Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a glycosaminoglycan or GAG that acts as the intracellular cement or glue of connective tissue. As its name implies, connective tissue serves a “connecting” function in supporting and binding other tissues. The loose connective tissue holds the skin and internal organs in place while the fibrous connective includes tendons, ligaments, and cartilage. In essence hyaluronic acid not only helps to provide the structural framework of connective tissue, it is the actual “glue” that holds our body together.
Maintaining HA in body tissues is an important anti-aging strategy (one of the reasons we show wrinkles in the skin is loss of HA). After the age of 45 or so, HA levels in the skin begin to plummet. By a time most people reach the age of 70, the HA content in their body has dropped by 80% from when they were 40.
Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid:
Researchers are only beginning to discover the health benefits of hyaluronic acid (HA) supplementation. Confirmed clinical benefits include:
- Patients with osteoarthritis who were suffering from severe pain given 200 mg per day of Hyabest® J for 8-weeks demonstrated significant improvement over the placebo group.1
- Patients with dry and rough skin given 120 mg daily of Hyabest-S (a.k.a. Hyaluronsan-LF) patients demonstrated an incredible ability to increase the moisture content of the skin resulting in a dramatic improvement in the skin’s appearance.
- The moisture content of the skin increased by over 46% over baseline values in subjects with dry skin given Hyabest-S.
The benefits of HA supplementation appear to go beyond restoring tissue HA levels. In a new study in mice, orally administered HA was shown reduce the formation and release of powerful inflammatory molecules known as cytokines by cells that line the intestinal tract. The researchers believe that HA may turn out to be a valuable aid in the treatment of systemic inflammation especially when it is due to autoimmune processes (e.g., rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, etc.)
Asari A, Kanemitsu T, Kurihara H. Oral administration of high molecular weight hyaluronan (900 kDa) controls immune system via Toll-like receptor 4 in the intestinal epithelium. J Biol Chem. 2010 Aug 6;285(32):24751-8.