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What is methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)?

Methylsulfonylmethane, otherwise known as MSM, is composed of four elements including sulfur, oxygen, carbon, and hydrogen. Though MSM is naturally found in the body, you can also obtain it from consuming food, beverages, and supplements.


MSM for skin tightening


What gives the skin its structure is a special protein called collagen. This protein is the most bountiful one of the body. Aging is a natural process of the life cycle; however, our bodies start to make less and less collagen with us getting older.

Thus, our skin loses its firmness and we develop wrinkles, fine lines, and dark circles. Certain lifestyle habits and environmental factors such as sunlight exposure and air pollution are known to contribute to the loss of collagen as well. Researchers believe that MSM helps boost collagen production.


MSM benefits for hair growth


MSM can also stimulate keratin production which is beneficial for hair growth. Keratin is the protein that gives the hair its strength and fullness.


MSM and inflammation


MSM contains sulfur which is demonstrated to have anti-inflammatory properties. For this reason, MSM can be useful for easing inflammation involved in conditions such as osteoarthritis and tendinitis.

In a 2008 study, MSM, combined with silymarin, was found to improve symptoms of an inflammatory skin condition called rosacea.


Daily dosage


It is typical for people to take at least 3 grams of MSM per day. However, people may take up to 20 grams in cases of a medical condition.

In a 2005 study, 6 grams of MSM per day (divided into two dosages) was found to improve symptoms in participants suffering from osteoarthritis.

Side effects can occur depending on the person, but they are not associated with a specified intake. It is reported that some may experience effects like diarrhea, insomnia, headache, nausea, bloating and abdominal discomfort.


MSM-rich foods


As mentioned, you get receive MSM from eating food. Some plant species such as cleafy green vegetables are major sources of MSM. It is highly advised to eat these vegetables raw as cooking them is known to reduce nutritional value.
Additional plant species with a high MSM content include:

  • corn
  • whole grains
  • onions
  • alfalfa sprouts
  • apples
  • tomatoes

Coffee, milk, and tea are some beverages that happen to be high in MSM. In addition, MSM can be found in meats like fish and poultry.

MSM: In Summary


Research shows that MSM is a beneficial element of the body. There are no recommendations in terms of how much you should take. The studies done on MSM suggest that it has a low toxicity and does not possess a lot of negative effects on the health.

On the other hand, there is not enough information concerning how the compound actually works to benefit skin and hair health.


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