are the medical benefits of taking shark cartilage?
This supplement is a very popular in the United
States. Its popularity came when research studies showed that it has
some potential anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory benefits.
It was suggested that sharks don't get cancer and thus, taking shark
cartilage would help prevent cancer. Unfortunately, afterwards,
researchers found sharks with cancer of the kidney, lymph
glands and cartilage. There goes that theory!
Manufacturers promote it as a "miracle" cure for cancer. It
is also suggested for treating pain and various forms of arthritis
and rheumatoid arthritis.
What are the scientific
evidence of using
shark cartilage to treat cancer or to cure it altogether?
The research studies done were not of very high quality.
Many of these studies were funded by manufacturers and this brings up
issues of influence and bias. In lab settings, this supplement seems to
new vessel growth (called angiogenesis), exactly what cancer cells need
in order to grow. Because of these studies, it was suggested that
taking it could prevent cancer.
Tom's recommendations: Studies in humans are lacking
unfortunately. This supplement contains mostly chondroitin
which can be
useful in arthritis
conditions. It also contains calcium. There isn't
ANY studies in humans to show whether it would work to cure cancer.
Don't write it off yet! There is still hope for using this
for cancer therapy; we aren't sure exactly how effective it is in
humans. Luckily it is safe and has been used in studies lasting up to
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