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MSM Supplement FAQ's

1. What is MSM?

(Methylsulfonylmethane) - is a naturally occurring sulfur compound found within our bodies. It is a safe and natural, assimilable food derived from the ocean.  MSM is neither a medicine, drug, chemical, herb, stimulant, synthetic food or additive. It is a member of the sulfur family but should never be confused with sulfa drugs, to which some people are allergic. It is completely safe, odorless, and non-toxic.  A 160 pound man has approximately 4 pounds of sulfur as body weight.  MSM is a natural organic compound.  It occurs naturally in the foods we eat but disappears when we process our food.  


2. Where does MSM come from?

MSM is a naturally occurring, sulfur containing organic compound found primarily in fresh fruits and vegetables and in every cell of the human body.  MSM is found in raw vegetables including broccoli, peppers, Brussels sprouts, onions, asparagus and cabbage. The highest natural concentration of MSM is found in mammal's milk. MSM is an organic compound and commercial MSM is a pure, simple molecule that is indistinguishable from a molecule of MSM found in nature. MSM is derived from DMSO.  MSM occurs when DMSO is oxidized.  MSM is a naturally occurring compound found in significant amounts in nerve tissue, skin, hair and joints. 
MSM is a naturally-occurring nutrient found in small amounts of many foods. As a dietary supplement, MSM is synthesized. When made correctly, it is identical to that found in nature.


3. Why use MSM instead of DMSO?

DMSO causes some side effects such as reddening and itching of the skin, nasal congestion, shortness of breath, excess intestinal gas, and allergic reactions. DMSO has a strong sulfur odor resulting in a garlic smell. None of the side effects are dangerous just unpleasant. MSM is safe and odorless and does not have the side effects as DMSO. However, one property of DMSO when applied externally acts as a powerful carrier for other substances, including toxic ones. These substances are carried into the body through the skin and mucous membranes, where they can do damage. DMSO is sold from commercial outlets mainly for industrial and animal use only and should always be handled with care.

4. Who discovered MSM?

MSM was discovered by two doctors. Stanley Jacob, MD. of the Oregon Health Sciences University in Portland and his associate, Robert Herschler, a research chemist for a paper manufacturing company. They both concluded that MSM is the main healing element of DMSO. Their research revealed that MSM, or methylsulfonylmethane, is a natural sulfur compound found in all living things. It is actually one of the most prominent compounds in our bodies, just behind water and sodium. However, in his research, Dr. Jacob determined that the sulfur in MSM, called sulfonyl, is as safe and as important as Vitamin C in our diet, unlike the bad sulfurs, sulfas, sulfites and sulfides.

5. What happens if my body does not get enough sulfur?

Sulfur is found naturally in the human body. Sulfur is stored in every cell of the body. Your body won't be able to repair or replace damaged tissue fast enough. If this occurs, the body compensates by producing abnormal cells that may lead to illness and disease. You will also experience a sensitivity to pain. Sulfur deficiencies are also associated with gastrointestinal problems, a poor immune system, arthritis, and rheumatism, memory loss and acne. It can also lead to brittle nails and hair, dermatological problems and dry skin.

6. What are the available forms of MSM?

MSM comes in forms of capsules, crystals, flakes, powder, tablets, lotion and gel.  Their is no difference in e
ither form for they are all the same product.  Just different forms. 

7. How much MSM should I take and in what form?

You should take whatever form is convenient for you.   You should always take the least possible amount of msm that gives you the relief you desire. Drink lots of water with msm.  For first time users of MSM,  it is better to take with meals to help prevent heartburn.  First time users start at a low level and build up.  Try 1000 mg or (eighth to a quarter teaspoon) per day.  Take it for that way for one week then increase it another a little more.  Once you have taken it a long time you will be able to take it without food.  The recommended dosage is 2,000 to 6,000 mg. per day, depending on your gastrointestinal tolerance. Please be aware that a single dose of MSM will not help!   The recommended dosage for a  person weighing 150 lbs. should begin by taking 1/2 teaspoon once in the morning and mid afternoon. MSM needs to be taken for at least 1-2 weeks or even up to two month before you may see results. When  MSM is taken by mouth with meals whether it be  capsule, crystal, flake, powder or tablet form, the body will distribute MSM where it is needed. The precise dose of MSM is not really that critical. For the first week or two, larger doses of MSM may be needed to compensate for an extreme deficiency and depending on your situation . 

8. Is sulfur the same as sulfa drugs and sulfites?

No. Organic sulfur is a nutrient, a necessary part of natural chemical processes in the body. It should not be confused with sulfa-based drugs or sulfites, which are forms of inorganic sulfur. Sulfa drugs are synthetic, meaning that they do not occur naturally.
 Sulfa drugs are sulfites.  MSM is a sulfur compound, but is not a sulfite.
They are used for the purposes as antibiotics, which in some people cause allergic reactions.  The body produces sulfites in its normal metabolism of sulfur containing amino acids. Sulfite compounds have been used for more than 300 years and are considered safe. If you are sensitive to sulfur based preservatives watch out for these names: sulfur dioxide, sodium sulfite, sodium bisulfite, sodium metabisulfite, potassium bisulfite and potassium metabisulfite.  

9. How does MSM help the skin?

MSM is great for your skin if you have acne. MSM acts to keep the skin's cells and the tissue soft. Keeping the skin soft ensures that it remains elastic enough to allow stretching and movement without damage. Smooth, flexible skin is less prone to wrinkles and dry flakiness. It even helps stretch marks. MSM benefits the skin and internal organs. Try MSM soap on your face. It leaves it smooth and soft and helps with acne.

10. How does MSM help your hair and nails?

Sulfur helps the body to form keratin, the protein that makes up the main part of the outermost layers of your hair and nails. It is a tough, fibrous protein that is very resilient to the effects of damaging chemicals and other harmful agents. Each strand of hair has its own keratin supply, which is stored in the root. Sulfur is also contained in biotin, a B vitamin that is essential for shiny hair and strong nails. You may be interested to know that the natural inclination of hair to be straight or curly is maintained in part by the sulfur amino acids. MSM benefits dry scalp and hair and improves nail growth and benefits your cuticles and nails.  My nails are nice and strong now along with being whiter!  

11. How does MSM help alleviate pain?

When the body's cell walls are supple, fluids can easily pass out of the cell, resulting in equalized pressure inside and outside the cell. It is the difference of pressure that causes pain and inflammation. By equalizing the pressure, MSM helps to reduce pain and inflammation. MSM can relieve post-athletic fatigue along with relieving muscle pain and cramps.

12.  When buying MSM what should I look for?

When buying MSM be sure to look for the U.S. patent numbers licensed by Dr. Robert Herschler: 5, 71, 878;4, 973, 605;4, 863, 748;4, 16, 039, 4, 568, 547;4, 599, 329;4, 514, 421;4, 477, 469;4, 296, 130. This is the only pure MSM on the market. I won't buy MSM from India, China, Japan or Canada.  They are known for adding fillers to their msm products.  If you do, ask for their certificate of analysis, check the melting point.

13.  Is MSM safe for my pets?

Horse trainers give MSM to their racehorses before races to prevent the buildup of lactic acid in muscles, which causes stiffness and cramps after exercising. Use of MSM to your pets can enhance their overall health. They will acquire attractive glossy coats, and strong toenails.

15.   Is safe to mix MSM with other prescribed medications? 
 
MSM has been observed in clinical settings some indications that it may have a blood-thinning, aspirin like effect on platelet aggregation. Therefore, you should consult your doctor if you are taking high doses of aspirin, or blood-thinning medication such as heparin or dicumarol.

16. Are capsules just as effective as MSM powder form?

Msm in the capsule form is fine for someone taking low dosages simply as a nutritional supplement on a daily basis. But or someone with health problems such as allergies, arthritis, diabetes, etc.  They would have to take large numbers of capsules to get the same effect that they would get by taking 2 to 5 teaspoons of the msm powder. Msm dissolved into water can be consumed over a 12 hour time period, which is the most effective way to take the mineral sulfur and is the most cost effective. It is recommended that you start out by taking 2-3 capsules then build up to 6 capsules a day.

17.  What is the difference between taking MSM flakes, capsules versus MSM powder form versus MSM tablet form?

Studies have shown people receive better results from taking MSM in the powder, crystal or flake form rather in the -capsule or tablet form.  Any form you take of MSM (meaning capsule, crystal, flake, powder) will be helpful. Capsules or tablets would be my last choice due to the fact they take the longest to digest because they come compressed which takes longer to dissolve in the stomach.  A lot of people prefer to carry capsules to work just because it is more convenient.


18. What is the dosage breakdown for teaspoons per grams and mg.

Level kitchen teaspoon =  5 grams  (5,000 mg.)

Level tablespoon = 15 grams (15,000 mg.)

Pharmacist's teaspoon holds about 4 grams (4,000 mg.)


19. Is it safe to take Glucosamine with MSM?

Yes they work well together. Glucosamine plays an integral role in the formation of ligaments, tendons and is more effective than NSAIDs.  Glucosamine makes cartilage strong, healthy and resilient.   Glucosamine reduces inflammation, and studies show glucosamine to have no known side effects.  Glucosamine also contributes to the growth of new cartilage.  But keep in mind that glucosamine  is a charged sugar molecule and if you are a diabetic you must watch your sugar intake.  

20. Is it safe to take MSM during pregnancy?

 My suggestion is that pregnant or nursing women should always consult their physician.

21.
Do I have to take Vitamin C with MSM supplements?

You do not have to take vitamin C along with MSM dietary supplements in order for MSM to work better.  If you are unable to take vitamin C, MSM still works for you.  Vitamin C is still a great dietary supplement though and can enhance recovery! 

22. Why is MSM Supplements Center prices higher than those at a health food store?

You are paying for quality MSM.  Arthritis MSM Supplement Center only sells pure OPTIMSM.  A lot of health food stores and other chains usually contain fillers within their product because of who they buy their product from.  To compare quality simply ask the health food store for the certificate of analysis for this product and see for yourself.  Look for the logo. MSM We use OptiMSM in all our MSM products.


23.
Why does MSM work for some people and not for others?

Remember each of us are unique in our way with different genetic makeup, sizes, hormones, energy levels, tolerances, etc.  Since we are different our bodies react differently to medications.  You may only require one teaspoon of msm whereas another person may need two tablespoons so that you both feel the same effect.

24. How much MSM should I take once I start my general maintenance?

Taking  2 grams or 2,000 mg.  is adequate.

25. How much should I take during pollen season to relieve my allergies?

Higher dosages are necessary in order to give you relief from sneezing, runny nose and burning eyes.   
 

26. Can I take MSM if I am allergic to sulfa drugs?

Yes!  Sulfa drugs are a totally different product.  There are no studies that show anyone being allergic to msm.  MSM dietary supplements are necessary for life just like water is and no one is allergic to water.   

27. Why don't doctors recommend MSM?

Very few doctors will because the American Medical Association does not endorse, nor do the Pharmaceutical Companies produce, MSM.  This does not mean that there is NO cure for your disease, there certainly may very well be, and it may have existed from the beginning of time itself.  This only means that within the politics of the current medical bureaucracy, doctors are instructed to tell you that there in NO cure for your disease.  

28. When buying MSM how can I tell if the product is made with OptiMSM?

Easy! Simply look for the bold OptiMSM logo on the products you buy to show you are getting the original patented, tested, and licensed MSM. The logo may be found on the front or the back of the packaging.  MSM Supplements Center only sells products with the OptiMSM trademark.

29.  Are there any food sources of MSM?

Yes there is.  MSM occurs naturally in the environment, and is present in rainwater, and is absorbed by plants. Small amounts of MSM are available in fresh fruits, grains, vegetables and even un-pasteurized milk because of the way we process our food. Unfortunately, MSM is chemically altered and destroyed when foods are processed, heated, or dehydrated. So your most reliable dietary source for adequate MSM intake is through supplementation.

30.  Has OptiMSM been scientifically researched?

Yes.  Dr. Stanley W. Jacob and his associates have been working with DMSO and MSM for more than 30 years. During their research, they discovered that a portion of the DMSO was converted to MSM in the body. MSM turned out to be a more stable metabolite of DMSO with similar properties. There were an estimated 50,000 articles published on DMSO, but only a handful have ever been repeated with MSM. Physicians and other health care providers have relied primarily on previous DMSO studies, lower animal studies with MSM, as well as MSM case studies and anecdotal reports.  Read The MIRACLE OF MSM BOOK.

31.  Who can take MSM?

Everyone because organic sulfur is a basic component for overall human wellness, everyone can benefit from supplementing their diets with MSM.  Please consult your physician before using MSM if you are pregnant, while nursing or for children under 2 years of age or have heart  problems.

32.  What makes OptiMSM superior to other kinds of MSM?

OptiMSM is the original MSM available in the United States patented as safe for human biological use. If you don't see the OptiMSM logo, you can't be certain you are getting 99.9% pure, safe, and effective OptiMSM. Look for the patented number and ask for certificate of analysis. OptiMSM is manufactured in the United States according to strict manufacturing standards. You can be confident that the product you are taking was made with pure, food-quality MSM. MSM used in other products may contain impurities or contaminants of any kind.

33.  Is MSM and MSG the same thing?

No! MSG is a taste enhancing agent that frequently causes allergic reactions known as the Chinese Restaurant syndrome.  MSM and MSG are not related.

34. Has MSM deficiencies been measured in humans?

Deficiencies of msm have not been measured in people.

35. Can MSM help athletic performance?

MSM you recover quicker from demanding physical exertion. MSM helps reduce muscle soreness which may enhance your performance. 

36. Why are MSM crystals now called MSM flakes?

The term flake replaces the word crystal, which previously had been used because of MSM's crystalline appearance.  The change represents a more accurate description of the manufacturing process and its physical characteristics.  When making MSM the manufacturing process involves distillation and flaking, not crystallization and drying. Some people define natural as a substance that occurs naturally in the body and in plants.  By that definition, MSM is natural.  The raw material used to produce OPTIMSM is of natural origin. So it is true that OPTIMSM is produced from natural sources. 

37. Is OPTIMSM a natural substance?

Some people define natural as a substance that occurs naturally in the body and in plants.  By that definition, MSM is natural.  The raw material used to produce OPTIMSM is of natural origin. So it is true that OPTIMSM is produced from natural sources. 

38. Is MSM safe for my child to take?

Most children don't need MSM.  Those who are afflicted with ailments such as allergies, asthma or inflammation from juvenile rheumatoid arthritis at an early age can take MSM.  Studies have shown that many children have taken high dosages of msm without any problems.

39.  Is your MSM patented? What are these patents?

The patent issue is currently a hot topic as one manufacturer Cardinal Nutrition (which is our supplier) pays royalties to MSM Investments Company, LLC. which is the current patent holder, and the other Carolwood Corporation does not, claiming that the existing patents have either expired or are invalid.  Note that neither manufacturer is the patent holder. Our MSM product is licensed by R.J. Heschler under the following U.S. PATENTS:
5,071,878;4,973,605;4,863,748;4,616,039;4,568,547;4,599329;4,514,
421;4,477,469;4,296,130 and all foreign counterparts.

40.  How long does it take vitamins and supplements to take affect?

90 days

41.  Are you confused on how to take the correct msm dosage?

Get a Whiskey Shot Glass for MSM perfect measuring of dosage? 
No more wondering how much water to take with your msm.  Just fill the  whiskey shot glass full with water along with the desired msm dosage and chug.  

42. Does msm cause a person to have gas? Also if I stop taking msm for four days will I continue to have intestinal problems?

MSM stands for methylsulfonylmethane. However, this name is a bit confusing to some people, since there is no methane in the compound. The more proper chemical name for MSM is dimethyl sulfone. Taking any form of MSM is not known to increase methane production in the intestinal tract. However, some people do experience gas after taking MSM, regardless of the brand. This is common with other sulfur-containing compounds and foods as well (e.g., cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower). It is recommend that you divide your daily supplement into smaller doses and taking them with food. Also, consider that the problem is not related to MSM. It seems highly unlikely that MSM could cause intestinal gas four days after the supplement is discontinued. The MSM simply aggravated an existing problem? In any event, certain 'carminative' herbs might be helpful in relieving gas. Recommended favorites are caraway and fennel seeds. Just take a 1/2 teaspoon of each and chew them, but this is not for everybody. You can also brew them in chamomile tea. If intestinal gas occurs just reduce your dosage.

43. What is the safety of one using MSM as a dietary supplement. 

OptiMSM has a long history of safe use, and has not been reported to cause any significant adverse effects or drug interactions.

44. Will MSM keep me awake at night?

Yes. Once msm starts to works you will experience more energy and if you take msm late at night you may find that you cannot sleep. Try to take your msm only during the morning or early afternoon. If you are a night owl it will benefit you even more.

45. Will MSM work for me?

Results may vary per person. Do not give up on your msm until you have completed your first full product that you bought.  Take it daily for better results.

46. Does msm go bad when it starts to clump in the container?

No, that is the nature of the product.  MSM contains no fillers and may at times clump in the container.  Do not be alarmed. Just break it up with you hand or sift it. 

47. Can I take msm and blood thinning agents together? 

If msm is taken along with proven blood thinning agents, an accelerated blood thinning effect cannot be ruled out.  Indications of such an effect might be the development of bruises on the body or increased bleeding from hemorrhoids. If you are taking blood thinning agents we recommend that you consult your doctor. If your doctor approves start out with a low dosage of msm like one gram a day then increase the dosage.  Have your coagulation parameters monitored frequently. If any signs of bleeding appear consult your doctor immediately.

48. Should I stop taking msm before surgery?

Yes, it is recommended that you stop taking msm 4 days prior to surgery.  That way there are no problems wondering if msm created any problems..

49. Does MSM interfere with blood tests?

There have been numerous blood chemical workups on patients and msm has not been found to not cause any abnormal readings...with one exception... If you are scheduled to take a liver enzyme test stop taking msm 4 days before your test so that you don't have a misreading such as a false positive.  MSM does not cause liver damage.  You can start back on your msm after the results have come in. 

50. What room temperature do I keep my msm at?

Anywhere from 78 to 82 degrees. Do not store in damp place or leave the lid off. MSM is one of the most stable of all materials.  It will NOT deteriorate with storage in room temperature, even if it is left in an open container it will not absorb moisture and will not be harmed or ruined. Do not put MSM in your freezer or refrigerator or freezing areas, for it will crystallize.

51. What is the shelf life for MSM?

The shelf life of MSM in general is two years, but tests have shown no loss of potency or deterioration in MSM in five years. 

52.  Why do we need sulfur?

Sulfur is needed to form blood proteins and amino acids, Sulfur provides the chemical links needed to form collagen, the protein found in connective tissue.  Sulfur is an important component in insulin production. Sulfur aids in carbohydrate metabolism.  Sulfur is used by the liver to manufacture bile, a necessary element for proper digestion.  Sulfur is essential for healthy hair, skin, and nails.  Sulfur is essential in maintain body pH, the acid-alkaline balance. Sulfur activates and helps the body utilize Vitamin C, B1, B5 and biotin.

53. Can children with fibromyalgia take msm?

Children's complaints of pain must be taken seriously. Growing pains are a myth. It should not hurt to grow, and a child that complains of pain should not be ignored.. Children's complaints need to be taken seriously. Fibromyalgia can make a child's life miserable at school and on the playground. Yes children can take msm for fibromyalgia.  

54. Does it help to use MSM in bath water?

Yes, msm is in bath water is a great way to help with aches and pains. There are no demands for msm bath salts and the cheapest way to make your own is to buy Epsom salt and msm crystals and mix together in a tub of water. Try using a cup of crystals and a cup of Epsom salt to your hot bath water.

55. How long will a 1 lb. jar of msm last me?

The MSM powder or crystal flakes should last you the following number of days based upon taking 4,000 milligrams (a little less than a level teaspoon) a day. 1 pound - 452 grams should last you 113 days.

56. What is Lignisul MSM?

Lignisul is just a brand name of MSM sold by Carrolwood. The word lignisul does not mean pure MSM. Lingni comes from LIGNIN which is the dissolved substance in the waste product of paper making.  The MSM source for msm supplements is often lignin from pine trees. Lignin is a molecule in plants that is part of a plant's cell wall. Lignin oxidation in oak wine barrels results in the vanilla flavors of wines.

57. What are the ingredients in Veggie Capsules?

The ingredient is a veggie capsule is microcrystalline cellulose which is plant derived.

58. What is in a regular capsule?

A regular capsule is made from gelatin and water.

59. Does MSM lose it strength when heated?

No it does not lose strength when heated.  MSM is proved to be non volatile. Heat does not harm OPTIMSM.

 



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Disclaimer: The information provided to you in this website has been compiled from numerous journals, research papers and studies for the sole purpose of offering consumers and professionals like you information about our MSM products.  None of the information herein should be construed as a claim for cure, prevention or treatment of any disease.  The statements in this website may be produced in any manner for public or private use without written consent from  MSM Supplements, Inc.  1-800-903-0309.  Copyright 2001.The above statement has not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.