Chondroitin Supplements Cut With Inferior Substances

A third party laboratory charged with ensuring supplement ingredient consistency, ChromaDex, says more than half of chondroitin samples tested have been adulterated. Ingredient suppliers are substituting chondroitin with cheaper substances that are often ending up on store shelves across America.

The findings are confirmed by Consumer Reports October 2013 issue which revealed that 7 out of 16 glucosamine/chondroitin supplements tested did not contain the level of chondroitin claimed by the supplier.

We bought the supplements online or from stores in the New York area between August and October 2012. We had outside labs test samples representing three lots of each product. To meet our quality criteria, a product had to contain, on average, at least 90 percent of its labeled amounts of glucosamine and chondroitin; pass our dissolution test, based on the test used by the U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP), a nongovernmental standard-setting organization, where applicable (it applies only to tablets and caplets); and fall within acceptable limits for four heavy-metal contaminants: arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury. Those limits are set by the Environmental Protection Agency, the USP, and California’s Proposition 65.

All of the products contained their labeled amount of glucosamine. And none contained worrisome amounts of lead or other heavy metals.

But six products—CVS Triple Strength, Finest Natural Triple Strength (Walgreens), Natural Factors Glucosamine & Chondroitin Sulfates, Spring Valley Triple Strength (Walmart), Trigosamine Max Strength, and 365 Everyday Value Extra Strength (Whole Foods)—fell below their claimed levels of chondroitin, averaging only 79 to 87 percent of the labeled amount. A seventh product, Nature Made Triple Flex Triple Strength, averaged only 65 percent of its claimed chondroitin in our tests. The 365 Everyday Value and Trigosamine pills also didn’t dissolve sufficiently, which suggests that their ingredients might not be fully available for absorption in the body. We think there are better choices than those two.

Intentional adulteration constitutes fraud because consumers are not buying what they are promised.

supplement ingredients

The problem has increased despite the FDA’s years-old requirement that manufacturers of dietary supplements test their ingredients under what is called cGMPs – current good manufacturing processes.

The two biggest culprits are outsourced ingredients from as far away as India and China, and unreliable supplier testing methods.

Fortunately there is an alternative to chondroitin and glucosamine for joint health,  UC-II® collagen . UC-II® consists of undenatured type II collagen, a FDA-notified and published new dietary ingredient (NDI). UC-II® is manufactured in a GMP-certified facility and has been determined GRAS for use in foods and beverages..

A recent study of 600 joint pain sufferers from the NIH Osteoarthritis Initiative found that both Chondroitin or Glucosamine fail to address the root problem of joint pain symptoms and do not slow the progression of joint disease.  UC-II® collagen, by contrast, is proven twice as effective as Chondroitin and Glucosamine for joint comfort, joint flexibility, and joint cartilage health.  In fact, a much smaller dose of UC-II® collagen is still twice as effective as large doses of Chondroitin and Glucosamine.

Designed by world-class orthopedic doctors and made in America in world-class facilities, IBBH’s Joint Formula supplement uses a patented form of UC-II® collagen that is 100% unadulterated and verified with our product claims: improve joint comfort, increase flexibility, and support joint cartilage. Better ingredients, no manufacturing shortcuts.


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