Regular use of glucosamine, chondroitin, or fish oil supplements reduces high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) by 16% to 22%, a marker of inflammation, according to a new study. Inflammation is now recognized as a factor in cancer and cardiovascular disease as well as many rheumatoid diseases. A number of over-the-counter dietary supplements are being marketed for the purpose of reducing inflammation, but data supporting the claims are limited.
To address this situation, Elizabeth D. Kantor, from the Division of Public Health Sciences, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington, and colleagues analyzed data on dietary supplements and hs-CRP in 9947 participants in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. In their article, published online November 8 in the American Journal of Epidemiology, the researchers report that regular use of glucosamine, chondroitin, or fish oil significantly reduced serum hs-CRP.