity is thus a sulfur-dependent state. MSM contains a lot of sulfur – 34% by weight. While more research is needed to determine how the body absorbs the sulfur it needs from MSM, preliminary studies in mice and in horses suggest that the sulfur in MSM is incorporated into proteins and into joint tissues.
Osteoarthritis & Joint Pain Relief
Studies have shown that MSM provides relief of joint pain caused by osteoarthritis.
"The evidence for MSM continues to become more impressive. This recent study, along with others currently in process, will likely help verify the use of MSM as a cornerstone for those seeking optimal joint health,." says Jason Theodosakis, MD, Asst. Professor, University of Arizona College of Medicine, and author of the bestselling, The Arthritis Cure.
Athletes strive to improve their performance, but they also need to protect their bodies against injuries small and large. MSM can help. MSM for Sport Injuries Every year, thousands of athletes suffer debilitating injuries or joint degeneration. Most sports injuries involve pain, redness, heat, and swelling: the four cardinal signs of inflammation. MSM supplementation can assist the healing process.
In Fighting Pain
MSM been reported to reduce the occurrence of, or to entirely eliminate, muscle cramps of the back and leg, both caused by inactivity and by intense use (as with runners and other athletes who experience cramps while competing). Also, it greatly reduces or eliminates pain from chronic arthritis. Many people with musculoskeletal system disorders, inflammation pains from other than arthritis, and other pains (such as migraine) have reported substantial and long-lasting relief while using MSM.