Hyaluronic Acid And Joint Health
Movement is something most of us take for granted. But each time we walk, lift, climb, or reach for something, we employ a complex system of nerves, bones, muscles, tendons and ligaments. And like the moving parts of any machine, our joints require both cushioning and lubrication to function at their best. Without a buffer, bone would grind against bone each time we moved, and this repeated friction would result in discomfort and decreased mobility.
The Amazing Hyaluronic Acid Molecule
Fortunately our bodies produce a miracle molecule that helps our joints minimize friction and move smoothly. Called hyaluronic acid (HA), this long-chain sugar molecule is composed of repeating pairs of two common sugars: D-glucuronic acid and N-acetyl glucosamine. These sugars are abundant in the foods we eat, and our bodies use them to create these long-chain hyaluronic acid molecules.
Interestingly, HA itself is scarce in human food sources, so our bodies must produce it. An average person’s body contains about 15g of HA at any given time. But the life-span of the molecule is relatively short based on the requirements our bodies place on it. Because of that, we are continually producing, breaking down, and recycling hyaluronic acid in our bodies to ensure a constant supply of this vital substance.
How Hyaluronic Acid Supports Joint Health
The most striking characteristic of HA is its ability to bind water. A single molecule of HA can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water! When HA comes into contact with water, it forms a thick viscous gel. Inside the joint capsule, this gel is called synovial fluid and serves as both a lubricant (like motor oil) and as a cushion that keeps bones from making direct contact when we work, exercise, or play.
Synovial fluid contributes to healthy joint function by reducing friction, cushioning bones during strenuous activity, and decreasing stress on attendant structures such as muscles, tendons, and ligaments.
The Challenge of Aging
When we are young, our bodies are easily able to synthesize all the HA we need to ensure joint and bone health. But as we age, our bodies’ ability to synthesize HA decreases, and though we continue to produce the molecule, we do so less efficiently.
A person in their 50s may possess only half the HA they did as a teen. In fact, some of the physical symptoms we associate with aging actually result from gradually decreasing HA levels. Joint discomfort after normal activity and decreased mobility can be common signs of age that are related to decreased HA production. So what can we do to address this process?
Hyaluronic Acid Supplementation
To help our bodies compensate for the Hyaluronic acid we lose naturally as we age, hyaluronic acid can be consumed as a dietary supplement for our joints, or applied topically for our skin and scalp. Supplementation with HA can help support our bodies’ supply of this critical molecule, maintaining our HA reserves to more youthful levels.
The Hyalogic Solution
At Hyalogic, we have spent two decades studying the science of human hydration and the vital role hyaluronic acid plays in helping us maintain healthy joints and bones. Extensive effort has helped us develop a broad array of HA products for joint support. Synthovial Seven®, for example, supports joint health by delivering high molecular weight hyaluronic acid to your body as a dietary supplement. Our HA Chewable Lozenges are created for those who prefer a chewable joint supplement. And as a topical, HylaRub™ provides a soothing cream for the skin and delivers moisturizing HA directly to joints and muscles.
At Hyalogic, we use high-molecular-weight HA in our joint support supplements. This is the type of hyaluronic acid our bodies recognize naturally. Because it is high molecular weight, the HA you receive can go to work helping support joint and bone health. Also, all Hyalogic HA is produced through the fermentation of plant material.
Check out our products page and discover how Hyalogic can put you back in the game.