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IGF-1 and Arthritis

What is arthritis?

A man suffering from joint pain uses deer antler velvet to alleviate pain.

Arthritis refers to any joint pain, inflammation, or disease affecting the joints. Arthritis is very common among adults, and nearly all adults over age 60 have arthritis to some degree. Meanwhile, arthritis can also be found in people under age 16, which is referred to as juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). 

Common symptoms of arthritis include pain or swelling of the joints, stiffness, or sometimes redness surrounding the joint. People sometimes experience difficulty moving the arthritic joint or clicking or popping sounds when attempting certain movements. Common joints impacted are the hips, fingers, feet, and knees.  

What is deer antler velvet?

Deer Antler Velvet is a superfood that is extracted from the pre-calcified antler of a deer or elk. Deer antlers are fascinating in that they are one of the fastest growing tissues on the planet. This is largely in part to the deer velvet containing insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1). This hormone is found naturally within human bodies, but not all individuals will have levels within normal range. While it's always recommended that you consult with a licensed physician, supplementing with deer antler velvet may potentially help with this.

Deer antler velvet also contains many key compounds vital to overall health, such as Chondroitin sulfate, Phosphorus, Magnesium, and Polysaccharides. It also contains Glucosamine Sulfate, which is another one of the key ingredients that may help support joint health.*

IGF-1, Chondroitin Sulfate, and Glucosamine

As mentioned above, deer velvet supplements come with numerous compounds that provide many different health benefits. There are two ingredients that may play a key role in helping with arthritis and inflamed joints. 

IGF-1 for Arthritis

IGF-1 is similar to insulin and works with growth hormones to speed up the regeneration of cells. There are multiple reports that reference there is likely a strong connection between IGF-1 levels and arthritis. This leads many to believe that taking deer antler velvet may help support joint health. 

Below are several studies supporting that IGF-1 supplementation could help with arthritis and joint pain. We read through the research, which can be a headache to read, and pulled out the relevant info to summarize the findings. 

  1. Science Mag reported on a study conducted by the Journal of Immunology that claims IGF-1 "could be an attractive therapeutic target for both rheumatoid arthritis and graves disease."
  2. NBCI conducted a lengthy study showing a connection with arthritis and low levels of IGF-1 within the body. The research shows IGF-1 has "mainly pro-inflammatory effects" and "IGF-1 levels are typically decreased in chronic inflammation."

Chondroitin Sulfate & Glucosamine Sulfate for Joint Pain

Aside from IGF-1, Deer Antler Velvet also contains both Chondroitin Sulfate and Glucosamine Sulfate. Both of these natural compounds are likely to help with arthritis and joint pain. Chondroitin and Glucosamine are both found within cartilage of the joints. Specifically, they are focused on retaining water within the joints which is important for cartilage functionality.

  1. A study from the International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences & Research found that "Glucosamine and Chondroitin sulphate are effective in the  treatment of Osteoarthritis because these are found to be better than placebo in reducing pain and more prominently effective in preventing further joint space narrowing already present in patients." They gathered these results by looking into numerous different tests conducted to measure the impact of Glucosamine and Chondroitin on joint pain.
  2. Further in-depth research conducted by concludes that there is significant evidence that Chondroitin and Glucosamine sulfate help reduce joint pain. Given that pure deer antler velvet naturally includes both of these compounds, it is likely that deer sprays assist in alleviating chronic joint pain.  


1 comment

  • I actually came across this article while looking for the NBCI study on deer antler velvet, so it’s interesting that you guys referenced the same study I was looking for. I had read it in the past but then couldn’t find the page again. To me, that’s rather interesting that the low levels of IGF-1 may be contributing to the pain from arthritis. My father has arthritis and I’m always looking for ways to help him battle this troublesome disease. He’s found some help with taking acetaminophen, but I worry that he’s taking so much every day. That cannot be good for his liver. I’m going to order a bottle to give him next time I see him. I really hope this deer velvet spray works to cure his joint pain. Thanks for the informative article.

    Leslie Dubin

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