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Methylsulfonylmethane (Dimethylsulfone or, more commonly, MSM) is a small DMSO-related sulfur-containing molecule used for its antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties. It holds potential for joint health (not significantly different than glucosamine sulfate).

Our evidence-based analysis on methylsulfonylmethane features 75 unique references to scientific papers.

Research analysis led by .
Reviewed by
Examine.com Team
Last Updated:

How to Take

Medical Disclaimer

Recommended dosage, active amounts, other details

Supplementation of MSM tends to be taken at up to 3,000mg daily, which seems to be effective for reducing symptoms of osteoarthritis and conferring some antioxidant protection to the body. It is unsure if higher supplemental doses are better than 3,000mg, so sticking to that dose may be prudent.

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Human Effect Matrix

Unlocked for Examine Plus members

The Human Effect Matrix summarizes human studies to tell you what effects Methylsulfonylmethane has on your body, how much evidence there is, and how strong these effects are.

Full details are available to Examine Plus members.
Grade Level of Evidence
Robust research conducted with repeated double-blind clinical trials
Multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled
Single double-blind study or multiple cohort studies
Uncontrolled or observational studies only
Level of Evidence
? The amount of high quality evidence. The more evidence, the more we can trust the results.
Outcome Magnitude of effect
? The direction and size of the supplement's impact on each outcome. Some supplements can have an increasing effect, others have a decreasing effect, and others have no effect.
Consistency of research results
? Scientific research does not always agree. HIGH or VERY HIGH means that most of the scientific research agrees.
grade-c Notable - See study
A decrease in exercise induced oxidation is noted with MSM supplementation and thought to be the underlying reason for reductions in muscle damage and soreness. The degree of reduction seems to be notable, as the increase in MDA and protein carbonylation were fully abolished
grade-c Minor - See study
One study that used MSM as a placebo noted that there was an increase in edema relative to baseline; not known why.
grade-c Minor Very High See 2 studies
A reduction in oxidative biomarkers has been noted following MSM ingestion
grade-c Minor - See study
A decrease in exercise-induced lipid peroxidation is noted as assessed by serum MDA
grade-c Minor - See study
Biomarkers of muscle damage such as creatinine and bilirubin are decreased following exercise with an MSM preload
grade-c Minor - See study
A decrease in muscle soreness has been noted with MSM preloads before exercise
grade-c Minor - See study
A decrease in protein carbonylation is noted with MSM supplementation
grade-c Minor - See study
A decrease in symptoms of osteoarthritis has been noted and seems to be somewhat comparable in potency to glucosamine sulfate
grade-c - - See study
No significant influence on exercise related fatigue
grade-c - - See study
No significant influence on pain symptoms in osteoarthritis
grade-c - - See study
No significant influence on the total training volume able to be conducted
grade-d Minor - See study
A decrease in pollen-induced allergies has been noted with MSM supplementation, with efficacy within one week
grade-d Minor - See study
Decreases upper respiratory symptoms have been noted with MSM supplementation, although not to a remarkable degree.

Studies Excluded from Consideration

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Things to Note

Other Functions:

Also Known As

MSM, dimethyl sulfone, dimethylsulfone

Do Not Confuse With

DMSO (reduced form of MSM)

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Click here to see all 75 references.