Study finds good results for knee pain using formula combining three joint health ingredients

A formula using three ingredients that all have separate research backing has shown it can provide some relief for knee pain sufferers.

Hank Schultz, Senior Editor

October 13, 2023

3 Min Read
Supplement formula helps knee pain

A recent study has found that krill oil combined with astaxanthin and a form of hyaluronic acid has a clinically significant effect on joint pain associated with osteoarthritis. 

The new research was published in the journal Nutrients. It was the work of researchers associated with hospitals and universities in South Korea as well as an employee of Valensa International, which funded the study. 

The study material was a proprietary Valensa formulation, branded as FlexPro MD. The formula includes 321 milligrams (mg) of Supera Krill Oil manufactured by Norwegian firm Aker BioMarine as well as 2 mg of Valensa’s own natural astaxanthin and 30 mg of a form of hyaluronic acid offered as a sodium salt. 

All three ingredients have shown good results in other studies 

All three ingredients have research showing their anti-inflammatory effects in models of osteoarthritis, which is a common joint condition associated with aging, mechanical wear and systemic inflammation. 

For example, a study done in Australia that was published last year used a high dose (4 grams) of krill oil to achieve a modest reduction in knee pain for subjects diagnosed with osteoarthritis. 

A study published earlier this year using astaxanthin (combined with palmitoylethanolamide) found a reduction in knee pain and stiffness in osteoarthritis sufferers. 

And several years ago, Japanese researchers reviewed the evidence for the use of hyaluronic acid supplements for knee pain and concluded the data shows it can provide modest relief (hyaluronic acid is also used as an injectable medication for degenerative knee conditions). 

In the Valensa study, a cohort of 100 individuals with mild osteoarthritic knee pain were recruited for the 12-week, placebo-controlled study that was conducted at two clinical sites in South Korea. Of those, 38 in the intervention group and 37 in the placebo group completed the study. 

There were slightly more women than men in the study, whose population of subjects averaged about 58 years of age. 

The subjects were told to take one capsule daily and maintain their regular diets and activity levels. They were counseled against ingesting additional krill oil or hyaluronic acid. 

The participants completed joint comfort and pain questionnaires at baseline and again at 6 and 12 weeks. The researchers also drew blood and analyzed it for markers of inflammation and cartilage breakdown. 

Positive result backs earlier research 

The researchers found statistically significant reductions in the pain and comfort questionnaires. This matched earlier research in rats and in a different human study population using the same formula. 

In conclusion, the researchers said their study “demonstrated statistically significant improvements in K-VAS pain scores and K-WOMAC total and subscale scores for participants taking FP-MD compared with placebo after 12 weeks of supplementation, confirming that this functional food can effectively address joint pain, the main symptom of degenerative arthritis, and improve physical function.” 

Read more about:

Supplement science

About the Author(s)

Hank Schultz

Senior Editor, Informa

Hank Schultz has been the senior editor of Natural Products Insider since early 2023. He can be reached at [email protected]

Prior to joining the Informa team, he was an editor at NutraIngredients-USA, a William Reed Business Media publication.

His approach to industry journalism was formed via a long career in the daily newspaper field. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin with degrees in journalism and German, Hank was an editor at the Tempe Daily News in Arizona. He followed that with a long stint working at the Rocky Mountain News, a now defunct daily newspaper in Denver, where he rose to be one of the city editors. The newspaper won two Pulitzer Prizes during his time there.

The changing landscape of the newspaper industry led him to explore other career paths. He began his career in the natural products industry more than a decade ago at New Hope Natural Media, which was then part of Penton and now is an Informa brand. Hank formed friendships and partnerships within the industry that still inform his work to this day, which helps him to bring an insider’s perspective, tempered with an objective journalist’s sensibility, to his in-depth reporting.

Harkening back to his newspaper days, Hank considers the readers to be the primary stakeholders whose needs must be met. Report the news quickly, comprehensively and above all, fairly, and readership and sponsorships will follow.

In 2015, Hank was recognized by the American Herbal Products Association with a Special Award for Journalistic Excellence.

When he’s not reporting on the supplement industry, Hank enjoys many outside pursuits. Those include long distance bicycle touring, mountain climbing, sailing, kayaking and fishing. Less strenuous pastimes include travel, reading (novels and nonfiction), studying German, noodling on a harmonica, sketching and a daily dose of word puzzles in The New York Times.

Last but far from least, Hank is a lifelong fan and part owner of the Green Bay Packers.

Subscribe and receive the latest insights on the health and nutrition industry.
Join 37,000+ members. Yes, it's completely free.

You May Also Like