The Ultimate Guide to the Best Joint Supplements: Relieve Pain and Support Joint Health

By Amber SmithJun 30, 2023 5:00 AM


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Joint pain can be a daily struggle for many individuals, impacting their quality of life and limiting their mobility. If you're looking for natural ways to alleviate joint pain and support joint health, you may consider incorporating joint supplements into your routine. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the best joint supplements available, their potential benefits, and important factors to consider when choosing the right supplement for you.

Understanding Joint Pain and the Importance of Joint Health

Before delving into the world of joint supplements, it's crucial to understand the underlying causes of joint pain and the significance of maintaining optimal joint health. Joint pain is commonly associated with arthritis, a condition that affects millions of Americans. Osteoarthritis, [1] the most prevalent form of arthritis, can lead to chronic joint pain and stiffness. Generally speaking this guide will focus around osteoarthritis, but most of the supplements will be suitable for rheumatoid arthritis [2], although not gout as some ingredients that are beneficial for OA and RA are not always effective. [3]

When the cartilage in your joints breaks down over time, it can result in inflammation, reduced mobility, and discomfort. [4] Taking steps to support joint health is essential for managing joint pain and maintaining an active lifestyle. Alongside a healthy lifestyle that includes regular exercise and a well-balanced diet, joint supplements can play a role in promoting joint health and alleviating pain.

The Best Joint Supplements for Alleviating Joint Pain 2023

While there are numerous joint supplements available on the market, it's important to choose supplements that have scientific evidence supporting their efficacy and safety. We will come on to talking about specific products shortly, but first we're going to start with the specific ingredients that have the most scientific backing.

However, if you want a quickfire list of the top 3 then we rate the best options as:

FlexAgain - Best Joint Supplement Overall

Elm & Rye - Best Single Ingredient Supplements For Joint Pain

Osteo Bi Flex - Best Budget Joint Supplement

Here are some of the ingredients that we expect to see in the top joint supplements. The following have all shown promise in relieving joint pain and supporting joint health:

1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids, commonly found in fish oil supplements, have been extensively studied for their anti-inflammatory properties. These fatty acids may help reduce joint pain, stiffness, and inflammation associated with conditions like arthritis. [5]

Incorporating omega-3 supplements into your routine, along with consuming fatty fish or algae-based sources of omega-3s, have a positive impact on relieving general joint pain as well as arthritis symptoms. [6] It's important to note that land based plant sources like flax seed are not likely to relieve joint pain, these do not contain EPA and DHA [7] (the omega oils that significantly decrease joint swelling) but rather ALA. The body has to break down ALA into EPA and DHA and more than 90% is lost. [8] Keep in mind that for it to be effective you need 1100mg of an algae or fish oil supplement.

Examples like Flax also contain a lot of Omega 6, [9] which can increase inflammation. In short, you should stick to fish oil or algae for your omega dietary supplements.

FlexAgain contains the ideal dose as well 7 of the other best joint supplement ingredients.

2. Turmeric (Curcumin)

Turmeric, a spice commonly found in curry dishes, has gained popularity as a natural remedy for joint pain. The active compound in turmeric, curcumin, has been shown to possess anti-inflammatory properties. [11] Although research on turmeric for joint pain is limited, studies have shown that it may improve symptoms of joint pain and inflammation, making it a potential supplement worth considering.

Curcumin when dosed at least 500mg has been shown that like omega it can also have an impact on severe joint pain. Although 1000mg does seem to be more effective. Trials did show that whilst it was not enough by itself, treating joint pain with a combination of curcumin and weaker pain relief was possible in cases of severe joint pain. [11]

Elm and Rye offer the best stand alone turmeric supplement right now.

3. Glucosamine

Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound in the body that plays a crucial role in maintaining the structure and function of joint cartilage. Supplementing with glucosamine has been shown to potentially alleviate joint pain and improve joint function, particularly in individuals with osteoarthritis or knee pain. [13] There are also several studies to suggest it slows the progression of the condition.

It is important to note that glucosamine is often derived from shellfish, so individuals with shellfish allergies should exercise caution or consider alternative sources of glucosamine. We did a round up of the best glucosamine supplements here. In many countries glucosamine and chondroitin are prescribed to treat joint pain.

4. Chondroitin

Chondroitin is another compound naturally found in the body's cartilage. It works in tandem with glucosamine to support the structure and function of joints. Research suggests that chondroitin supplements may help limit joint pain and improve joint mobility in individuals with osteoarthritis although only in conjunction with glucosamine as they work synergistically. [14] There is also some research that suggest it may also help prevent cartilage breakdown particularly in cases of osteoarthritis although the research is mixed on whether or not it does more than just soothe achy joints. [15]

5. Collagen

Collagen is a protein that provides support and structure to various tissues in the body, including joints and connective tissues. As we age, the production of collagen decreases, leading to joint stiffness and pain. [16] Supplementing with collagen may help replenish collagen levels, potentially reducing joint discomfort and improving joint flexibility. However, further research is needed to fully understand the efficacy of collagen supplements for joint health.

Independent studies have shown promising results for UC-II collagen in particular. This was generally used in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Patients with moderate-to-severe knee osteoarthritis who took UC-II collagen reported significant improvements in physical function, stiffness, and pain. [17]

6. Boswellia Serrata

Boswellia is a plant extract known for its potent anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to improve blood circulation.. Extracts from this resin have shown potential in reducing joint inflammation and relieving joint pain. [18] Boswellia Serrata supplements often contain a compound called AKBA, which has been shown to inhibit enzymes responsible for cartilage breakdown, protecting your connective tissue. [19]

7. Vitamin D

Vitamin D is essential for maintaining overall bone health, and it may also play a role in supporting joint health. [20] A lack of the vitamin can cause joint pain by itself. [21] And further studies have suggested that individuals with low levels of vitamin D may be more prone to pain as well as inflammation. [22] Supplementing with vitamin D, particularly in individuals with vitamin D deficiency, may help alleviate joint discomfort and improve joint function. And considering that around half of American adults over 55 are at least mildly deficient, [23] it makes it a good inclusion to your supplement regimen.

8. SAMe

SAMe (S-Adenosyl-L-Methionine) is a naturally occurring compound in the body that has been used as a supplement for various health conditions. Some research suggests that SAMe may have anti-inflammatory properties and potentially diminish joint pain associated with osteoarthritis. However, more studies are needed to determine the optimal dosage and long-term effects of SAMe for joint health. However, because you need grams and grams of SAMe it is generally recommended to be taken in powder form. [24]

9. Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect your cells from damage caused by free radicals. While its role in joint health is still being studied, research suggests that vitamin E may slow the progression of osteoarthritis and promote the growth of new cartilage cells. [25] Additionally, vitamin E supports overall immune system function. However, it's important to be cautious when taking vitamin E supplements, as they can interact with blood thinners and increase the risk of bleeding. Always consult with your healthcare provider before adding vitamin E supplements to your regimen.

10. Bromelain

Bromelain is a digestive enzyme taken from the pineapple plant, it works by preventing the body from making as many pro-inflammatory prostaglandins (meaning it breaks down the building blocks of things your body uses to cause inflammation before it can make them). It also produces something called cytokines, [26] these are one of the things that regulate the bodies inflammation response. It's been shown to be effective at treating inflammatory diseases with chronic pain symptoms. [27] Such as, inflammatory bowel disease and arthritis.

11. Resveratrol

Resveratrol is known by most people for it's cognitive effects and being researched to promote longevity and prevent mental decline. However, researchers noticed it seems to behave in a similar way to omega 3 fatty acids found in fish oil supplements. From there the question was whether or not it would have similar benefits to joint health as it does the brain. And whilst clinical research is still relatively new, it does seem that resveratrol is particularly effective for most joint pain relief. [28]

The Best Joint Supplement Brands

Now that you know what we're looking for when it comes to the ingredients that can reduce inflammation and offer pain relief to people struggling with joint pain, let's have a look at the products that make the best joint support supplements.

The Best Joint Supplement Overall – FlexAgain

FlexAgain take the top spot for a couple of very clear reasons, they contain almost all of the ingredients in our list with proven benefits, and in their clinically trialled dosages. As far as a catch all supplement goes you can't really do any better, they've got everything from omega 3 fatty acids (the right ones), through glucosamine sulfate, right down to resveratrol. To top that off they've got a 90 day money back guarantee a 4.8* rating on third party websites and we honestly don't have anything bad to say about the product.

The fact is that if there's a supplement that is going to improve joint pain and it can be put into a capsule, then it's probably in FlexAgain.

The only time we'd really recommend anything else is for cases when someone can't actually have one of the ingredients, for example FlexAgain contains shellfish extracts in it's glucosamine and chondroitin sources. So, it wouldn't be suitable for vegans or people with an allergy.

Check FlexAgain Deals

FlexAgain Ingredients

FlexAgain contains 1100mg of a DHA and EPA rich omega 3, which as we've mentioned has been demonstrated to reduce chronic pain in both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis sufferers. [5] It also has 500mg of curcumin, which has shown similar results for treating arthritis pain due to it's potent anti inflammatory effects. [11] Then we have glucosamine and chondroitin, which the body uses for cartilage and clinical research shows that this reduces joint pain. [13,14] It's even prescribed in a lot of countries for arthritis pain. We then have the lesser known anti inflammatory ingredients like Boswellia and Bromelain, which again are correctly dosed here. [18,26] And even the relatively newly studied resveratrol, [28] which has a host of health benefits beyond just improving joints. Interestingly it seems to be good for the brain as well, in the same way that omega 3 is and has a similar mechanism. There's also the vitamin and mineral blend which is of course a nice added extra especially considering around half of American's over 50 are vitamin D deficient. [23]

FlexAgain Customer Reviews

As we mentioned FlexAgain customer reviews are all in all fantastic, and we'd expect them to be based on the product quality. There is also the fact that after testing their customer service we can attest that they honor their money back guarantee promise. In which case you would expect that there not be any if many negative reviews.

FlexAgain Overall

All in all this is a great product which combats inflammation effectively, as well as being able to improve joint pain, improve mobility and offers a fantastic customer experience to top it all off. As far as we're concerned there's nothing to complain about here and we whole heartedly recommend FlexAgain.

There supplement is four pills a day, which can be a lot for some people, but considering the amount of ingredients in here, you'd expect that to be the case as they're correctly dosed.

FlexAgain scores:

Inflammation Relief: 10/10

Joint Health: 10/10

Mobility: 10/10

Value 10/10

Customer Satisfaction: 9/10

Overall: 10/10

The best FlexAgain deals can be found on their website with savings of up to $20 a bottle vs 3rd party sellers.

Check FlexAgain Deals Here --->

The Best Single Supplements - Elm & Rye

Elm and Rye offer a range of high quality single ingredient supplements for joint pain, meaning that they should be the go to if you're looking for a specific supplement. For example, their turmeric supplements contain a particularly high percentage of curcumin and they currently make the best collagen for joint pain.

The brand has long established itself as having a great reputation for using only high quality 3rd party tested ingredients. They're not the cheapest on the market, but like so many things you get what you pay for.

We're particularly keen on Elm and Rye's turmeric supplements.

Check Elm And Rye Deals

Elm & Rye Ingredients

Elm & Rye Turmeric Curcuminoids are a natural supplement that harnesses the anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric. This supplement contains a heft amount of curcuminoids, the active compounds in turmeric, which have been shown to reduce inflammation and improve blood circulation. [12, 29] Elm & Rye Turmeric Curcuminoids may be an effective option for individuals seeking natural relief from joint and muscle pain.

Elm & Rye Reviews

Elm & Rye customer reviews are generally very positive, whilst they're not on 3rd party sites, so we don't have amazon to check, scouring social media will generally show that there customer base is more than satisfied with very few negative comments.

Elm & Rye Overall

Elm & Rye are a great option overall, and we recommend them for everything from vitamin d, turmeric and collagen supplements for joint health. We'd rate them higher in all categories if we weren't comparing them against a combined supplement.

Elm & Rye Scores:

Inflammation Relief: 7/10

Joint Health: 7/10

Mobility: 8/10

Value 7/10

Customer Satisfaction: 9/10

Overall: 8/10

Check Elm & Rye Turmeric Deals --->

The Budget Joint Supplement Option - Osteo Bi Flex

Osteo Bi Flex make very solid glucosamine and chondroitin supplements with the occasional extra ingredient. There are a couple of different versions and some are better value than others, but most of them will set you back less than $25/month. Osteo Bi Flex as the name suggests is largely focused on treating osteoarthritis pain,. It's also worth noting that glucosamine sulfate supplements are particularly well studied for joint support targeting knee pain.

Osteo Bi Flex Ingredients

Generally we'd suggest getting Osteo Bi Flex Triple Strength with vitamin D. This contains glucosamine HCL, [30] a purer and stronger version of glucosamine sulfate supplements, chondroitin and boswellia. All ingredients on our best joint supplements list. They're all well dosed at this price point they're a great glucosamine and chondroitin supplement for joint support.

Osteo Bi Flex Reviews

Customers reviews are generally fantastic when it comes to this version of Osteo Bi Flex, not all of their variants are as good though. A few customers did report nausea, which isn't unheard of with such high doses of glucosamine HCL.

Osteo Bi Flex Overall

All in all these are great joint health supplements, particularly for osteoarthritis knee pain where glucosamine and chondroitin have been shown to be most effective.

Osteo bi Flex Scores:

Inflammation Relief: 7/10

Joint Health: 7/10

Mobility: 8/10

Value 10/10

Customer Satisfaction: 8/10

Overall: 8/10

Other Joint Supplements That Didn't Make The Top 3

YouTheory Joint Collagen Tablets Advanced Formula + Boswellia

YouTheory Joint Collagen Tablets Advanced Formula + Boswellia combine the benefits of collagen and boswellia to support joint. Collagen is a protein that plays a vital role in maintaining the structure and function of the joints. Boswellia, as mentioned earlier, has anti-inflammatory properties that can help alleviate joint pain. This supplement aims to improve joint mobility and reduce discomfort.

Tribe Organics Boswellia Complex Capsules

Tribe Organics Boswellia Complex Capsules utilize the power of boswellic acid to reduce inflammation and pain in the joints. Boswellia is a plant extract known for its potent anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to improve blood circulation. This supplement, combined with other beneficial nutrients, may provide relief for individuals struggling with joint pain.

Greenbush Natural Devil's Claw Vegetarian Capsules

Greenbush Natural Devil's Claw Vegetarian Capsules harness the power of devil's claw, a plant native to southern Africa. Devil's claw has been traditionally used for its anti-inflammatory properties and may help reduce joint pain and stiffness. [31] This supplement offers a natural alternative for individuals seeking relief from joint discomfort. It’s not the most well backed which is why it didn’t enter our top ingredients section, but the anecdotal evidence is good, so it could be worth a try for some.

Vital Proteins Cartilage Collagen

Vital Proteins Cartilage Collagen Peptides offer targeted support for joint health and function. This supplement contains collagen, a protein essential for maintaining the structure and integrity of the joints. Vital Proteins Cartilage Collagen Peptides may help reduce joint pain, improve joint mobility, and maintain healthy joints in general.

Nordic Naturals Vegan Omega 3 Supplement

Nordic natural supplements offer a great value option for people looking for an alternative to fish oil supplements, they contain a good dose of EPA and DHA meaning that you're getting exactly what you need. This simple and straight forward supplement is available at most major stores and from Amazon so it's easy to find. It does cost a little bit more than the none vegan option, but if you're trying to top up a vegetarian or vegan diet it's a great choice.

Vital Proteins Cartilage Collagen

Vital Proteins Cartilage Collagen Peptides offer targeted support for joint support and function. This supplement contains collagen, a protein essential for maintaining the structure and integrity of the joints. Vital Proteins Cartilage Collagen Peptides may help with both pain, improve joint movement, and support overall joint health.

Lake Avenue Nutrition PEA (Palmitoylethanolamide) Veggie Capsules

Lake Avenue Nutrition PEA (Palmitoylethanolamide) Veggie Capsules contain PEA, a fatty acid compound that has shown promise in reducing inflammation and pain. PEA acts on receptors in the body to regulate pain and inflammation pathways. [32] This supplement may provide relief for individuals with chronic joint issues.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Joint Supplement

When selecting a joint supplement, it's essential to consider several factors to ensure you're choosing a safe and effective product. Here are some key factors to keep in mind:

Quality and Purity

Opt for joint supplements from reputable brands that undergo rigorous testing to ensure quality and purity. Look for supplements that are manufactured in facilities that adhere to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and have third-party certifications for quality assurance.

Ingredients and Dosage

Carefully review the ingredients list and dosage instructions of any joint supplement you consider. Look for supplements that contain scientifically studied ingredients, preferably in clinically effective dosages. Consulting with a healthcare professional can help determine the appropriate dosage for your specific needs.

Potential Interactions and Side Effects

It's important to be aware of potential interactions between joint supplements and any medications you may be taking. Some supplements, such as glucosamine and turmeric, may interfere with blood-thinning medications or have adverse effects in individuals with certain medical conditions. Always consult with a healthcare professional before adding a supplement to your routine.

Scientific Evidence

Consider the available scientific evidence supporting the efficacy and safety of a joint supplement. Look for supplements that have been studied in well-designed clinical trials and have demonstrated positive results in relieving joint pain and promoting joint health.

Should I Worry About Joint Supplement Side Effects?

In general joint health supplements are only likely to have mild side effects and these are typically limited to nausea or other mild stomach issues. However, it is important to note that as glucosamine and chondroitin are common inclusions and are typically derived from shellfish, there is the possibility of allergic reactions.

On top of this we should also note, people are commonly sensitive to large doses of curcumin, this can be mitigated by taking your joint supplements with meals.

The Role of Lifestyle Changes in Joint Health

While joint health supplements can provide relief, it's important to note that they work best when combined with a healthy lifestyle. Making certain lifestyle changes can significantly contribute to improved joint health. Incorporating a well-balanced diet, engaging in regular low-impact exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, and avoiding activities that put excessive stress on the joints are all crucial for supporting joint health. By adopting these lifestyle changes, you can enhance the effectiveness of joint supplements and promote long-term joint well-being.

What Is The Best Joint Supplement? Conclusion

Joint pain can significantly impact daily life and hinder overall well-being. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution for joint problems, supplements can play a valuable role in managing symptoms and promoting joint health. Traditional supplements like glucosamine, chondroitin, and omega-fatty acids have demonstrated efficacy in reducing inflammation and alleviating joint pain. And if we had to pick a best joint supplement it would be FlexAgain, not only do they offer a great product at a great price, they have the most effectively dosed ingredients on the market right now and they offer a money back guarantee.

Supplements should be used as part of a complementary and integrative health approach, including regular exercise, a healthy diet, and appropriate medical treatment. Many of them can be used in conjunction with arthritis medications to result in less chronic pain.

By choosing the right dietary supplements for joint care and adopting a proactive approach to self-care, individuals can improve joint function, reduce discomfort, and reclaim an active and fulfilling lifestyle.


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