Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Have there been any independent clinical trials on the safety and effectiveness of glucosamine and chondroitin?
A. Yes. Major independent safety reviews have been conducted by the recognised groups ADIS (published in 2003) and by the Cochrane Collaboration (2005). The ADIS review included more than 1000 patients and concluded that glucosamine has a safety profile similar to that of placebo. The Cochrane group included more than 2,500 patients and said that glucosamine was as safe as placebo.
As you can see, there is little dispute about the safety of glucosamine. From time to time there may be isolated newspaper reports about individuals who have had problems while taking glucosamine. Often however these are people who have been taking other products and may have other medical conditions. These reports should not be seen as a cause for concern.
Q. Is glucosamine licensed?
A. Jointflex’s glucosamine is a food supplement and is not licensed.
Q: I am allergic to shell fish. Would it be safe for me to take glucosamine?
A: You should avoid taking marine derived glucosamine if you are allergic to shellfish. For people such as you, we have a vegetarian glucosamine which is made from corn. Our ‘regular’ glucosamine sulphate is obtained from Chitin. Chitin is the main component from the shells of sea crustaceans such as crabs, lobsters and shrimp.
Q. Will I experience any side effects from taking glucosamine? Is it safe?
A: Trials with glucosamine products internationally have shown it to be very safe and the supplement is regarded as safe for use as a food supplement. In our own clinical trials there were no noticeable adverse effects in people taking our Jointflex glucosamine tablets. Jointflex’s glucosamine is made to a pharmaceutical GMP standard (Good manufacturing practice).
If you are susceptible to stomach upsets, we recommend you take your glucosamine with food. You should also always consult your GP before taking any new supplement.
Q. Can I take glucosamine even though I have diabetes?
A. Recent human studies have shown that glucosamine probably does not effect insulin sensitivity, secretion or action in humans. However, we recommend that you consult your GP before using the product or, indeed, before taking any other new supplement.
Q. Can I take glucosamine if I am pregnant or breast feeding?
A. There has been no specific testing with regard to glucosamine and pregnancy. We would, therefore, advise that you discontinue supplementing your diet with glucosamine while pregnant or breast feeding. There are many other supplements on the market which are designed specifically for women during this stage of their lives.
Q. What dosage of glucosamine should I take?
A. This will entirely depend on your individual preferences. If you have specific questions, you should consult your GP.
Q. Should I remain on 1500mg of glucosamine forever?
A. This really depends on your joint health. If you have specific questions, you should consult your GP.
Q. I’ve been told I should take glucosamine and chondroitin together. Why?
Glucosamine is a naturally-occurring amino sugar found in healthy joint tissue. It plays an important role in the production of cartilage and can help support tendons and ligaments. It’s known as ‘the cement of the connective tissues’ because our joints rely on it to maintain themselves. Sadly, as we get older our bodies become less efficient at producing the nutrients we need to keep us active.
Glucosamine works beautifully when combined with chondroitin. Naturally-occurring chondroitin sulphate exists in the body in the form of chains of repeating sugars. It is known as the ‘liquid magnet’ because it stimulates the uptake of fluid and nutrients into the cartilage, which is vital for proper joint movement.
Q. How long before I receive some benefit from taking glucosamine?
A. As with all food supplements the benefits of glucosamine build up over time. You should not expect any instant effect – it will vary dependent on the individual.
Q. What if I exceed the recommended daily dose of 1500mg of glucosamine? Will I suffer any side effects?
A. There is little experience of very high doses of glucosamine and we do not recommend it. To date there have been no reports of overdose problems.
Q. I am concerned that I already take lots of vitamin pills. Can I take glucosamine as well?
A. Glucosamine is a food supplement and should not interfere with any vitamin supplements you take.
Q. Some of Jointflex’s glucosamine tablets contain Manganese. Can you explain why?
A: Manganese is important because it triggers some enzymes to activate so they begin to work. It is also essential for the formation of certain enzymes, one of which is superoxide dismutase, a powerful antioxidant enzyme that neutralises potentially damaging free radicals.
Q. Will the gel and patch leave a residue?
A. No, the gel can be rubbed on to the affected area and will leave no sticky residue. The patch can be applied to the affected area and there will be no stickiness or residue once you when you have finished with it.
Q When and how often can I use the Gel or Patch?
A. Our GlucOsamine Gel and Patch can be used any time. You might feel the need for some TLC after gardening or other leisure or sporting activities, for example, so simply apply a gel or patch, as required.
Q. The name of your BackOsamine product suggests it suitable for my back. Is this correct?
A. Your back is a complex area. We do not claim that this product can improve back health. However, we do know that glucosamine is an important nutrient in healthy cartilage formation. Cartilage is found not only in knee and shoulder joints but also within the spine. The name BackOsamine is just a reminder that you should also look after your back to keep it healthy. Glucosamine supplementation can help support this.
Q. Could my cholesterol level be raised by taking glucosamine?
A. There have been a few reports of raised cholesterol levels in people taking glucosamine. However it was not known if glucosamine actually caused the raised cholesterol in these cases and so an investigation was conducted.
A long-term study checked cholesterol levels in people who were taking glucosamine or placebo. The study lasted for 3 years and did not show a difference between the glucosamine and placebo groups.
Although this study shows that glucosamine does not increase lipid levels our advice would be, if you have a high cholesterol level or are on medication to control your cholesterol, speak to your doctor before taking glucosamine.