Hyaluronic acid, also known as hyaluronan, is a clear, sticky substance produced naturally by your body. The skin, connective tissue, and eyes have the highest concentrations. Its main function is to retain water in order to keep tissues lubricated and wet. Hyaluronic acid is used in a variety of ways. Many people take it as a supplement, but it's also accessible in topical serums, ocular drops, and injections.
Benefits of Hyaluronic acid
- Promotes healthy and soft skin
Hyaluronic acid supplements may improve the appearance and feel of your skin. Approximately half of your body's hyaluronic acid is found in the skin, where it binds to water to help retain moisture. The natural aging process, as well as exposure to UV radiation from the sun, tobacco smoke, and pollution, can reduce its levels in the skin. By providing your body with extra amounts of hyaluronic acid to absorb into the skin, taking hyaluronic acid supplements may help to avoid this decline. In adults, daily doses of 120–240 mg for at least one month were demonstrated to dramatically enhance skin hydration and minimize dry skin. Hydrated skin also seems smoother, which could explain why multiple studies have shown that supplementing with it should make skin look smoother. When applied to the skin's surface, hyaluronic acid serums help reduce wrinkles, redness, and dermatitis. Some doctors use hyaluronic acid fillers to keep skin looking firm and youthful.
2. Speeds up the process of healing wounds
Hyaluronic acid is also important for wound healing. It's naturally found in the skin, but its levels rise when there's damage that needs to be repaired. Hyaluronic acid aids wound healing by reducing inflammation and telling the body to increase blood vessel growth in the injured area. It has been proven that applying it to skin wounds reduces wound size and discomfort faster than a sham or no therapy at all.
When administered directly to open wounds, hyaluronic acid also contains antibacterial characteristics, which can help lower the risk of infection. It also helps to treat gum disease, speed up recovery following dental surgery, and eliminate ulcers when applied topically in the mouth. While there is encouraging research on hyaluronic acid serums and gels, no research has been done to see if hyaluronic acid supplements can deliver the same advantages. Oral supplements, on either hand, have been shown to enhance hyaluronic acid levels in the skin, so it's reasonable to assume they'd be useful.3. Keeps joints lubricated thus reducing joint pain
Hyaluronic acid is also located in the joints, where it helps to lubricate the area between your bones. The bones are less prone to grind against one another and create discomfort when the joints are lubricated. Osteoarthritis, a type of degenerative joint condition caused by wear and strain on the joints over time, can benefit from hyaluronic acid supplementation.
In patients with osteoarthritis, taking 80–200 mg daily for the past two months has been proven to dramatically improve knee pain, especially in those between the ages of 40 and 70. For pain treatment, hyaluronic acid can also be directly injected into the joints. An investigation of almost 12,000 individuals, on the other hand, indicated only a minor reduction in pain and a higher risk of side effects. According to some studies, combining oral hyaluronic acid supplements alongside injections can help extend the pain-relieving effects and lengthen the time between doses.
4. Reduces acid reflux
Hyaluronic acid supplementation may help lessen acid reflux symptoms, according to new research. Acid reflux is a condition in which the contents of the stomach are rehashed up into the throat, causing inflammation and injury to the esophageal lining. Hyaluronic acid may assist to calm the esophageal lining and speed up the healing process. In one test-tube investigation, adding a mixture of hyaluronic acid and chondroitin sulfate to acid-damaged throat tissue aided healing significantly faster than when no treatment was applied.
Benefits have also been demonstrated in human trials. According to one study, taking a hyaluronic acid and chondroitin sulfate supplement coupled with an acid-reducer reduced reflux symptoms by 60% more than taking the acid-reducer alone. A second research found that the same substance was five times more efficient than a placebo at reducing acid reflux symptoms. This field of study is still in its early stages, and further research is needed to confirm these findings. Nonetheless, these results are encouraging.
Side effects and precautions
Hyaluronic acid is usually considered to be a relatively safe substance to consume, with very few known negative effects. Allergies are uncommon because they are produced naturally by the body. However, because its effects throughout pregnancy and nursing have not been well explored, it should be avoided by these groups. There's also evidence that cancer cells are susceptible to hyaluronic acid, and that supplementing with it can speed up their growth. As a result, it is typically recommended that people with cancer or a risk of cancer avoid taking it. Injections of hyaluronic acid into the skin or joints provide a higher risk of negative effects. Negative reactions, on the other hand, are usually linked to the injection method instead of hyaluronic acid itself.
Hyaluronic acid supplements, which have several health benefits, are safe for most people to take. Hyaluronic acid is well-known for its skin benefits, which include dry skin relief, fine line and wrinkle reduction, and wound healing acceleration. It may also aid in the relief of joint discomfort in persons suffering from osteoarthritis. Two more important applications are hyaluronic acid eye drops to ease dry eye and hyaluronic acid directly into the bladder via catheter to relieve pain. Hyaluronic acid is a good supplement for a variety of disorders, especially those that impact the skin and joints.