Reducing joint pain associated with osteoarthritis
Arthritis (“arthro” meaning joint, “itis” meaning inflammation) is used to refer to a number of conditions where some of the main symptoms are joint pain and stiffness that typically get worse with age. The most common types of arthritis are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, with osteoarthritis being the most prevalent[1, 2].
While both rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are types of arthritis they are quite different in the way they affect joints. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition where the lining of joints is mistakenly targeted by the immune system, whereas osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint condition most commonly seen in an older population (50- 60 years of age) [1, 2]. In osteoarthritis it is the cartilage that is worn down over time. It’s when this cartilage wears down that people with osteoarthritis can experience pain, swelling and loss of motion that gets worse over time .
What is cartilage?
Cartilage is the slippery tissue that covers the ends of bones in a joint. In a healthy joint, cartilage makes it easy for bones to smoothly glide over each other as the joint is being used. Cartilage is composed of a complex matrix of water, collagen and proteoglycans and smaller amounts of non-collagenous proteins and glycoproteins.
– Collagen is the most abundant structural component in this matrix, with Type II collagen making 90-95% of all the collagen types.
– Proteoglycans are the second most abundant component of cartilage. Proteoglycans are made up of a “core protein” with attached glycosaminoglycan chains such as chondroitin sulfate or hyaluronic acid. Cartilage contains a variety of proteoglycans which are thought to be essential for healthy joint functioning. The most abundant of which is called aggrecan that is made up of chondroitin sulfate and keratin sulfate and has unique properties of being able to interact with hyaluronic acid.
– Hyaluronic acid is a glycosaminoglycan naturally found in the body serving as a structural element and lubricant.
As there isn’t a cure for osteoarthritis, treatment is typically focused on reducing the symptoms and improving quality of life [1, 4]. It is important to consult with a health care provider to determine what the best management strategy is for each individual.
One of the strategies that have been investigated is supplementation with a combination of active ingredients called BioCell Collagen.
What is BioCell Collagen?
It’s a proprietary nutraceutical grade powder derived from chicken sternal cartilage made containing hydrolyzed collagen type II, chondroitin sulfate and hyaluronic acid.
An interesting randomized controlled trial published in 2012 with 80 individuals with osteoarthritis reported that those individuals that took 2 g of BioCell Collagen/ day had a significant reduction in pain and improved physical activity based on the assessments used after the 70 day trial period.
BioCell is available in a convenient capsule format in Hydraplenish which delivers 500 mg of BioCell Collagen per capsule at a recommended dose of 2 capsules 4 times per day to help reduce pain associated with osteoarthritis.
Also available is BioCell plus MSM. MSM stands for methylsufonylmethane, which naturally occurs in some green plants, fruit and vegetables and humans. It has been studied alone or in combination with glucosamine in osteoarthritis. BioCell plus MSM provides the 500 mg of BioCell Collagen with the addition of 250 mg of MSM to help reduce pain associated with osteoarthritis.
Staff, M.C. Arthritis. [website] 2016 07-01-16 [cited 2017 02-01-17]; Available from: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/arthritis/home/ovc-20168903.
Disease, N.I.o.A.a.M.a.S. What Is Osteoarthritis? Fast Facts: An Easy-to-Read Series of Publications for the Public. 2014 November 2014 [cited 2017 02-01-17]; Available from: https://www.niams.nih.gov/health_info/osteoarthritis/osteoarthritis_ff.asp.
Sophia Fox, A.J., A. Bedi, and S.A. Rodeo, The basic science of articular cartilage: structure, composition, and function. Sports Health, 2009. 1(6): p. 461-8.
Schauss, A.G., et al., Effect of the novel low molecular weight hydrolyzed chicken sternal cartilage extract, BioCell Collagen, on improving osteoarthritis-related symptoms: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. J Agric Food Chem, 2012. 60(16): p. 4096-101.
Gregory, P.J., M. Sperry, and A.F. Wilson, Dietary supplements for osteoarthritis. Am Fam Physician, 2008. 77(2): p. 177-84.