What is Collagen And Should I Be Taking It?

What is Collagen And Should I Be Taking It?

The Power of Collagen: A Comprehensive Guide

Collagen, a protein that plays a vital role in the health of our skin, joints, and more, is gaining increased attention in the world of nutrition and skincare. This article explores the benefits of collagen, its sources, and recent scientific evidence supporting its use.

What is Collagen?

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body, comprising about one-third of our total protein content. It's a major building block of bones, skin, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Collagen is also found in many other body parts, including blood vessels, corneas, and teeth.

The Benefits of Collagen

Collagen has numerous benefits, particularly in maintaining the health and vitality of our skin and joints.

1. Skin Health

Collagen plays a critical role in skin health. It helps maintain the skin's elasticity and hydration, which can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and dryness. A 2019 review of 11 studies with a total of 805 patients concluded that oral collagen supplements are promising for the short and long-term use for skin aging, and they also increase skin elasticity, hydration, and dermal collagen density.

2. Joint Health

Collagen also supports joint health by maintaining the integrity of your cartilage, which is the rubber-like tissue that protects your joints. In a systematic review of 15 randomized controlled trials, collagen peptide supplementation showed improvements in joint functionality and reduction of joint pain, especially when combined with exercise. Some evidence also suggested improvements in body composition, strength, and muscle recovery.

Sources of Collagen

While our bodies naturally produce collagen, this production decreases with age, leading to signs of aging such as wrinkles and joint discomfort. To supplement the body's natural collagen production, we can consume collagen through our diet and nutritional supplements.

1. Dietary Sources

Animal products such as bone broth, chicken skin, fish skin, and cuts of meat high in connective tissues are excellent dietary sources of collagen. Some other foods, though not rich in collagen themselves, support collagen production due to their high content of certain nutrients, like vitamin C, proline, glycine, and copper.

2. Collagen Supplements

Collagen supplements, often in the form of hydrolyzed collagen or collagen peptides, are a convenient way to increase collagen intake. They can be incorporated into drinks, meals, or taken as pills. Brands such as Zoba Fuel offer a variety of collagen supplements including grass-fed collagen peptides powder and collagen creamer.

Collagen plays a crucial role in maintaining our skin health and joint functionality. Its benefits are supported by recent research, and it can be obtained from dietary sources or conveniently from supplements.