There is a lot of misconception surrounding where MSM comes from. If you've been looking to purchase MSM, it's very likely that you've come across some conflicting claims about MSM. These claims are usually perpetrated by untrained resellers. Many of you may have the following questions:
- Where does MSM come from?
- Is MSM extracted from plants?
- Is MSM natural or synthetic?
I will do my best to answer all of these questions and hopefully to clear up some confusion in this article. So without further ado, lets get started!
MSM (methlsulfonylmethane) is an organic, bio-active form of sulfur. It's also naturally occurring in plants, animals, and in humans. The highest concentration of MSM in nature is in mammal’s milk, but these food sources contain MSM only in parts per million. This means there is actually very little MSM in most foods or plant cell matter. So you cannot extract, isolate or grow the compound from nature.
In nature, the life cycle of DMSO and MSM begins in the oceans where the action of sun light on Phyto-plankton creates dimethylsulfonium salts. They are then transformed into the gas Dimethysulfide, which is then transferred into the atmosphere, and into rain that passes it on to plants and animals.
Although MSM is found in nature, the challenge with extracting MSM from plants is that you would need to destroy thousands of trees just to produce a very small amount of usable MSM, as its found in Parts per million quantities in organic matter. Therefore it's simply not sustainable or economically viable.
Since you can’t just squeeze MSM from plants or other natural materials. The most “natural” MSM is to mimic the formation, function, and structure of the MSM found in nature. The way commercial MSM is produced is by synthesizing dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and hydrogen peroxide.
This creates a chemical reaction that forms a new molecule called Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM). If MSM is produced correctly under very stringent conditions, the result is pure MSM, which is 100% identical to the MSM found in nature.
MSM is not a drug but an organic form of sulfur and a potent antioxidant made up of