Glucosamine is a compound that is naturally produced in the human body, and it plays a very important role in the creation of cartilage. In addition, glucosamine has many other health benefits, like improvement of wound healing and alleviation of migraines.
Interestingly, there is solid evidence that only the sulfate portion of glucosamine helps to strengthen cartilage, and it has been used in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis. Therefore, it is imperative to use the glucosamine sulfate form, instead of just ordinary glucosamine.
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Cartilage is a flexible connective tissue found in animals, which holds the tubes open in an animal's body. As you age and put wear and tear on the body, cartilage will begin to deteriorate, causing extreme pain, which will interfere with your fitness goals. Hence, it is important to start protecting your cartilage at a young age. This can be achieved with smart training and by taking cartilage and joint saving compounds, such as glucosamine.
Dangers of Ignoring Injuries
There is an epidemic of using pain killers and anti inflammatory drugs in the weight room. You probably have heard this from other weightlifters: "Man, my knee was bothering me! but I took an aspirin with prednisone and now I feel great." In fact, I knew a very strong powerlifter who said he would take those before workout every time he stepped into the gym, which is not a reasonable thing to do.
Inflammation is a sign that the body is attempting to repair itself, so shutting off this reaction and ignoring it with pain killers will lead to more injuries, and it can make the existing injury worse and chronic. This is a dangerous way of dealing with injuries - pounding away at an injury and taking drugs so you can shut off the pain and inflammation and continue to workout. As a result, you can create permanent damage in the process, where your cartilage and soft tissues are rubbed away forever.
Smart training is necessary for long term health in weightlifting and bodybuilding. We know the pro's have to do what they do to make it, but the normal Joe, which is 99.5% of us, should be training smart and taking care of our bodies for the long term.
Using proper form, and not pounding away at injuries, is a great first step to achieving this. Therefore, using glucosamine sulfate is important because of its ability to protect cartilage and joints. Even if you are blessed enough to not have joint issues, you will be glad you invested in this compound 10 or 20 years down the road, when your body starts breaking down with age.
Based on research, you can run glucosamine for years straight with no problems. Nonetheless, if you have certain allergies, like shellfish, you may have a negative reaction. Furthermore, some users get impatient, and run too high of a dose, which leads to stomach issues. If ran correctly at the proper dosage, glucosamine should not be a problem at all.
There are concerns about glucosamine's effects on blood sugar and insulin, but recent studies have debunked this.
For best results, glucosamine should be stacked at the very least with chondroitin, which is derived from cartilage. Running 1 gram (1000mgs) of each will be sufficient for most people, but bodybuilders will want to go a bit higher.
Where to Find it
Glucosamine is very easy to find in any health food store or vitamin shop. Moreover, it is a legal over the counter supplement. However, you must remember that glucosamine should be bought in sulfate form, as it is more effective. Therefore, avoid the cheaper supplements that just have glucosamine without the sulfate.
As mentioned above, glucosamine is far more effective when stacked with other joint supplements, so your best option to save money would be to buy a complete joint supplement stack all in 1 bottle. There is a supplement called N2Joint RX made by N2BM.com, which contains 1250mg of glucosamine sulfate per serving, as well as a dozen other vitamins and joint repairing compounds, which I highly recommend.
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