Collagen is one of the latest buzzwords in the health community. It is difficult to avoid a health store or instagram feed without spotting creams, drinks and potions that promise a youthful appearance for decades to come. Collagen has many uses from food to medication to manufacturing. In fact, for thousands of years collagen was actually used to create glue. Today there is some debate over whether consuming rich foods and supplements actually increases the levels in your body. Let’s have a look at some of the need to know facts surrounding this new trendy supplement.
Collagen is the most abundant protein in our body accounting for about 1/ 3 of the protein composition. It is also one of the major building blocks of bones, skin, muscles, tendon and ligaments. It is found in many other body parts including blood vessels, corneas and teeth. As you age your body produces less collagen. One of the noticeable signs of this is your skin, which becomes less supple and firm.
It is a complex protein made up of many different types of amino acids, recognized mostly for its prolene, glycine, lysine, hydroxyproline and arginine content. This is important because these amino acids aren’t necessarily something that you would consume just from eating muscle meat.
We usually eat things such as chicken breasts, steak and ground meat which is not actually where a good quantity of these amino acids can be found. By simply eating animal based proteins, you are not getting all of the benefits of having a collagen rich diet. You would have to go to extremes such as making your own bone broth in order to extract the adequate nutrients from the bones of the animal.
Getting a supplement that is collagen rich, you are actually getting the version that is derived from the bones, cartilage and tendons of the animals. Generally most collagen in supplement form is from bovine, meaning cow, but can also be found in marine based sources.
Why would you consider using collagen?
As we age our natural production begins to slow and it slows down at a relatively early age, you will usually experience lower production around age 25. However, other factors can also influence whether or not we have a decreased amount.
Factors that decrease our natural production are things like having a hormonal imbalance, high levels of stress, digestive issues, poor diets high in sugar and processed foods, exposure to toxicity whether that is environmental or food based, nutritional deficiencies and of course ageing.
One of your first major benefits of using it will be joint and bone health. As we age our bodies tend to slow down which can cause us to experience more pain, inflammation and swelling of the joints as a result of a lack of collagen. Having collagen in our diet acts as a type of lubricant helping to keep everything smooth, coating tendons and bones which are rich in collagen.
Think of collagen as slippery glue that holds our body together and keeps us lubricated in order to move freely. Collagen will give your joints more lubrication and the ability to move more freely and easily without pain, pressure, compression and swelling.
Collagen is also known for its benefits in digestive health. Collagen will help repair the cell walls of the gastrointestinal tract as it is comprised of amino acids that acts as the building blocks to keep the gut healed and sealed, keeping the junctions nice and tight so that food and other toxins don’t leak out into the bloodstream and cause an immune response of inflammation.
By having collagen in the gut you are essentially tightening up these junctions and preventing anything from leaving the GI tract. You can think of it as your healer and your sealer of your digestive tract. Many studies on patients supplementing with it have found that it can help treat gastrointestinal symptoms and disorders like for example irritable bowel syndrome, acid reflux, crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
Collagen also carries the reputation as being one of the most beneficial beauty supplements. As mentioned earlier, most of the protein found in our skin is made up of collagen, which is why as we age you will start to see that the skin loses elasticity leading to the onset of wrinkles and loose skin throughout the entire body.
Collagen is the building block of having healthy skin, hair, nails and even teeth. Putting the elasticity back into the skin will help to ease fine lines and wrinkles and keep the skin looking young, supple and tight without requiring any cosmetic intervention. When skin loses its elasticity as a result of decreased its production, cellulite becomes more evident and it helps to reduce that dimpling on your skin by improving elasticity.
Several double blind experiments that investigated anti – aging properties of it have found that five grams of collagen intake daily by women for a period of 8 weeks actually significantly improves skin elasticity, moisture and dryness of the skin with little to no side effects.
Collagen protects your cardiovascular system and health and incredibly enough, low production and consumption is linked to arteriosclerosis which is a disease associated with the hardening of arteries. Prolene is a building block of collagen that helps your artery walls to release build up and move it into your bloodstream minimizing the accumulation in the arteries.
Another component of it called arginine also helps with nitric oxide production which allows for better vasodilation meaning the widening of your arteries and a relaxation of muscle cells and blood vessels. It’s is thus a great aid for circulatory health.
Collagen is also unique as it boosts your metabolism and muscle mass growth. Collagen supplementation can help increase your metabolism as it contains the amino acids glycine that plays the important role of helping form muscle tissue by converting glucose into energy. Retaining muscle mass is crucial as we age as it helps support posture, bone health and burns more calories and fat.
Collagen supports your nails, hair and teeth. It is the building blocks of your fingernails and teeth and by adding it into your diet regime it can help keep your nails strong and possibly even reverse signs of hair loss. A study published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology found that the essential relationship between extracellular matrix and hair follicle regeneration suggests that it could be a potential therapeutic agent for skin related diseases, hair loss and other.
Collagen can impact your liver health. The liver is one of the most important detoxifying organs in the body and taking it can help your liver detox and free itself from harmful substances by improving blood flow, keeping your heart young and healthy. This is due to glycine’s ability to minimize the risk of liver damage when it comes to interacting and absorbing unknown substances and toxins like alcohol. Taking it that includes glycine helps to reduce alcohol induced liver damage and other forms of acute chronic liver injury.
Lastly it has an impact on brain health and protects against Alzheimer’s. Studies have shown that the type 4 protects the brain against amyloid beta proteins which is a protein that is believed to be one of the causes of Alzheimer’s disease. This happens as the protein amyloid bunches together forming a plaque, which is commonly found in Alzheimer’s patients, and by increasing your uptake you can create a protective lining to your brain helping combat this protein from attacking neurons in Alzheimer’s disease.
The benefits derived from collagen depends on the type of collagen as each different type is better suited to a specific purpose. For example This makes finding a holistic collagen supplement in a market flooded with empty promises even more important. Prometheuz offers a collagen complex supplement that contains all 5 types of collagen formulas into one holistic supplement.
Consuming it in a hydrolysed pill form is the best processed form of collagen meaning the protein is broken down making it easier for your body to process. These complex pills help you to achieve the desired benefits and lifestyle changes mentioned above is the safest and most effective manor.