Just yesterday a reader of the website sent to me over the email link a very interesting video and a story from The Daily UK. On the video a fully grown man who is very bulked up from weight lifting talked about him increased his height in his usual sneakers from a little over 6′ 3″ to 6′ 4.25″, which he says would be a 1.25″ increase of height over a time span of 2.5 months. The Youtube video is from link HERE. The Account name is “ugoarimo” which the speaker shorten to just “ugo” from the beginning of the video. It seems that he had symptoms of knee pain resurface from high school days so he decided to take start taking the glucosamine sulfate and chondroitin.
Now, from a completely scientific point of view, I have seen at least 2-3 PubMed studies where patients with degrading thickness of articular cartilage in their knees resulting in knee pain had a reduction in knee pain after taking the glucosamine supplement for about 2-3 months. That could indicate that maybe, just maybe the glucosamine can actually no just halt the decrease in thickness of the articular cartilage, but also increase the thickness. However , that should still not explain why this man on the video claimed that his height increase by 1.25″ which is far beyond what I have thought glucosamine supplement could do.
So a little more about this guy who calls himself “ugo”. His other name that he goes by is The Black Spiderman. He seems to be some type of nutrition and fitness celebrity because on his Facebook page he has over 22600 likes. On his Twitter account he has over 17500 followers. He describes himself as a Physique Competitor/Model and BJJ Black Belt so he definitely tries to stay in shape. The video was published in July 2012 and he has almost 240 videos on his youtube account as of this time. On the other videos, he is not promoting any type of health supplement or multivitamin so if I was to say he was just another internet marketer trying to sell a product which is ineffective, I would have to second guess myself because I might be wrong.
The Science and Actual Study: From the article below…”The supplement is an amino acid made from combining sugar and glutamine. It is combined with sulphur to form glucosamine sulphate.” It seems that the key is to take the glucosamine sulphate. It is thought glucosamine improves water retention in the discs, which is likely to reduce wear and tear on the vertebrae. In the study, 36 people were asked to take the supplement for 4 weeks. Half of them took 1500mg of glucosamine sulphate daily. There was a control group given a placebo. The results seem to show that the group taking the Glucosamine Sulfate supplement at 1500 mg daily for about 1 month saw an increase in height of about 2-4 millimeters, which to me is very difficult to determine whether it could be from measurement error or real height increase. What is quite conclusive about the benefits of this supplement is it “halted the progression-of osteoarthritis in the knees of patients taking it daily for a few years“. If I was a betting man, I’d say that the height increase can be that the height decrease throughout the day was decreased and that some lost height was restored but the body in general never increased in height. However, I might be wrong. In the comments “Ugo” states that he started to experience bilateral knee pains just like in high school when he was still growing. [Note: They are referring to glucosamine sulfate, NOT glucosamine chondroitin.]
Additional Notes: Under the video where the comments are we see that a few people responded to him and said ….”Dude, i grew an inch. I accidentally bought the sulfate kind but i guess it still works. I’ve been taking like 3 2000mg pills a day (1 in the morning, 2 before bed) with meals for about 2 weeks. Basically ever since i saw your vid. I know it’s probably the cartilage in my spine regenerating, but idgaf. So thanks bro! I’m gonna keep taking this until i see no more changes“. So apparently another guy increased his height by 1 inch from taking the glucosamine sulfate at 2000 mg 3 times a day for only 2 weeks! Most of the other commenters called this guy a liar and said he didn’t grow but he seems to have a rather stoic and poker faced attitude to the accusations so judging him only by his actions and reactions to other people calling him a fraud, I’d say that I’m on the side that believes in what he claims, at least right now.
The thing is The Black Spiderman (as he calls himself) cites a link http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-142809/Can-pill-make-taller-weeks.html which made me even more curious. Here is the entire article below…
Can a pill make you taller in four weeks?
by JENNY HOPE, Daily Mail
Can a pill really make you taller?
Glucosamine – a popular dietary supplement that seems to prevent the wear and tear of ageing joints – may also help people to grow taller.
New research suggests glucosamine sulphate, a naturally occurring building block for cartilage, can prevent shrinkage of the spine.
Top athletes have used glucosamine for years – and latest research shows the overthecounter supplement appears to protect cartilage tissue in the spine to the extent that it leads to an increase in height.
Glucosamine sulphate is believed to recondition cartilage tissue, rather than just counter the pain caused when joints naturally suffer osteoarthritis with increasing age.
Dr Peter McCarthy, from the Welsh Institute of Chiropractic at Glamorgan University, who carried out the study, said people taking glucosamine for four weeks grew taller.
It is thought glucosamine improves water retention in the discs, which is likely to reduce wear and tear on the vertebrae. As we age, we lose the ability to manufacture sufficient levels of glucosamine.
Dr McCarthy said: ‘It’s the first time research has shown that glucosamine, a nutritional supplement, can lead to an increase in height. We believe it has a direct effect on spinal joint tissues by preventing water loss from the cartilage in the discs.’
Glucosamine helps form new connective molecules that make vital links between cells and tissue, especially in cartilage.
The supplement is an amino acid made from combining sugar and glutamine. It is combined with sulphur to form glucosamine sulphate.
The new study involved 36 volunteers, half of whom took 1500mg of glucosamine sulphate daily. The remainder took a placebo pill manufactured to look the same.
After four weeks, two independent examiners found a slight increase in height among those taking the supplement.
There was no significant difference among those taking the placebo pill, says a report in the European Journal of Chiropractic 2002.
Dr McCarthy said: ‘The increase was not huge – it was between two and four millimetres – but this is a significant finding-Osteoarthritis affects an enormous number of people.
‘Glucosamine could be helping to reverse the pressures caused by standing upright. It could also be regulating the production of cartilage components. Supplemenation may either increase the total body height of the average person or reduce the amount of normal spinal shrinkage during the day.’
Thousands of people regularly use the supplement, which was introduced to Britain by David Wilkie, the former Olympic gold medal swimmer and managing director of Health Perception, which manufactures an oral supplement and a gel formula which can be rubbed into a painful joint.
Wilkie discovered glucosamine while training in the U.S. and has used it for more than 20 years.
Glucosamine is the preferred treatment for arthritis in Spain, Portugal and Italy.
Research in The Lancet medical journal last year found that the supplement halted the progression-of osteoarthritis in the knees of patients taking it daily for three years.
England rugby star Lawrence Dallaglio has taken glucosamine for years and believes it contributed to his comeback after injury. He said: ‘It works for me, but it’s good to see research which actually proves it’s having a beneficial effect.’