Two kinds of arthritis?Osteoarthritis originates in wear-and-tear damage to joint cartilage, the hard, slick lubricating coating on the ends of bones that lets them swivel and turn without friction. Without cartilage’s lubricating effects, to cartilage can lead to bone grinding on bone. Imagine (if you've never experienced it) something as routine as forming a fist, or bending your elbow to touch your nose, or just getting up from a chain, causing serious pain. This wear and tear can occur over many years, or it can be jump-started by a joint injury or infection. In rheumatoid arthritis, your immune system mistakenly attacks the lining of the joint capsule, a tough membrane that encloses all the joint parts. This lining, known as the synovial membrane, becomes inflamed and swollen. The disease process can eventually destroy cartilage and the bone within the joint. Once considered distinctly different diseases, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are more similar than we thought. They're both triggered when the immune system attacks joint cartilage that's been exposed by damage to the synovial membrane. The result? Inflammation, damage to tissues, both at the inflamed site—and wherever more cartilage is found in the body—which is everywhere.
Collagen: a vulnerable building block
What are killer T-cells?Our immune system's T-cells protect us 24 x 7 from attack by foreign cells of all sorts. They do this essential work brilliantly—or we’d all be sick or dead all the time. Any unrecognized cell shape or structure becomes a T-cell target. So the newly naked collagen, which was shielded from T-cells for years, until its protective cartilage broke down, is mistaken by T-cells as a foreign substance. Boom—ruthless, ongoing T-cell attacks and resulting inflammation, for as long as collagen is available beneath damaged cartilage, anywhere in the body.
Breakthrough—you can train your T-cells.Here's the pivot point that changed the way we treat arthritis—offering very real hope for millions. T-cells can be trained to recognize that collagen is a friend, not an enemy. The training tool? Undenatured type II collagen (UC-II). This is a specially engineered collagen. Unlike the altered, denatured collagen used in many valuable procedures like skin grafts, UC-II resembles natural collagen in structure. Where do we find undenatured collagen? You’ll love this …
Chicken soup to the rescueYep, grandma knew her soup. UC-II is naturally derived from chicken cartilage, in a formulation that survives the brutal, acid-bathed journey to the lower end of our small intestine. This is where killer T-cells are “trained” to recognize collagen, and to not attack it.
Relief—the numbersClinical studies show that UC-II supplementation provides marked relief from joint pain, swelling, and loss of function, in both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. A large study of osteoarthritis patients, average age 59, showed impressive results when testing UC-II against glucosamine chondroitin—a popular OTC formulation proven to help rebuild damaged joints. Participants were given either:
- 40 mg of UC-II daily or
- 1500 mg capsules of a glucosamine/chondroitin formulation daily
- 33 percent in the UC-II group
- 14 percent in the glucosamine/chondroitin group
- 40 percent in the UC-II group
- 15 percent in the glucosamine/chondroitin group
See what I mean about reason to hope?
- UC-II can halt damage to collagen
- The glucosamine/chondroitin formulation can rebuild current damage and prevent future damage
- Bagchi, D et al. "Effects of orally administered undenatured type II collagen against arthritic inflammatory diseases: a mechanistic exploration." Published NA. Last accessed April 24, 2017.
- Preston, William. "Rebuild Aging Joints!" Life Extension. Published NA. Last accessed April 24, 2017.
- "Arthritis Overview" Mayo Clinic. Published NA. Last accessed April 24, 2017.
- Shoseyov, Oded. "Human collagen produced in plants—more than just another molecule" Published August 9, 2013. Last accessed April 24, 2017.