Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is a natural compound that contains sulfur. It's sometimes used as an alternative medicine for various health purposes and goes by different names like dimethyl sulfone, methyl sulfone, and others.
Before people started using it as a medicine, MSM was mostly used as a solvent in industry, especially at high temperatures. Its parent compound, dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO), was also used for similar purposes.
In the past, from the 1950s to the 1970s, scientists studied DMSO a lot because it had some interesting effects on living things. They found that it could get through cell membranes, had antioxidant properties (which means it could protect cells from damage), helped reduce inflammation, had effects on certain enzymes, and could cause the release of histamine from mast cells (which is related to allergic reactions).
In the late 1970s, two scientists, Dr. Robert Herschler and Dr. Stanley Jacob, started to investigate a substance called MSM. It doesn't have a strong smell and is similar to DMSO, a compound known for its potential medical uses. In 1981, Dr. Herschler got a patent in the United States for using MSM to make skin smoother, strengthen nails, and thin the blood. Later, he got more patents claiming that MSM could reduce stress, ease pain, fight parasites, boost energy, help with metabolism, improve blood circulation, and speed up wound healing. But it's important to note that there isn't much solid scientific proof for these claims.
However, there is some scientific research suggesting that MSM might be helpful for conditions like arthritis and other inflammatory problems. These include issues like interstitial cystitis (a bladder problem), allergic rhinitis (hay fever), and inflammation caused by exercise.
Methylsulfonylmethane Uses (MSM)