Where Does Glucosamine for Dogs Come From?
Glucosamine is a naturally occurring amino sugar, and is used to construct bones and cartilage. Because of this, it is found in animals and fish. Glucosamine is used in some cellular structures that help cells maintain their shape. Plants and fungi can also contain glucosamine.
One of the most concentrated sources of glucosamine is in the shells of shellfish. Most glucosamine comes from chitin, a component of shellfish. The shellfish (often shrimp shells) are ground up and put in an acidic solution. The glucosamine is then isolated, concentrated, and cleaned. The glucosamine is then bound with a salt for stability and is shipped as a powder.
Glucosamine can also be derived from grains such as corn. A fermentation process with corn allows the extraction of the glucosamine.
Because most glucosamine is manufactured from shellfish, individuals with a shellfish allergy should use caution. The production process that separates and refines glucosamine is designed to remove all other components, including the proteins that trigger the shellfish allergic reaction. Despite this, glucosamine is manufactured in facilities with shellfish. Any cross contamination between the raw materials and the finished product, however unlikely, would pose a risk to a person with a shellfish allergy.
How is Glucosamine Produced, Live Strong (accessed 8/2011)
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