Healing Properties for Degenerated Disc and Cartilage

Discat Plus and Discat Plus ENHANCED offer a nutritional approach to caring for degenerated and herniated discs.  

In order to repair or regenerate the degenerated disc, nutrient and biomechanical factors need to be addressed. (42) Degeneration may start as early as adolescence. The earlier degeneration sets in, the more it affects the mechanical function of the disc. Just moderate decreases in the disc’s nucleus glycosaminoglycan content may do this. (40) Further, aging sees a shift in the chondroitin sulfate content of the disc (50) as well as in glycosaminoglycan formation (41) leading to degeneration.

Chondroitin sulfate (CS) and glucosamine sulfate (GS) [components of glycosaminoglycan (GAG)] are naturally occurring substances that are essential for cartilage maintenance as well as necessary for cartilage regeneration. Together, they help chondrocytes within cartilage form new cartilage. The amount of proteoglycans formed depends upon the amount of glucosamine present. The more glucosamine available, the more proteoglycans can be made. (11) 

The matrix of the intervertebral disc is mainly glycosaminoglycan (GAG) which attracts and holds large quantities of water. GAG contains chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine sulfate. These sulfates are chondroprotective agents that inhibit enzyme breakdown of cartilage and hamper the production of inflammatory agents. Chondroitin sulfate reaches synovial fluid and joint cartilage when taken orally between 2 and 5 hours later. Orally taken glucosamine sulfate boosts GAG synthesis in degenerated cells as about 90% of it is absorbed and merged into articular cartilage. So taking GS and CS together is more effective than taken alone which further allows larger reductions in NSAID use for osteoarthritis patients. (50)

One of the most popular and effective substances used by doctors in Europe for arthritis is chondroitin sulfate A (CSA). CSA is naturally found in bones, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, vertebral discs as well as in many plants. (17) In one study, 77% of those taking CSA reported reduced inflammation whereas those receiving NSAIDs only reported 42% reduced inflammation. (17) Chondroitin sulfate repairs degraded bones, increases the absorption and replacement of calcium and diminishes the disease, and begins rebuilding the damaged area with none of the health risks of NSAIDs. (17)

To get the most benefit of chondroitin sulfate, you need the most beneficial source which is perna canaliculus. From the green lipped mussel (pictured to the right: a shellfish so those allergic to shellfish should be cautious),  pure chondroitin sulfate offers anti-inflammatory properties due to its unique omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid extracts. These are found to inhibit leukotriene and cyclooxygenase (COX) activity, both of which are involved in the inflammatory process. (48) It is reportedly the “single most effective” item for relief of joint pain and inflammation as occurs with disc herniations, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. (17):


  • may decrease (or eliminate) pain of rheumatoid and osteoarthritis
  • may help restore mobility to degenerated joints/cartilage
  • may decrease joint distortion from degeneration of joint tissue


Long term use of chondroitin sulfate combines structure modifying and symptom modifying effects on osteoarthritis progression prevention and suggests it could be a disease-modifying agent in patients with knee arthritis. (49)

Adding Cox® Technic flexion distraction to the nutritional approach to disc degeneration offers positive care for back pain. 

Click here to see references.