Methylsulfonylmethane, commonly known as MSM, is a naturally occurring compound found in small amounts in some foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and grains. It is also available in dietary supplement form, typically as a capsule, tablet, or powder. MSM is often marketed as a natural remedy for various health conditions, such as joint pain, inflammation, and skin health. It is thought to work by providing sulfur, a necessary component for forming certain amino acids, proteins, and enzymes in the body. In this article, we will explore the benefits of MSM based on research, its side effects, and recommended dosage.
Benefits of MSM based on research
MSM is often touted for its ability to reduce inflammation, which is a natural response to injury or infection. However, chronic inflammation can lead to several health issues, including cancer, arthritis, and heart disease. Hence, MSM’s potential to decrease inflammation is considered one of its most notable benefits. Several studies have shown that MSM can help to reduce inflammation by blocking the production of inflammatory molecules in the body.
Improving joint health
Another popular use of MSM is for improving joint health, particularly in people with osteoarthritis.It is a degenerative joint disease that causes pain, stiffness, and swelling in the joints. Several studies have shown that MSM can help reduce pain and improve physical function in people with osteoarthritis, possibly by reducing inflammation and supporting the production of collagen and other important proteins for joint health.
Promoting skin health
MSM has also been studied for its potential benefits for skin health. Several studies have shown that MSM may help improve skin elasticity, reduce wrinkles, and promote collagen production, which could help keep the skin youthful and healthy.
Support Recovery After Workout
MSM supplements have also been shown to aid post-workout recovery and potentially reduce pain and tissue stress. Small studies of 16 healthy males, 22 healthy individuals, and 24 exercise-trained males indicate that taking MSM supplements can reduce biomarkers of oxidative stress, increase the antioxidant capacity of the blood, and result in less muscle soreness and joint pain after exercise. However, it is important to note that these studies were conducted on small groups of participants.
Supporting immune function
Some research, although limited, suggest that MSM may have immune-boosting properties by stimulating the production of immune cells in the body. This could support overall immune function and reduce the risk of infection.
May Help With Allergies
Allergic rhinitis, also known as nasal allergies, is a condition that can cause a range of unpleasant symptoms, including sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and coughing when a person is exposed to allergens such as pollen, dust, animal dander, or mold. Fortunately, a double-blind study has demonstrated that taking a daily dose of 3 g of MSM may be an effective treatment for allergic rhinitis, with participants experiencing a reduction of over 50% in their allergy symptoms. These findings suggest that MSM may offer a promising natural remedy for managing the discomfort associated with allergic rhinitis.
Side effects of MSM
While MSM is generally considered safe for most people, some individuals may experience side effects when taking the supplement. The most common side effects of MSM include:
- Upset stomach
In rare cases, MSM may cause more serious side effects, such as allergic reactions or liver damage. If you experience any unusual symptoms while taking MSM, it is important to stop taking the supplement and consult with your healthcare provider.
Dosage of MSM
The recommended dosage of MSM can vary depending on the individual and the reason for taking the supplement. In general, most studies have used doses ranging from 1-3 grams per day, although some studies have used higher doses with no reported side effects.
It is important to speak with a healthcare provider before taking MSM, as they can help determine the appropriate dosage for your needs and ensure that it is safe for you to take.
Overall, MSM is a popular dietary supplement that has been studied for its potential benefits for reducing inflammation, improving joint health, promoting skin health, and supporting immune function. While MSM is generally considered safe, it is important to speak with a healthcare provider before taking the supplement, especially if you have any underlying medical conditions or are taking other supplement medications.
Q. Is MSM safe for everyone to take?
- While MSM is generally considered safe, it is important to speak with a healthcare provider before taking the supplement. Some common side effects may include stomach upset, headache, insomnia, etc.
Q. Can MSM help with joint pain?
- Several studies have shown that MSM can help reduce pain and improve physical function in people with osteoarthritis.
Q. Are there any side effects of taking MSM?
- MSM’s most common side effects include upset stomach, diarrhea, headache, and insomnia. In rare cases, MSM may cause more serious side effects, such as allergic reactions or liver damage.
Q. How much MSM should I take?
- The recommended dosage of MSM can vary depending on the individual and the reason for taking the supplement. Most studies have generally used doses ranging from 1-3 grams per day.
Q. Can MSM help with skin health?
- Some research suggests that MSM may help improve skin elasticity, reduce wrinkles, and promote collagen production.
Q. Can MSM be taken with other supplements or medications?
- Speaking with a healthcare provider before taking MSM with other supplements or medications is important, as it may interact with certain drugs or supplements.
Q. Is MSM a natural supplement?
- Yes, MSM is a naturally occurring compound found in small amounts in some foods, such as fruits and vegetables.
Q. How long does it take to see the benefits of MSM?
- The time it takes to see the benefits of MSM can vary depending on the individual and the reason for taking the supplement. Some people may experience benefits within a few days or weeks, while others may need to take the supplement for several months to see results.
Q. Can MSM help with hair growth?
- While there is limited research on the effects of MSM on hair growth, some studies suggest that it promotes hair growth and reduces hair loss.
Q. Is MSM vegan-friendly?
- Yes, MSM is typically derived from plant sources and is considered vegan-friendly.
In summary, MSM is a dietary supplement studied for its potential benefits for reducing inflammation, improving joint health, promoting skin health, and supporting immune function. While MSM is generally safe for most people, it is important to speak with a doctor before taking the supplement. MSM can be a valuable addition to a healthy lifestyle with the right dosage and use.