Collagen is the fountain of youth. But you don’t have to take it in pills.
Collagen supplements are a popular trend that has been popping up if you have been following the internet. Collagen is being marketed as a “fountain of youth.” It can be purchased in powder, liquid, liquid, and gummy forms. A host of dermatological treatments is available, including the famous Kim Kardashian vampire facial, promoting collagen formation.
Collagen supplements and other elaborate skincare treatments can promise many benefits. They include better skin and nails and improved gut health. Do they work? What is collagen? I researched and spoke to Tony Castillo, a registered dietitian/nutritionist, to answer all my questions.
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What is collagen?
Collagen plays a vital role in your body’s daily function. It’s the most abundant protein within the body. Castillo says that collagen can be thought of as a glue that holds things together. It is the primary building block of tendons, ligaments, bones, muscles, skin, and bones. It helps rebuild your body after injuries. This is especially true for sites such as tendons, ligaments, and muscles. You can take a moment to acknowledge collagen as the glue that holds your body together.
Your body makes its own collagen through the combination of amino acids. You can also promote natural collagen production with vitamin C, zinc, and copper.
How much collagen do I need?
As we age, collagen production in our bodies decreases. Low collagen may be causing your wrinkles and aches.
Castillo says the following signs could indicate that you might be missing vital protein:
- Ligaments and tendons that are less flexible
- Skin wrinkles
- Weak muscles
- Joint pain or cartilage damage
- Thinning of the lining in the digestive tract can cause gastrointestinal problems
You should consult your doctor if you have any symptoms that are affecting the quality of your life. It might be worth considering how to increase collagen levels if you just want smoother skin.
Are collagen supplements and skin treatments essential?
You can definitely make more collagen naturally, but you might wonder if the popular collagen supplements and skin treatments really work. Unsatisfying answer: They kind of do.
Let’s begin with supplements. Castillo suggests that active people take collagen supplements an hour before working out. There is scientific evidence to support this recommendation.
A comprehensive literature review revealed that collagen supplements may help with skin aging and wound healing and increase skin elasticity. However, these preliminary results do not prove their effectiveness. Be careful when looking online, as many studies were conducted by companies that make collagen supplements. You shouldn’t place too much trust in them.
On the other hand, Castillo doesn’t see any compelling reasons to invest in collagen-boosting skin treatments. These treatments are often expensive, and the majority of the research supporting them is not conclusive.
However, specific treatments may be worth your while if you have the funds. Microneedling, which is believed to increase collagen, can treat scarring on the skin and stretch marks. Ultrasound therapy is effective in tightening and lifting facial muscles. This research is not conclusive, so it’s worth trying collagen supplements before making the giant leap.
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How can I naturally produce more collagen?
You don’t have to resort to taking expensive supplements or using unnatural skin treatments to boost your collagen. There are other natural ways you can increase your levels.
The best way to be effective is through a well-balanced diet Diet. Your body uses amino acids, vitamin A, vitamin C, and zinc to make collagen. To obtain the required amino acids, you can eat (Castillo, specifically names proline & glycine) – Eggs, bone broth, beans, and meat. For Vitamin C go for bell peppers, berries, and citrus fruits. Eat Meat, shellfish, nuts and whole grains as well as beans, meats, legumes, and whole grains.
For Zinc And Copper the bone broth would be the best food to increase collagen levels. The collagen and minerals in beef, chicken, and fish bones are released into the water when they’re simmered. This creates a rich and nutritious liquid. Making your own bone broth takes a few days.
This article is intended for informational and educational purposes only. It is not meant to be a diagnosis or treatment. For any questions regarding a medical condition or to achieve your health goals, consult a qualified physician.