This supplement may reduce death risk as effectively as regular exercise

Credit: Aira Burkhart/WVU

In a new study, researchers found that glucosamine supplements may reduce overall mortality as well as regular exercise does.

The research was conducted by a team from West Virginia University.

In the study, the team assessed data from 16,686 adults who completed the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 1999 to 2010.

All of the participants were at least 40 years old. King and Xiang merged these data with 2015 mortality figures.

After controlling for various factors—such as participants’ age, sex, smoking status and activity level—the researchers found that taking glucosamine/chondroitin every day for a year or longer was linked to a 39% reduction in mortality.

It was also linked to a 65% reduction in heart-related deaths. That’s a category that includes deaths from stroke, coronary artery disease and heart disease, the United States’ biggest killer.

One author himself takes glucosamine/chondroitin, one of the most common formulations of glucosamine supplements.

Does this mean that if you get off work at five o’clock one day, you should just skip the gym, take a glucosamine pill and go home instead?

That’s not what the researchers suggest. Keep exercising, but the thought that taking a pill would also be beneficial is intriguing.

One author of the study is Dana King, professor and chair of the Department of Family Medicine.

The study is published in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine.

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