Elasti Joint is a joint-support formula made by Labrada which contains several well-known joint health ingredients as well as some that we feel are under-utilized currently.
Hydrolyzed Gelatin, also commonly referred to as Collagen Hydrolysate is produced from actual collagen (though Labrada doesn’t state exactly what type of collagen). A 24-week study published in 2008 found that non-professional athletes who consumed 10 grams of collagen hydrolysate daily experienced an overall reduction in joint pain throughout the course of the study.
A 2009 study published in the “International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition” reported similar findings: Subjects who consumed 10 grams of collagen hydrolysate daily experienced an overall increase in knee joint comfort. However, in patients diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, collagen supplementation has been largely ineffective, according to several studies.
So, it appears as though collagen may be more beneficial in individuals with osteoarthritis or as joint protection for athletes who are may be at risk for developing osteoarthritis. Efficacy has been demonstrated at doses of 10 grams daily, but Elasti Joint only contains 5 grams per serving so we cannot say with absolute certainty that it would still be noticeably effective.
Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is similar in efficacy to glucosamine, but a significant synergistic effect has never been recorded. It is hypothesized that the real benefit of MSM lies in the fact that it contains sulfur, which is a component of collagen, and thus necessary for functional, healthy joints. According to this hypothesis, only people with sulfur deficiencies would derive benefit, and would be able to derive the same benefit from other sulfur containing compounds such as the amino acids methionine and cysteine.
However, this is just a hypothesis and an exact mechanism of action is not currently known. Overall, it appears MSM offers the same benefits as glucosamine in regards to joint health, but there is no evidence that the same benefit cannot be derived from glucosamine supplementation alone. With 2000mg of MSM, Elasti Joint contains roughly 4 times the dose found in the average MSM containing joint supplement.
Chondroitin, a major component of cartilage, is generally seen along-side glucosamine in joint supplements based on the belief that the two work synergistically together to reduce inflammation and repair joints. In vitro, chondroitin and glucosamine have been demonstrated to synergistically induce collagen synthesis. However, in vivo studies comparing and contrasting the effects of chondroitin relative to glucosamine fail to find such synergy between the two. In fact, most of the benefit obtained from supplementation with glucosamine and chondroitin is thought to be from glucosamine as chondroitin has shown little promise when studied in isolation.
Glucosamine is a member of the group known as ‘amino sugars’, and has been studied primarily in regards to joint health. Glucosamine is commonly found in two forms: glucosamine sulfate and glucosamine hydrochloride. Glucosamine sulfate appears to be the most readily absorbed when consumed orally. While originally thought to directly induce collagen synthesis, more recent research indicates that glucosamine may actually work by inhibiting Interleukin-1, a protein which regulates inflammatory response and ultimately breaks down collagen.
By inhibiting IL-1, glucosamine may reduce inflammation and slow down the degradation of collagen, thereby preserving the joint and possibly reducing joint pain. This was evidenced in a recent 2013 study, as well as a 2009 study which noted lower levels of CX-II (a bio-marker of collagen breakdown) in athletes (bicyclists and soccer players) following glucosamine supplementation (most effective at 3 grams daily).
While glucosamine appears to be atleast somewhat effective at preserving joints, there is no evidence to suggest that supplementation can reverse osteoarthritis (degradation of joints). However, preserving joints is still of much importance to athletes (particularly high impact sports) who may be in danger of developing osteoarthritis. Overall, glucosamine may certainly benefit those suffering from osteoarthritis (or perhaps less severe joint degradation), but the miracle claims made by some supplement companies are a bit exaggerated.
Elasti Joint contains 1500mg of Glucosamine per serving, which is in-line with what has been demonstrated to be at least somewhat effective (although 3000mg has proven more effective). Users may choose to double the dose in order to achieve maximum efficacy. Glucosamine is entirely safe at these levels.
THE BOTTOM LINE:
Elasti Joint is an all-around solid joint support supplement, containing the standard array of joint-health ingredients (glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM), but at clinically effective doses. In addition to the these ingredients, the formula also contains 5 grams of collagen hydrosylate per serving, which gives it a definite edge over competing products that just contain glucosamine, chondroitin, and MSM. Ultimately, Elasti Joint may be of interest to athletes who must compete regardless of joint discomfort, or any individual whose daily activities have been restricted as a result of joint pain. At about 80 cents per serving, Elasti Joint is priced pretty competitively, when compared to competing products as well as reconstruction costs of the individual ingredients on their own.
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