Best Joint Support Supplements Ranked for 2018 – Top 10 Brands

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Jump Ahead to the Best Joint Products

Have you ever had pains in your shoulders, knees, neck or back? Have you ever had pain in your wrists, ankles, or elbows? These are all very common feelings, particularly in older people. Sometimes the pain in these areas can come from your joints. There are hundreds of joints in the human body, and they are necessary for your natural mobility and the construction of the human skeletal system. This means they are a huge factor in your lifelong health and wellbeing.

To increase your quality of life for the long term, it is important to take care of your joints. According to the CDC, arthritis is currently a leading cause of disability in the United States, with 23% of all adults afflicted with this joint disease. The best joint support vitamins can reduce your risk of developing this painful disease, as well as ease your symptoms naturally if you already have it. They can also improve the function of your joints. This guide is all about your joints, and how good joint support vitamins can keep them healthy.

What Are Joint Support Supplements?

Joint support vitamins are supplements that can be taken to support joint health in numerous ways. There are a number of vitamins and minerals that can be taken to support joint health, and they all have different benefits. Here is a list of powerful joint support vitamins that you can look for in a good joint support vitamin.

  • Calcium – Calcium is an important mineral for maintaining the musculoskeletal system and can help slow joint damage that can be caused by rheumatoid arthritis.
  • PotassiumPotassium is an electrolyte, and if your body has low levels of it, you may experience joint pain and inflammation. Taking potassium may help reduce your chances of experiencing joint inflammation and pain due to low levels of potassium.
  • Selenium – This vitamin is also important to the proper functioning of the thyroid gland and the immune system.
  • ManganeseManganese is an essential mineral that supports the integrity and strength of bones, and helps inflammation.
  • Vitamin A – Vitamin A has anti-inflammatory properties and functions as an antioxidant. It is beneficial to joint health because of both of those properties. It may be beneficial in managing rheumatoid arthritis by suppressing inflammatory cytokines.
  • Vitamin CVitamin C is an antioxidant and can be beneficial because of that. It helps support collagen health and integrity, which is a main protein in joints and bone.
  • Vitamin E – Vitamin E is another fantastic antioxidant that is beneficial to joint health and support. Vitamin E can reduce joint pain caused by forms of arthritis.
  • Zinc – Zinc supports immune system health and cartilage health. It is also important for over one hundred different enzyme reactions in the body.

As you can see, vitamins and minerals can be very beneficial to improving joint health. They are also beneficial to overall health, and many of of these vitamins and minerals have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Reducing inflammation and oxidative damage is beneficial to overall health, and also is a defining factor for some of the best joint support vitamins. Most effective joint support vitamins will contain a blend of the above vitamins, plus more.

The Importance of Joint Health

The points in your body at which two or more bones in your body are connected is called a joint. Essentially, joints allow the skeletal system to function. To understand how fundamental joints are to your health, you must understand how they function and how important they are to the skeletal system.

In mobile joints, at the point of connection between bones of a joint, there is a lining called cartilage. Cartilage prevents bones from grinding against each other at the joint.

Then, surrounding the bones and cartilage, there are bands of elastic tissue that keep them all together. These tissues are called ligaments. Finally, muscles are connected to bones through tough tissues called tendons. Bones, cartilage, ligaments, and tendons all work together to create a fully functional joint.

Some mobile joints are surrounded by a synovium, otherwise known as a capsule. This capsule creates synovial fluid that lubricates the joint, just like lubricating moving parts on a machine.

Here are some categories of synovial joints:

  • Hinge joints – Hinge joints are exactly what they sound like. They operate on one axis, like a hinge on a door. An example of hinge joints include your fingers and elbows.
  • Pivot joints – Pivot joints are joints that allow rotation, such as where the top of the spine meets the skull. This pivot joint allows pivotal motion of the head.
  • Gliding joints – Also known as a planar joint or a plane joint, this joint allows gliding motion of bones so that they slide past one another along a plane. These joints also allow circular motion. One example of a gliding joint would be your intercarpal joints in your wrist.
  • Condyloid jointsCondyloid joints have a bone with an oval shaped protrusion that form fits to an ovular socket in another bone. Because of the oval shape, it can also be called an ellipsoid joint. They allow most types of motion. An example of a condyloid joint would be the connection between the radius and the carpal joint.
  • Saddle jointsSaddle joints can be visualized like a person sitting on a saddle. One bone arches over another bone that form fits. Saddle joints allow circular motion, flexion, and extension. One saddle joint in the body is located at the base of the thumb.
  • Ball and socket jointsBall and socket joints can rotate on any axis, and have the most free motion. They include a bone with a circular shape that form fits into a spherical socket. Hip and shoulder joints are examples of ball-and-socket joints.

Without joints, we could not be mobile or flexible creatures. Mobile joints allow us to walk, talk, move our arms, use our fingers, move our heads, and much more. As you can clearly see, joints are very important, and they affect our abilities and our overall quality of life. The health of our joints is therefore extremely important.

Joint Support Ingredients

There are other ingredients that can be included in a joint support vitamin as well. These ingredients can work together with vitamins, or stand alone. They may have different vitamins in them, but they are not an isolated vitamin.

Some of these common joint support ingredients and their benefits include:

  • GlucosamineGlucosamine is a chemical compound found naturally in your body that can be taken as a supplement, and that can help to reduce joint pain. There are two main glucosamine forms, which include hydrochloride and sulfate. Glucosamine also supports the health of cartilage in your joints, helping them retain their rubbery cushion.
  • Chondroitin – Chondroitin sulfate is a chemical that is found naturally around your joints, and there are studies that have shown that chondroitin sulfate can suppress inflammation. This is beneficial to joint health because inflammation can cause joint pains.
  • Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) – MSM is a chemical substance found in humans, animals, and green plants. MSM is known for improving pain and function of joints in the body. The molecule is small,  containing a bit of sulfur, and is related to dimethyl sulfoxide (DSMO) which is a compound used to reduce inflammation, and for its antioxidant properties.
  • Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables (ASU) – Studies have suggested that ASU is beneficial to those with arthritis in the knees. It is all natural and made from one-third avocado oil and two-thirds soybean oil.
  • Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFAs) – Polyunsaturated fatty acids are healthy fats, like avocado soybean unsaponifiables. They include fats such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
  • Ginger extractGinger extract is a substance extracted from ginger root that has anti-inflammatory properties and therapeutic benefits. Its pain relieving properties are provided from a natural source. Ginger extract may also help with morning stiffness, which is a common symptom of rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Cissus quadrangularis extractCissus quadrangularis is an extract that comes from the cissus quadrangularis plant, which is a plant that is related to the grape family. It has been used in Indian traditional medicine as a bone and joint health support for generations. It is packed with carotenoids, triterpenoids, vitamins, and minerals. It stimulates the production of osteoblasts, which improves bone growth and healing. It also has beneficial anti inflammatory properties.

These additional joint support ingredients work by reducing joint pain and inflammation. As you can see, they share many similar benefits and functions with good joint support vitamins. They work very well when they are combined with the best joint support vitamins, and these formulas make for the top joint support vitamins on the market.

Benefits of Joint Support Vitamins

Joint support vitamins and supplements can help provide multiple health benefits. Many of them have additional health benefits that come hand in hand with their benefits for joint health.  Powerful joint support vitamins and supplements provide a multitude of overarching health benefits while targeting the health of joints.

Who Can Benefit from Joint Support Vitamins?

  • Those with osteoarthritis (OA)Osteoarthritis is also called degenerative joint disease, because it is arthritis that develops over time from the wear and tear your joints experience throughout your life. OA occurs when the cartilage between your mobile joints breaks down, which causes pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility.
  • Those with rheumatoid arthritis (RA)Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that is caused by a damaged immune system which begins to attack the small joints in the wrists and hands, although it can affect other joints of the body as well. This leads to inflammation of these joints and causes chronic pain, stiffness, swelling, and reduced mobility. 75% of those afflicted by this disease are women.
  • Young people – Young people can benefit from joint support vitamins and supplements because they can help to keep joints healthier as you age. Osteoarthritis can form in our 20’s and 30’s, but young people won’t experience the pain of OA until they are much older.
  • Older people – Older people can benefit from these vitamins as well. Joint health supplements can aid to reduce the normal joint stiffness and aching that occurs when we age.
  • Athletes – Athletes are especially hard on their joints and can speed the development of joint problems due to their increased usage of their joints.

How to Take Joint Support Vitamins

Joint support vitamins have different formulas and therefore may have different recommendations for taking them. A general rule for vitamins and supplements is that if the ingredients are water soluble, the supplement does not have to be taken with food. If they are fat-soluble, they should be taken with food. Read the directions on the label in order to determine the best way to administer your joint support vitamins.

Are There Any Side Effects?

Some joint support vitamins may cause gastrointestinal side effects such as stomach upset, nausea, bloating, gas, diarrhea, etc. Side effects may differ for different formulas. Make sure to read the label on your joint support vitamins or supplements to determine possible side effects.

Things to Look for in a Good Joint Support Product

A good joint support vitamin should include quality ingredients that have evidence to back up their benefits, such as the ones we have listed in this guide. They should also include effective dosages of these ingredients, and have fully transparent labels, which means they do not hide ingredients beneath a proprietary complex.

They should also be manufactured by a reliable and reputable company, and be priced correctly for what they offer. Our list of the top 10 joint support vitamins will examine all of these aspects when evaluating each supplement.

Top 10 Joint Support Products Compared

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1. Universal Nutrition Animal Flex

Universal-Nutrition-Animal-Flex

Universal Nutrition Animal Flex is a formula intended to support ligament and joint health. This product comes in packs of joint support vitamins as one serving. It was awarded joint supplement of the year in 2006 due to its superior performance as a supplement. Their formula was intended for bodybuilders because these athletes put a lot of stress on their joints through heavy lifting.

It also includes top joint support vitamins such as vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, and manganese. Additionally, Animal Flex includes polyunsaturated fatty acids and and natural joint support extracts. Overall, this is a solid joint support vitamin on the market.

Highlights:

  • Great for athletes
  • Great supplement for young active people
  • Packed with antioxidants
  • Low calorie
  • Great value

What’s in it:

  • 3000 mg Joint Construction Complex, including glucosamine, MSM, Chondroitin Sulfate A, Chondroitin Sulfate B
  • 1000 mg Joint Lubrication Complex, including polyunsaturated fatty acids such as flaxseed oil
  • 1000 mg Joint Support Complex, including natural extracts such as ginger root extract and turmeric extract
  • Vitamins such as vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc, selenium, and manganese

Who makes it: Universal Nutrition is manufacturer of bodybuilding and sports nutrition supplements since 1977. Their products have a reputation of quality and affordability, and a loyal customer base. Animal Pak and Natural Sterol Complex are some of their most notable products. They were also one of the first companies in the sports nutrition industry to dedicate an entire product line to women.

Bottom line: This is one of the best joint support products on the market and includes nothing but beneficial joint support ingredients. Though it was designed and manufactured by a sports nutrition company, the product has diverse applications and can be beneficial to almost anyone’s health.

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2. NOW Glucosamine & Chondroitin with MSM

NOW-Glucosamine-and-Chondroitin-with-MSM

NOW Glucosamine & Chondroitin with MSM is an all natural, high quality joint health vitamin capsule that includes three strong joint support vitamin ingredients: Glucosamine, chondroitin, and methylsulfonylmethane (MSM).

The glucosamine and chondroitin included in this supplement are both 100% sulfate, which means they are the purest and most highly studied forms of these ingredients.

Highlights:

  • Includes effective doses of some of the best ingredients
  • All natural
  • Very affordable

What’s in it:

  • 1100 mg glucosamine sulfate
  • 1200 mg chondroitin sodium sulfate
  • 300 mg MSM

Who makes it: NOW Foods is a natural supplement producer with an infallible reputation for quality, consistency, and effectiveness. All of their products are entirely natural, and they ensure that the customer can trace every ingredient in their product back to its source. Their products formulas are all based in science and the needs of customers.

Bottom line: This is one of the most effective joint support vitamins available, and it is made by NOW Foods, so you know it is all natural and beneficial for your health. Anyone can reap the benefits of this joint support supplement for an affordable price. It is definitely one of the top joint support vitamins on our list.

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3. Labrada ElastiJoint

Labrada-ElastiJoint

Labrada ElastiJoint is a an overall good joint support supplement to consider. To take this supplement, mix this powder into your drink of choice.

Highlights:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antioxidant properties
  • High potency

What’s in it:

  • 5000 mg hydrolyzed gelatin
  • 2000 mg MSM
  • 1500 mg glucosamine sulfate (derived from shellfish)
  • 1200 mg chondroitin sulfate
  • 990 mg vitamin C
  • 125 mg sodium

Who makes it: Labrada is a sports nutrition supplement brand that has been serving customers for over 20 years. Their products use scientifically backed ingredients included at effective doses. They pride themselves on their transparency, and never hide ingredients under the guise of an undefined proprietary blend.

Bottom line: This product is a very effective joint support vitamin.

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4. Schiff Glucosamine Plus MSM

Schiff-Glucosamine-Plus-MSM

Schiff Glucosamine Plus MSM is a high potency glucosamine supplement that includes methylsulfonylmethane, or MSM, for additional joint health benefits. Overall, this joint support formula creates a top joint support vitamin in an easy to swallow tablet form.

Highlights:

  • Very affordable
  • Includes quality joint health ingredients
  • Easy to take
  • Company has been around since 1936

Drawbacks:

  • Serving size is 3 tablets to get the effective dosage

What’s in it:

  • 1500 mg glucosamine hydrochloride
  • 1500 mg MSM
  • 3 mg hyaluronic acid

Who makes it: Schiff Vitamins is a vitamin producer that has been in the business since 1936. They own Airborne, Move Free, Digestive Advantage, and MegaRed; which are all popular health supplement brands. They have been a well respected leader in the natural supplement industry. They follow GMP guidelines in the manufacturing process, and they use high quality ingredients.

Bottom line: Overall this product is a good joint support vitamin and uses quality joint support ingredients. The manufacturer has a great reputation and has been a leader in the industry for 70 years. It has all the necessary joint support benefits, but even though it does have an decent dosages per serving, a serving is three tablets. This may be cumbersome to some people.

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5. Infinite Labs Joint Support

Infinite-Labs-Joint-Support

Infinite Labs Joint Support is a strong joint support vitamin that comes in tablet form. Additionally, this product uses numerous natural extracts to enhance joint benefits, and these ingredients have additional benefits.

What’s in it:

  • 1500 mg glucosamine sulfate
  • 500 mg MSM
  • Extracts such as white willow bark extract, ginger extract, boswellia serrata extract, turmeric extract, etc.
  • 50 mg cayenne
  • 4 mg hyaluronic acid

Drawbacks:

  • Serving size is 3 tablets to get the effective dosage
  • Sour taste

Who makes it: Infinite Labs is a sports nutrition supplement producer that began in 2001 and was purchased in 2009. The company is committed to providing its customers with scientifically backed products that help them to achieve their fitness goals. Infinite Labs offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Bottom line: Overall, Infinite Labs has created a powerful joint support vitamin that is great for your health. It includes many beneficial joint support ingredients, and has additional health benefits from its natural extracts and addition of cayenne. However, it does take three tablets per dose, and the tablets taste kind of sour, which may be off-putting to some consumers.

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6. Natrol MSM & Glucosamine Capsules

Natrol-MSM-and-Glucosamine-Capsules

Natrol MSM & Glucosamine Capsules is a strong joint support vitamin made by a great company. As the name suggests, it includes glucosamine and MSM, two of the most effective joint support products. It’s a simple, no-frills formula.

Highlights:

  • 1170mg glucosamine
  • 500mg MSM
  • Simple and effective formula
  • Made by a great company
  • Very affordable

Drawbacks:

  • Only contains glucosamine and MSM

What’s in it:

  • 1170mg glucosamine
  • 500mg MSM

Who makes it: This product is made by Natrol, a large supplement and health product manufacturer. Founded in 1980, Natrol has spent the last several decades formulating high-quality health products, ranging from vitamins to weight control products to joint support blends. They are a well-known, reputable company with good products at reasonable prices.

Bottom line: Overall, this is a cheap, easy and good joint support supplement made by a great company. It’s a simple formula, containing only MSM and glucosamine, but these two ingredients are some of the most-researched joint support ingredients. There are other products with a much wider range of ingredients, but this is nonetheless a great joint support product.

7. MET-Rx Super Joint Guard

MET-Rx-Super-Joint-Guard

MET-Rx Super Joint Guard includes a proprietary joint support blend of glucosamine, MSM, and chondroitin. These three ingredients work together to support joint health.

What’s in it:

  • 2800 mg Super Joint Guard proprietary blend (includes glucosamine, MSM, and chondroitin sulfate)
  • 360 mg Ultra Omega 3-6-9 proprietary blend (includes flaxseed oil, fish oil, evening primrose oil, etc.
  • 4 mg boron

Drawbacks:

  • Includes proprietary blends
  • Serving size is four softgels

Who makes it: MET-Rx is an athletic supplement producer that made a name for itself with the introduction of a high quality protein powder over 20 years ago. They incorporate proprietary blends of quality ingredients formulated for health specific purposes. Ultimately, they focus on athletic improvement and enhancement through supplementation, although they produce a wide range of health products.

Bottom line: This is an effective joint supplement that includes a lot of great joint support ingredients. The included ingredients are definitely effective, and they even include boron, which is a mineral. However, to achieve the recommended serving size, you must take four softgels. Their formulas are also proprietary blends that do not detail how much of each ingredient is used.

8. Doctor’s Best Glucosamine Chondroitin MSM

Doctors-Best-Glucosamine-Chondroitin-MSM

Doctor’s Best Glucosamine Chondroitin MSM uses all three of the ingredients listed in its name. The glucosamine, chondroitin, and MSM all work together in gel capsules..

Glucosamine 2KCl is the version they use, which includes vitamins sodium, chloride, and potassium. Potassium is an electrolyte, and by including potassium this supplement ensures that your potassium levels will not dip too low and advance joint problems.

Highlights:

  • Joint & bone support
  • Antioxidant
  • No gluten or soy
  • No added flavors of colors

Drawbacks:

  • Lower doses
  • Must take two servings per day
  • Non vegetarian

What’s in it:

  • 750 mg glucosamine sulfate
  • 600 mg chondroitin sulfate
  • 500 mg MSM

Who makes it: Doctor’s best is a physician founded health supplement brand that has been in the industry since 1990. They offer more than 200 products formulated with mostly branded ingredients that have scientific research backing their efficacy and health claims.

Bottom line: This supplement provides the three top joint support vitamin ingredients at a relatively affordable price in gel capsule form. However, the doses are much lower than some alternatives, and you have to take two servings per day. It also advertises not including soy or gluten, but it is non vegetarian.

9. Bluebonnet Vegetarian Glucosamine MSM

Bluebonnet-Vegetarian-Glucosamine-MSM

Bluebonnet Vegetarian Glucosamine MSM is a joint health support supplement that comes in veggie capsule form. The glucosamine that is included in this joint support formula is a natural form derived from a vegetable source in a unique fermentation process. It has much of the same benefits that other supplements that include glucosamine and MSM.

Highlights:

  • Antioxidant
  • Vegan/vegetarian

Drawbacks:

What’s in it:

  • 1500 mg vegetable glucosamine
  • 1000 mg MSM

Who makes it: Bluebonnet is a natural supplement producer that has been in the market for over 25 years. They offer many vegetarian and kosher options for consumers that many other companies may not provide. They also provide non GMO options that other companies may not provide, tapping into a niche consumer base.

Bottom line: This product is a vegetarian and vegan joint support product, using a vegetable based form of glucosamine. It is made by a reliable manufacturer and provides a quality dose of MSM and glucosamine, however, the vegetable glucosamine used is less studied and causes more side effects than other forms. It is also a serving of three capsules.

10. Solgar Glucosamine MSM Complex

Solgar-Glucosamine-MSM-Complex

Solgar Glucosamine MSM Complex is a basic joint health supplement that is available at an affordable price. It includes glucosamine and MSM, as well as ginger extract and white willow extract with a 100 mg of vitamin C and 5 mg of manganese per serving. By supporting joint and bone health, this supplement is a good joint health vitamin.

Highlights:

  • Joint & bone support
  • Vegetarian

Drawbacks:

  • Serving size of 3 capsules
  • Coating dissolves quickly, making pills tough to swallow
  • Uses vegetarian glucosamine

What’s in it:

  • 1500 mg glucosamine hydrochloride
  • 1000 mg MSM
  • 108 mg ginger extract
  • 100 mg white willow extract

Who makes it: Solgar is a supplement producer that has been producing products for over 60 years. They brag a gold standard, which includes using researched ingredients, USP Water purification system, HEPA air filtration system, and other quality controls.

Bottom line: Overall, this is an affordable vegetarian joint support product, but it has a serving size of three capsules that are harder to swallow than some alternatives. The glucosamine used also is less studied, and has more side effects.

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