MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) is a source of natural sulphur, found in many foods such as fresh vegetables, meat, seeds, nuts and dairy products. It used to treat many ailments such as arthritis, joint pain, muscle recovery and allergy relief, many of its benefits are believed to be linked to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Treats osteoarthritis and joint pain
MSM is most well-known for decreasing joint or muscle pain. People who suffer with osteoarthritis or joint degeneration – a common cause of pain in the knees, back, hands and hips – have seen benefits from taking MSM. Studies have shown that MSM reduces inflammation significantly in the body, whilst also restraining the breakdown of cartilage.
One particular study found that a group of people who took an MSM supplement for twelve weeks experienced improvement in joint pain, stiffness and swelling.
May improve skin health
MSM may be beneficial for hair, skin and nails due to its sulphur content. Keratin contains high level of amino acid cysteine, which contains sulphur. MSM is able to act as a sulphur donor to keratin, therefore helping to strengthen this important protein. As MSM also helps reduce inflammation, it can also reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
Studies also show that it may even reduce the symptoms of problematic skin conditions such as rosacea, when applied to the skin.
Promoting recovery after exercise
Although necessary for good health, exercise can cause oxidative stress to muscles and tissues – resulting in temporary soreness after a workout. Some research shows MSM supplements could help post-exercise pain. One suggests that taking an MSM supplement helped reduce biomarkers or oxidative stress after exercise, as well as increasing the amount of antioxidants in the body. Another study found that people who took MSM before running a half-marathon experienced less muscle and joint pain than those taking a placebo.