Hyaluronic Acid plays a critical role in healthy movement throughout our lifetime. As we grow older, discomfort can begin and joints can experience limitations in movement. Maintaining healthy levels of Hyaluronic Acid in our joints and bodies is one way to support healthy joints and flexibility as we age.
Healthy Joint Mobility
Our joints are surrounded by a synovial membrane, which forms a capsule around the ends of two articulating bones, and Hyaluronic Acid is a major component of the synovial fluid that lubricates this joint capsule and provides cushion.
Hyaluronic Acid is to our joints as motor oil is to a car’s engine: it provides lubrication to keep the parts running smoothly without grinding against each other. Similarly, as we age, the viscosity of synovial joint fluid lessens. We need to maintain healthy levels of HA in the body, just as we might top off our car’s oil reservoir.
High molecular weight HA found in the body binds together to provide cushion and support for key areas of the body. But when the high molecular weight breaks down, or if the body tries to absorb lower molecular weight HA through supplementation, its ability to provide that support and cushion can lessen. The fluid becomes thinner and more water like, making it less able to cushion the joints.
Connective Tissue Connection
Connective tissue is found everywhere in the body. It does much more than connect body parts; it has many forms and functions. Its major functions include binding, support, protection, and insulation. One such example of connective tissue is the cord-like structures that connect muscle to bone (tendons) and bone to bone (ligaments). In all connective tissue there are three structural elements. They are ground substance (Hyaluronic Acid), stretchy fibers (collagen and elastin) and a fundamental cell type.
Whereas all other primary tissues in the body are composed mainly of living cells, connective tissues are composed largely of a nonliving ground substance (HA), which separates and cushions the living cells of the connective tissue. The separation and cushioning allow the tissue to bear weight, withstand great tension and endure abuses that no other body tissue could. All of this is made possible because of the presence of the Hyaluronic Acid and its ability to form the gelatinous ground substance fluid.
Ultimately, Hyaluronic Acid serves to keep tendons and ligaments hydrated and nourished—and the presence of Hyaluronic Acid helps lessen friction and is an important component in maintaining healthy mobility.
In addition to Hyaluronic Acid’s rich synovial fluid’s elastic, shock-absorbing and lubricating properties, it carries nutrients to the cartilage and removes waste from the joint capsule. As cartilage is without blood flow, the synovial fluid’s HA helps perform these functions in the body.
Since we lose Hyaluronic Acid as we age, it’s not surprising that research has shown that the joint fluid of people with joint health needs have lower levels of HA. Supporting the body’s production of Hyaluronic Acid, or increasing the presence of Hyaluronic Acid through supplementation, appears to be a logical means to support joint health. Multiple studies show that those with joint health needs may benefit from Hyaluronic Acid as it supports normal joint cushioning. Fortunately, Hyaluronic Acid is available to everyone who wishes to support joint health.
Individuals wishing to maintain healthy joints can do so easily, conveniently and affordably by supplementing with HA.