Green-lipped mussel, also known as perna canalicula, is a shellfish that is found primarily in the freshwaters of New Zealand and is economically important to that region. This particular shellfish is unique from other mussel species in that it has a dark brown shell with green ?lips' around the edges and only one adductor muscle. Additionally, it is one of the largest mussels and can grow up to 240 mm in length. Green-lipped mussel is available in the form of extract supplements (freeze-dried, ground, or capsule form) and oil.
How does it benefit the body?
Green-lipped mussel extract has been discovered as source of natural antioxidants and daily vitaminsin recent years. The oils extracted from the green-lipped mussel work as natural antioxidants in the body and are effective in anti-inflammatory treatments. These oils are an extremely rich source of Omega 3 oils and serve as a powerful health supplement for treating inflammatory illness and joint pain.
On its own, green-lipped mussel supplements are an excellent daily multivitamin. It is known to help treat and prevent cases of osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, joint pain caused by cancer treatment, asthma, and daytime wheezing.
Green-lipped mussel supplements provide your body with omega 3 fatty acids, protein, and carbohydrates and are a combination of all the basic nutrients your body needs to stay healthy and vigorous on a daily basis. It has anti-inflammatory properties and can be used to help decrease inflammation in the following cases:
- Arthritis (osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis): Studies conducted in New Zealand showed that green-lipped mussel extract is helpful in reducing joint pain and stiffness that is associated with arthritis.
- Asthma: Green-lipped mussel extract helps to decrease daytime wheezing and improves breathing in some asthma cases.
- Improved skin, hair, and nail health
- Reduced risk of premature skin ageing
- Reduced risk of heart disease and circulatory problems
- Strengthened bone structure and teeth
- Improved nerve cell function
How much green-lipped mussel extract do I need?
The right dose of green-lipped mussel supplements depends largely on factors like age, health, and current medical conditions. At the time there is not enough scientific information on mussel extract to determine an appropriate range of doses. When buying supplements always read the packaging for product labels and dosage information, and consult your healthcare specialist or pharmacist for advice if you are unsure about the dosage, given a current medical condition. Keep in mind that while natural products are safe, dosage is important.
Are there any side effects of medicine interactions?
Because green-lipped mussel as a health supplement is a fairly new phenomenon, research on negative side effects is still ongoing and there is not enough known about the negative side effects and medicine interactions. However, there have been some cases where green-lipped mussel has caused side effects like:
- intestinal gas
- liver problems (in rare cases)
Special precautions before taking green-lipped mussel supplements:
Pregnant or breastfeeding: Green-lipped mussel is potentially unsafe when used during pregnancy. Certain studies suggest that it may slow the development of the foetus and delay birth. It's best to avoid green-lipped mussel extract if you are pregnant. Not enough is known, either, about the safety of using green-lipped mussel extract during breastfeeding, and most healthcare experts advise it be avoided during this time.