Collagen; What is it? What are the benefits?
Benefits of Collagen
Collagen is a type of protein that helps to develop and protect a variety of tissues, including bones, cartilage, skin, hair, eyes, and the digestive system.
Collagen is the body's most abundant protein. It is the most important component of connective tissues, which include tendons, ligaments, skin, and muscles. It serves a variety of roles, including adding structure to your skin and reinforcing your bones.
Collagen supplements have become increasingly common in recent years. Most collagen is hydrolyzed, which means it has been broken down to make it easier to absorb.
Pork skin and bone broth are two other foods that can help you get more collagen in your diet. It can have a number of health benefits, ranging from joint pain relief to improved skin health.
As you grow older, the collagen in your body breaks down, making it more difficult for your body to create more. Powder supplements are the most common, but capsules and liquid supplements are also available.
Collagen Production in the Body
Collagen is also made in the body naturally by mixing amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. Your body needs the following to generate collagen:
- Proline is present in egg whites, dairy products, cabbage, mushrooms, and asparagus, among other things.
- Glycine is an amino acid found in pork, chicken, and gelatin, as well as a number of other protein-rich foods.
- Citrus fruits and bell peppers are high in vitamin C.
- Zinc can be present in a variety of foods, including beef, lamb, pork, shellfish, chickpeas, lentils, beans, milk, cheese, and a variety of nuts and seeds.
- Organ meats, cocoa powder, cashews, sesame seeds, and lentils are all high in copper.
Benefits of Collagen
Following are the benefits of collagen.
- Stronger Bones
Your bones become less dense and fragile when you get older, making them more prone to cracking and taking longer to recover. Regular collagen supplements have been shown in studies to help make your bones denser. This slows the aging process that causes them to become brittle. It also assists the body in producing new bone.
- Helps Relieve Joint Pain
Collagen helps to keep the cartilage in good shape.
When you grow older, the amount of collagen in the body decreases, increasing your risk of developing degenerative joint conditions like osteoarthritis.
Collagen supplements have been shown in some studies to help with osteoarthritis symptoms and overall joint pain reduction.
- Collagen Is an Easy-to-Digest Source of Protein
After a meal, the body works hard to absorb protein from sources like chicken or beef. Certain people may experience digestive symptoms such as burping or stomach pain. Collagen supplements, on the other hand, are hydrolyzed. This means the collagen has been broken down, making it easier for the body to absorb. Collagen supplements may be a more convenient way to get protein into your system.
Collagen peptides can also dissolve in water after being hydrolyzed. This makes them relatively easy to use in daily foods (like water or smoothies).
- Collagen Helps Smooth Wrinkles and Boost Elasticity in Skin
The well-researched advantage of collagen supplementation is improved skin health. Researchers looked at 11 randomized, placebo-controlled trials involving over 800 patients who were given up to 10 grams (g) of collagen per day with the aim of improving their skin. The supplements were found to improve skin elasticity, improve moisture retention, and increase the density of collagen fibers in the skin.
- Promotes Heart Health
Collagen can help reduce the risk of heart-related conditions. Collagen gives structure to your arteries. They are the blood vessels that bring blood from your heart to the rest of the body. Arteries may become weak and fragile if there is less collagen in the body.
This could result in atherosclerosis, a condition characterized by artery narrowing. Atherosclerosis doubles the risk of heart attack and stroke.
Thirty-one healthy adults were given 16 grams of collagen daily for six months in one trial. They had a substantial decrease in artery stiffness by the end of the study.
- Oral Supplements May Promote Gut Health
It heals the gut in inflammatory digestive disorders like irritable bowel disease (IBD). Collagen levels are found to be lower in patients with these conditions, according to some studies. You can help cure a deficiency by taking collagen.
IBD patients have lower serum levels of type 4 collagen, according to some studies. Collagen is a component of connective tissue that makes up your colon and GI tract, so increasing its levels can provide a healing environment for your body.
Other health benefits
Other health benefits of collagen have been thoroughly investigated.
• Nails and hair: Collagen supplementation can help to strengthen your nails by preventing brittleness. It can also encourage the growth of longer hair and nails.
• Gut health is important: Despite the lack of conclusive evidence, some health practitioners advocate for the use of collagen supplements to treat intestinal permeability. It is also known as a leaky gut syndrome.
• Mental well-being: Collagen supplements have not been studied in relation to brain health. However, some people say that they boost their mood and reduce anxiety symptoms.
• Loss of weight: Some people claim that taking collagen supplements will help them lose weight and speed up their metabolism. There hasn't been any research to back up these arguments.
Collagen supplementation has a host of health benefits and with no adverse effects reported. It can help to improve the health of your skin by reducing wrinkles and dryness. It can also aid in the development of muscle mass, support fat loss, the prevention of bone loss, relief of joint pain and in some aspects increase performance.
What collagen supplements are out there?
There are many collagen supplements out there. Personally I use dose and co collagen creamers. I throw 10g into my smoothies or in my hot drinks. I love the salted caramel flavor paired with a herbal tea or hot chocolate. Hot drinks are the best during the winter season.
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