Green Lipped mussel (also known as New Zealand shell clam/green-lipped mussel) is endemic to New Zealand/New Zealand’s coastal waters and has been part of the Maori staple food for centuries.
The discovery of its health benefits stems from the fact that coastal Maori communities that consume GLM mussels have a lower incidence of arthritis than inland, so numerous studies have been conducted.
In empirical medicine, what are the benefits of green-lipped mussels? Are there any side effects of green-lipped mussels? See text analysis for details
What is a green-lipped mussel?
Green Lipped mussel (scientific name Perna canaliculus) is a member of the mollusk phylum Bivalve mussels.
Perna canaliculus is distinguished from other mussel species by bright green stripes around the posterior ventral margin and on the inside of the shell lip.
Its lipids contain a high proportion of omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, mainly docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and several trace lipid components, including non-methylene intermittent fatty acids, plasmalogens, phytosterols, and furan fatty acids.
Most of these compounds may be biosynthesized in seaweed and then accumulated in shellfish that feed on them.
What are the proven benefits of green-lipped mussels?
1. Good for osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis, a chronic joint disease characterized by erosion of joint cartilage, resulting in progressive pain and joint inmobility, affects 3.7% of the world’s population, equivalent to about 268 million people.
Its incidence increases with age and can be divided into four subtypes based on pathogenesis: post-traumatic, genetic predisposition, aging, and metabolism-related osteoarthritis.
A systematic review (9 randomised controlled trials, 452 people with osteoarthritis) noted that New Zealand GLM supplementation had a moderate and clinically meaningful therapeutic effect (measured by visual analogue score (VAS) pain score) for osteoarthritis pain, and that most studies also observed improvements in stiffness, physiological function, and quality of life. Note 1
*Conclusion: GLM supplementation may be positive for osteoarthritis, but limited by the number and quality of studies, further larger and high-quality studies are needed to confirm their effectiveness and optimal formulation
2. Beneficial for asthma
Asthma is a heterogeneous disorder, usually associated with chronic airway inflammation, and can be diagnosed based on the patient’s history of respiratory symptoms, such as wheezing, chest tightness, shortness of breath, and cough.
Patients usually have allergic diseases or associated family history such as eczema, food allergies, drug allergies, or allergic rhinitis.
Globally, the prevalence of asthma/asthma in adults is estimated at 4.3%, with an estimated 3 million adults living with asthma, a number that will increase to 400 million by 2025.
An 8-week randomized, placebo-controlled trial of 46 patients with allergic asthma showed that a patented lipid extract (Lyprinol) of New Zealand green-lipped mussels reduced daytime wheeze and exhaled H2O2 concentrations, and increased peak expiratory flow, compared with placebo. Note 2
*Conclusion: For allergic asthma, the lipid extract of GLM may bring positive help, but due to the small sample size, more studies are needed to further validate
3. Beneficial for rheumatoid arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disease characterized by inflammation, mainly manifested as small joints of the hands and feet.
Symptoms are symmetrical persistent synovitis of the hands, wrists, feet, and knees, resulting in joint tenderness, swelling, pain, limited mobility, and morning stiffness.
One study (12-week study of 50 rheumatoid arthritis patients) showed that fish oil mixed with GLM reduced the severity of joint pain, swelling, and morning stiffness. Note 3
Another randomized placebo-controlled study (6 months, 35 patients with rheumatoid arthritis) found no significant improvement in measures of disease activity in GLM extract. Note 4
*Conclusion: For rheumatoid arthritis, the benefit of using GLM extract alone is unclear and needs to be further verified
Are there any side effects of green-lipped mussels?
GLM supplements are probably safe for most people, but side effects or adverse reactions that have been reported include: itching, gas, gout, abdominal pain, burning, diarrhea, nausea, skin rash, edema
Safety precautions (6 contraindications for use)
1. Do not use if pregnant or lactating women (due to unknown safety)
2. Do not use for poor liver and kidney function (due to unknown related safety)
3. Since GLM is a type of shellfish, if you are allergic or intolerant to shellfish, avoid these supplements, possible allergic reactions include: rash, swelling of the face or hands, swelling or tingling of the throat or mouth, chest tightness, difficulty breathing etc.
4. Do not use with anti-inflammatory drugs, which may affect the efficacy of the drug
5. There have been rare cases of acute abdominal pain, elevated transaminases, and heart failure caused by the use of Lyprinol lipid extract, but the causal relationship is currently unclear. Notes 5 and 6
6. May have anticoagulant effect, so patients with coagulation disorders, 3 weeks before surgery, taking relevant anticoagulant or antiplatelet drugs please refrain from use, which will increase the risk of bruising or bleeding