Collagen: All You Need to Know

If you haven’t heard of collagen by now, I’ll be blunt you are missing out!

Interest in collagen has been at a steady increase in the health & wellness world over the past year…and for good reason!

But, if this new trend has you wondering just what the heck this holy-grail supplement is & if you need it in your diet, don’t fret! You’re going to be a collagen expert when we’re done!?




The most abundant protein in the human body, collagen is often considered the “glue” that holds our bodies together1. And being made up of 8 essential amino acids, it’s a dang good one!

Collagen accounts for 1/3 of the total protein in our bodies and 70% of the protein in our skin.

These protein fibers make up the structure in connective tissues and can be found in our bones, tendons, ligaments, gut, hair and nails2.




Adequate collagen levels translate to healthier hair, skin, nails and bones!

The unfortunate truth is that as we age, the precious protein deteriorates.

By our mid-20s, collagen levels begin to decline. That’s why age comes with wrinkles, creases and joint pain3.

Collagen is made from the protein we eat and helps to rebuild damaged tissues and produce healthy cartilage (which pads bones removing painful friction in the joints)2,4.?

There are a number of other awesome benefits which you can see below!





 

Increases Skin Elasticity. In a study among women ages 40 to 60, supplementation with collagen for 8 weeks showed an improvement in skin elasticity, as well as a reduction of wrinkles and total amount of pores5.

Decreases Wrinkle Depth & Volume. Another study shows the effectiveness of an oral supplement containing collagen in relation to wrinkle depth and skin hydration6.

Reduces Cellulite & Stretch Marks. A study of women 24–50 years old with moderate cellulite demonstrated that a regular ingestion of collagen peptides over a period of 6 months led to a clear improvement of the skin’s appearance7.




Reduces Joint Pain, Stiffness and Inflammation. A study of treatment effects on osteoarthritis pain showed that patients treated with collagen displayed significant enhancement in daily activities suggesting an improvement in their quality of life8.

Improves Mobility & Flexibility. After 120 days of collagen supplementation, arthritis patients were found to have a statistically significant change in average knee extension and also to be able to exercise longer before experiencing any joint discomfort9.




Regulates Stomach Acid Secretion. Collagen contains two amino acids–glycine and proline. Glycine improves digestion by increasing gastric acid, which works to break down food!

Fights Leaky Gut Symptoms. Certain brands of collagen peptides contain glutamine which is another amino acid that prevents inflammation of the gut wall and helps heal leaky gut syndrome.


Sources
[1] SCHAUCH, M., & Brechka, N. (2016). 3 Ways to Benefit from Collagen. Better Nutrition, 78(3), 30-32.
[2] SMITH, M. D. (2017). Get a Collagen Boost. Better Nutrition, 79(9), 62-64.
[3] Tweed, V. (2012, April 1). Collagen: The Cure For Aging? Better Nutrition.
[4] Fricker, J. (1998). Cartilage transplantation: an end to creaky knees?. Lancet, 352(9135), 1202.
[5] Maia Campos PMBG,Melo MO, Calixto LS, Fossa MM (2015) An Oral Supplementation Based on Hydrolyzed Collagen and Vitamins Improves Skin Elasticity and Dermis Echogenicity: A Clinical Placebo-Controlled Study. Clin Pharmacol Biopharm 4:142. doi:10.4172/2167-065X.1000142
[6] Borumand M, Sibilla S. Effects of a nutritional supplement containing collagen peptides on skin elasticity, hydration and wrinkles. J Med Nutr Nutraceut 2015;4:47-53
[7] Schunck, M., Zague, V., Oesser, S., & Proksch, E. (2015). Dietary Supplementation with Specific Collagen Peptides Has a Body Mass Index-Dependent Beneficial Effect on Cellulite Morphology. Journal of Medicinal Food, 18(12), 1340–1348. http://doi.org/10.1089/jmf.2015.0022
[8] Crowley DC, Lau FC, Sharma P, Evans M, Guthrie N, Bagchi M, Bagchi D, Dey DK, Raychaudhuri SP. Safety and efficacy of undenatured type II collagen in the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee: a clinical trial. Int J Med Sci 2009; 6(6):312-321. doi:10.7150/ijms.6.312.
[9] “Undenatured Type II Collagen (UC-II®) for Joint Support: A Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled Study in Healthy Volunteers.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine,

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