April 18 2014. In May 2010, Life Extension Update reported findings from a study of supplement users which found a reduced risk of dying in association with the use of glucosamine and chondroitin over a five year period. Now, in this month’s issue of Nature Communications, Michael Ristow and colleagues at the University of Jena offer a reason why.
In an earlier study, Dr Ristow found a reduction in life span among roundworms given a diet high in sugar, whereas impairment of carbohydrate metabolism resulted in improved survival. In the current research, the team found that the administration of glucosamine resulted in an increase in roundworm lifespan of 5% in comparison with no treatment. When glucosamine was given to 100 week old mice, those receiving the compound experienced an increase in life span of nearly 10%. Further investigation revealed that glucosamine increased the breakdown of amino acids, which is what occurs in the absence of dietary carbohydrates. “This reflects the metabolic state of a low-carb diet due to glucosamine supplementation alone – while these mice ingested the same amount of carbohydrates as their unsupplemented counterparts,” Dr Ristow explained.