MSM is a nutritional supplement that can be administered in capsule or cream form. It stands for methylsulfonylmethane, which is a long-winded way of saying, ‘An organic compound that contains sulfur.’ Typically, when someone mentions sulfur, what comes to mind is the compound that smells like rotten eggs, but take heart: sulfur is actually an essential component of every living thing. This is where the benefits of MSM come in.
Natural supplements, as a general rule, exist to help put back important nutrients that your body needs. It’s quite common to hear about how much everyone needs calcium, vitamins and minerals, iron, essential fatty acids, etc., but sulfur is another very important component to overall health that you might not hear about as frequently. MSM is a natural source of sulfur, and since concentration of sulfur in the body tends to diminish as we get older, it’s a great idea to incorporate MSM supplementation into any strategy for maintaining good health.
Now, if you eat plants and animals, as most people do, then you might assume that you’re getting this important nutrient. But the sad truth is, a lot of people aren’t eating enough natural foods that are rich in sulfur, instead opting for a diet full of processed foods. And, although it is present in plants, sulfur is mainly found in meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and other dairy products. Eating a vegetarian or low-fat diet can put you in severe jeopardy of a sulfur deficiency, so be aware of this problem if you adhere to any kind of diet that minimizes your intake of protein.
Sulfur is a component of every living cell, and it aids in important bodily processes and materials, such as hormones, enzymes, antibodies, and antioxidants. You’ll find approximately half of all sulfur in the body concentrated in muscle, skin, bone, nail, and hair cells. Sulfur also makes up many amino acids, and it’s even instrumental in the production of insulin. Clearly, sulfur is a critical part of health, and MSM has been demonstrated to reliably provide this key nutrient.
One of the main benefits of MSM is its ability to make cell walls more permeable. What this means is that, instead of having rigid cells, you have cells where water and nutrients can enter freely, while toxins and waste are able to leave. The body is better able to heal itself and create new cells, and you’re less apt to hold on to harmful toxins.
Because of this detoxifying, anti-inflammatory effect, your body is better equipped to flush out allergens, which alleviates allergy symptoms. MSM is, in fact, comparable to antihistamines in terms of an effective treatment of allergies. MSM also eliminates free radicals, which are known to up the risk of cancer.
But MSM is perhaps most widely known for its use in treating osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is a condition that is recognized as a consequence of aging. In it, the joints are inflamed and outgrowths called osteophytes produce irritation, which causes more inflammation, and the process is repeated. Although there is no present cure for the condition, MSM is considered an effective treatment because it helps to deliver sulfur to maintain the structure of connective tissue in the joints.
Because sulfur is such a fundamental component of your cells, the benefits of MSM are numerous. If you want to enjoy better health, you might want to look into MSM and see if it’s right for you.