Arthritis is a painful condition that affects millions of people around the world. While there is no cure, there are a number of natural supplements that may help reduce inflammation and slow the progression of the disease. Glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate, omega-3 fatty acids, SAM-e, curcumin, and vitamins K1 and K2 have all been studied for their potential to help prevent and treat arthritis. Glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate are two major components of connective tissue and cartilage.
Glucosamine is derived from seafood and vegetables, while chondroitin sulfate is derived from animal cartilage. Studies suggest that taking these two supplements together can reduce inflammation and even slow the progression of osteoarthritis. Omega-3 fatty acids are known for their anti-inflammatory properties. Eating fatty fish such as salmon and mackerel two or more days a week can provide a therapeutic amount of omega-3s, but it can be difficult to get enough through food alone.
SAM-e is a naturally occurring compound found in the body that has been studied for its potential to help treat arthritis. Curcumin, an active ingredient in turmeric, has also been studied for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Vitamins K1 and K2 have been studied for their potential to help prevent bone loss and fractures, which are more common in people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or those who take corticosteroids. Vitamin K2 has been found to be superior in preventing hip fractures, vertebrae fractures, and other fractures.
Vitamin E supplements may also help prevent and treat RA. If you take any supplement for 2 to 6 months and don't notice any relief from arthritis symptoms, it's important to speak with your doctor about other options.