MSM is a compound found in many foods and available as a dietary supplement. It is often claimed to be beneficial for conditions such as allergies, yeast infections, osteoporosis, and arthritis. MSM provides the body with sulfur (used for making certain amino acids), but most people get enough sulfur from eating protein. There is little evidence suggesting that the supplement really works for most conditions.
MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) is a compound found in many foods such as grains, fruits, vegetables, and milk. It is also available as a dietary supplement. The supplement is claimed to be useful for treating and/or preventing many different conditions, including (but not limited to):
- Various kinds of yeast infections (see Can MSM Cure Candida?)
- Stretch marks
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- High cholesterol.
(Click Benefits of MSM for more information on the potential benefits of the supplement.)
The MSM molecule contains sulfur and is a source for sulfur that the body needs to make certain amino acids. However, most people get plenty of sulfur through eating protein. Researchers think that the supplement might decrease inflammation and may reduce homocysteine levels. High homocysteine levels may increase the risk of heart disease, strokes, and hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis).
Very early evidence suggests that a combination of MSM with glucosamine might help with arthritis, but there is little evidence suggesting that the supplement really works for most other uses (see Does MSM Work? for more information).