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Relieve Joint Pain and Arthritis with Collagen

Collagen is one of the body's natural defenses against joint pain. As we age, our bodies produce less collagen. You can help prevent joint pain and arthritis by taking collagen supplements. Find out more information below.
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Collagen is a necessary amino acid that benefits the body in multiple ways. If you suffer from joint pain caused by aging or injuries, taking collagen is one beneficial treatment that can reduce joint pain and arthritis symptoms by 50 percent or more.

This surprisingly effective ingredient has been shown in research studies to work better and faster than many of the leading treatment options for arthritis and joint pain. Find out more about this incredible ingredient below.

What is Collagen?

Medical News Today calls collagen the “glue” that holds the body together. Collagen is actually an amino acid that is used throughout the body to boost the effects of connective tissues. Collagen is necessary to boost the elasticity of joints and skin. The body uses 28 different kinds of collagen in the body. In fact, 30 percent of the body’s proteins are based around collagen.

Collagen makes up about 80 percent of the proteins present in bones and joints. Type II collagen is the form of collagen necessary for restoring joint health. Type II collagen restores elasticity in joints and also fights inflammation in the area.

As a person ages, he or she naturally decreases the production of collagen in the bones. This is one way that joint pain can become worse as a person ages. However, supplementing with type II collagen is one simple way to reduce joint pain and stiffness by up to 50 percent.

Studies About Collagen and Arthritis

Since collagen is one of the major ingredients for bone elasticity and a reduction in joint inflammation, many studies have looked at the benefit of collagen and how it could help fight joint pain in individuals with the two most common forms of arthritis- osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The following studies have looked closely at the role of collagen in joint health, and how taking collagen supplements can help reduce arthritis and joint pain:

In 1998, researchers from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center studied the effects of four dosages of type II collagen on 274 study participants. The doses were 20, 100, 500, or 2,500 microg/day for a total of 24 weeks. At the end of the study, even the patients in the lowest dose group showed a reduction in stiffness and pain by 30 percent or more.

In 2002, the Creighton University Medical looked at 5 women between the ages of 58 and 78 who had rheumatoid arthritis. The study looked at collagen as an autoantigen, which can help suppress the autoimmune system. RA is usually an autoimmune disorder, where the body stimulates the immune system needlessly, leading to excessive pain and inflammation. The study found that supplementing with type II collagen was able to increase tolerance in the autoimmune system, leading to a reduction in swelling and joint pain. At the end of the trial period of 42 days, the women showed significantly lower joint pain and swelling than at the beginning of the study.

A clinical trial from 2009, of which the results were published in the International Journal of Medical Sciences, looked at the role of collagen II versus the traditional supplements of glucosamine and chondroitin. The trial consisted of 52 patients with OA. Some patients were given glucosamine and chondroitin, while others received collagen II supplements. The results were as follows:

Study Results 
  • Collagen reduced the WOMAC score by 33% as compared to 14% in G+C
  • Collagen decreased VAS score by 40% after 90 days as compared to 15.4% in G+C 
  • Collagen decreased the Lequesne's functional index score by 20% as compared to 6% in G+C

These studies highlight the advantages of taking collagen for joint pain and both kinds of arthritis. Numerous other studies have also showed similar results. In most cases, collagen can improve arthritis symptoms by at least 50 percent more than traditional glucosamine and chondroitin treatments.

Where to Find Collagen

Collagen comes in several different forms. Your body makes collagen on its own, but with time, the amount of collagen that your body produces is lessened. You can increase collagen levels in your body through the following sources:

Animal Bones

Animal bones are one of the best sources of collagen. Since collagen comes in over 28 varieties, some of the other sources of collagen may not benefit joint pain. Animal bones contain high levels of type II collagen which is responsible for fighting inflammation and reducing overall joint pain. One of the easiest ways to reap the benefits of animal bone collagen is by making bone broth. Bone broth is produced by boiling animal bones for about 24 hours. You can then use the broth just as you would use broth purchased at a store. Bones are also an excellent source of other beneficial vitamins and minerals.

Other Joint-Healing Ingredients in Bones
  • Calcium
  • Sulphur
  • Magnesium
  • Phosphorous
  • Silica
  • Chondroitin sulfate
  • Hyaluronic acid

Animal Collagen Supplements

Collagen supplements are highly effective at fighting arthritis and joint pain. Joint pain caused by other sources can also be healed with collagen supplements. Joint injuries heal faster when collagen supplements are used. Collagen supplements are the most-studied form of collagen for healing arthritis pain. One of the biggest advantages to taking collagen supplements is that you know precisely how much you are getting in your diet. 500 to 1000 mg of collagen taken daily will significantly reduce joint pain and arthritis symptoms.

Vegetarian Collagen Supplements

If you do not want to take animal-based collagen supplements (due to a vegetarian diet, for example), you do not have to forgo the many benefits of collagen. In fact, many brands carry collagen supplements derived from vegetarian sources. However, these capsules may not contain type II collagen, which is the best for joint health.

Gelatin

Gelatin is actually a natural source of collagen. When bones are boiled, then create gelatin. Gelatin contains high levels of collagen which can help boost joint health and restore elasticity to the connective tissues around joints and bones. Powdered gelatin is an excellent way to add type II collagen to your diet. Look for organic, pasture-raised gelatin sources to avoid any unwanted ingredients included in the gelatin produced by conventional farming and hormones. You can make your own gelatin by boiling high-collagen animal bones, which include hooves, feet, bone joints, chicken combs, and beaks.

Foods With Collagen 
  • Avocado
  • Cantaloupe
  • Leafy greens
  • Almonds
  • Olives
  • Fish
  • Red meat
  • Poultry
  • Animal bones
  • Gelatin
  • Soy
  • Red fruits and vegetables
  • Dairy

Other Supplements For Arthritis

Collagen is one of the best materials you can take for arthritis and joint pain. However, just like with most conditions, there is no single supplement that will heal all instances of pain in all patients. In fact, a multi-treatment approach consisting of several bone and joint healing ingredients is the best way to ensure your joints remain pain-free for many years to come. The following supplements will help boost the effectiveness of type II collagen:

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a helpful vitamin for many functions of the body. Studies have shown that low levels of vitamin C lead to an increased risk of RA. However, too-high levels of vitamin C may contribute to OA pain and the formulation of bone spurs. According to Arthritis Today, the recommended daily vitamin C intake of 75 mg per day for women and 90 mg per day for men will help fight off the increased risk for RA without increasing risk for OA.

Chondroitin Sulfate

Chondrotin sulfate is one of the main structural components of cartilage. All bones contain high levels of chondrotin sulfate, whether animal or human. Chondrotin sulfate is responsible for stimulating the production of new cartilage, improving joint fluid levels to reduce friction, and even blocking enzymes that reduce cartilage levels in the joints. A 1993 study from the University of Rome found that chondrotin was highly effective at boosting bone health.

Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid is another important ingredient for bone health. Healthy bones contain high levels of hyaluronic acid which lubricate joints. However, as you age, hyaluronic acid production goes down. This contributes to stiff joints. Taking hyaluronic acid can help improve joint stiffness. A 2008 study from Miami Research Associates showed that after taking hyaluronic acid supplements for 8 weeks, patient stiffness and pain was significantly reduced in patients with OA.

Methylsulfonyl Methane

Methylsulfonyl Methane (MSM) is one form of sulfur found in bones. Animal studies have shown that this form of sulfur is beneficial in fighting arthritis pain. In one study from 2005, 118 people with OA took MSM supplements for 12 weeks. By the end of the study, arthritis symptoms were reduced. Researchers found that MSM was most effective when used in conjunction with glucosamine.

Boron

Boron is a unique mineral that has circumstantial evidence that it is vital for bone health and the protection against joint pain. A 1994 study conducted by Rex Newnham and Associates looked at the role of boron in the health of bones. The researchers noted that high levels of boron in the diet reduced the chances of getting arthritis from a maximum of 70 percent to a maximum of 10 percent. A daily intake of 3 to 10 mg is the most beneficial for fighting arthritis and joint pain, according to the study.

Glucosamine

Glucosamine is one of the commonly-used natural treatments for bone health. Its benefits in fighting joint pain are well documented. In fact, glucosamine combined with the other vitamins and minerals in this list can be highly effective at reducing arthritis symptoms and overall joint stiffness. In a study of 318 patients conducted by Fundación Jiménez Díaz-Capio University in Spain, a daily dose of 1,500 mg of glucosamine was able to significantly reduce joint pain, stiffness, and other arthritis symptoms in nearly 40 percent of participants with OA.

Stop Arthritis With Type II Collagen

When it comes to arthritis and joint pain, you do not want symptoms to become worse. Joint pain can lead to excruciating pain that will interfere with daily activities and the ability to live your life pain-free. Luckily, type II collagen and the above complimentary supplements will help fight joint pain and restore elasticity and fluid to aging joints.

You do not have to suffer from painful joints simply because you are getting older. Taking collagen will benefit your overall bone health, joint health, reduce inflammation, improve your skin, and provide many other benefits. One of the best things you can do for your joints is to ensure your collage intake remains high as you age.

Sources


http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12837047

http://www.medsci.org/v06p0312.htm

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/262881.php

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