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Type II Collagen May Provide Relief for People with Knee Osteoarthritis

Knee osteoarthritis can be a crippling disease, hindering movement and causing pain in people who suffer from it. A recent study suggests that taking a type II collagen supplement derived from chicken sternum cartilage may improve knee joint symptoms in people with knee osteoarthritis.


Participants in the study included 234 people between the ages of 40 and 75 years old with a body mass index between 18 and 30 kg/m2. All of the participants had moderate-to-severe osteoarthritis, as diagnosed by physical examination, and had knee pain for three months before the start of the study.


Over the course of 180 days, the participants were given either 40 mg of type II collagen supplements, glucosamine chondroitin (1,500 mg of glucosamine hydrochloride and 1,200 mg of chondroitin sulfate) pills, or a placebo. The type II collagen participants were instructed to take two placebo capsules in the morning and two 20mg capsules of type II collagen in the evening. The researchers used the Western Ontario McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) to assess pain.


The researchers found that the type II collagen group had a significant reduction in their overall WOMAC score when compared with the placebo and the glucosamine chondroitin groups. They also noted significant changes in all three WOMAC subscales: pain, stiffness, and physical function.


Researchers from InterHealth Nutraceuticals and the University of California, Davis, conducted the study. It was published on January 29, 2016, in Nutrition Journal.


Approximately 25% of bone structure is collagen. It contributes to bone strength by lending a certain amount of flexibility to the rigid structure, allowing bone to give a little under pressure. Previous studies suggest that type II native collagen from chickens may provide pain relief when exercising.

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