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Ought to You Take Collagen Dietary supplements?

The wellness trade has an obsession with youth. So naturally, collagen has turn out to be and continues to be an enormous development for anti-aging and total well being.

There was some new analysis on collagen within the years since I wrote my first assessment on collagen dietary supplements, so I’m bringing it to you right here, together with my ideas (have they modified?) on taking oral collagen dietary supplements.

The difficulty with quite a lot of the research on collagen and pores and skin is that they’re completed on animals, they’re sponsored by makers of collagen dietary supplements, or they’re simply poorly completed basically. 

What’s collagen?

Collagen is a protein that’s made up of the amino acids glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline. It’s discovered within the pores and skin, bone, tendons, and ligaments of people and animals. Collagen is a inflexible structural protein, like scaffolding for our pores and skin and different physique components.

collagen benefits

We don’t have to eat collagen to provide it – our our bodies produce collagen from the vitamins we eat, particularly vitamin C, copper, zinc, and meals which might be excessive in protein like hen and fish. 

Collagen may assist our pores and skin look plump and hydrated, which is why, as we age, our pores and skin tends to sag and isn’t as elastic. Pores look bigger due to the lack of firmness. 

Different components, akin to smoking, stress, genetics, solar publicity, and poor weight loss program,additionally have an effect on the standard and fee at which we lose collagen within the pores and skin. 

Collagen manufacturing begins declining within the mid-twenties by round 1% per yr. 

In response to the American Academy of Dermatology, ladies lose as much as 30% of their collagen manufacturing within the first 5 years of menopause, which is simply sh*t luck. This results in crepey pores and skin, weakened muscle groups, and stiff ligaments and tendons. 

collagen and skin
Getting old course of. comparability of Younger and aged pores and skin. Collagen, Elastin and fibroblasts in youthful and older pores and skin. age-related adjustments within the pores and skin when Collagen fibers atrophy, and Elastin damaged. Vector illustration

It’s simply a part of getting older. Nothing – apart from surgical procedure – can repair these indicators of getting old.

What occurs after we take collagen?

Once we eat collagen, what occurs is similar as after we eat any protein. 

Protein meals are made up of chains of amino acids. Once we digest these meals, the amino acid chains get damaged down into particular person amino acids.

collagen benefits

The physique then takes these particular person amino acids and reassembles them into configurations that swimsuit its wants, then sends them the place they’re wanted. It’s not a certainty that the amino acids might be despatched to your pores and skin as collagen. We are able to’t management the place the proteins we eat, find yourself in our physique.

Though there are particular amino acids in our diets that construct collagen, these can be utilized in processes apart from collagen. 

For instance, proline – which we are able to eat in collagen dietary supplements however can be made by our physique out of one other amino acid referred to as glutamic acid – is utilized in pores and skin and joints, but additionally in muscle, in addition to the formation of different amino acid chains. So the entire proline you eat doesn’t essentially turn out to be collagen.

The opinions and science of how collagen in our weight loss program impacts our pores and skin are pretty blended. If collagen breaks down into its components with digestion, how then will consuming collagen lead to improved pores and skin look? 

That is the place I left my final collagen assessment. Nonetheless, I generally change my opinion when the science adjustments and will get up to date. This is perhaps the case with collagen dietary supplements.

Drumroll, please!

Do collagen dietary supplements enhance pores and skin?

Let’s check out the most recent analysis round collagen and pores and skin.

Firstly, the simplest collagens seem like derived from fish and cows (aka bovine collagen).

A number of evaluations and meta analyses (right here), (right here), (right here), have been launched displaying that hydrolyzed collagen aka collagen peptides, improves the looks of pores and skin, growing hydration and elasticity. Nonetheless, the problem is the meta analyses are sometimes solely pretty much as good because the research they use – and must be taken with a grain of salt.

Different current research on collagen (right here), (right here), (right here) additionally discovered beneficial outcomes by way of pores and skin look/hydration, though we have now to acknowledge the battle of curiosity in one of many research with a researcher working for a collagen complement firm. All three research had been additionally very small, with below 100 topics complete. 

The dosages in these research weren’t constant, and the ratio of glycine to proline and hydroxyproline had been distinctive. Some research used collagen merchandise that additionally had different components. All of that is problematic in the event you’re utilizing this analysis to show that collagen works, or in the event you’re seeking to discover the optimum dosing for a collagen complement.

There simply doesn’t appear to be any consistency throughout research. 

What we have now right here, is a number of research which might be a blended bag of sponsored, small, and probably flawed. Nonetheless, because the years have passed by, I haven’t seen many research on collagen which have not discovered beneficial outcomes the place pores and skin look is anxious.

It’s a basic case of, ‘the place there’s smoke, there’s hearth.’

If collagen dietary supplements assist with pores and skin hydration, it’s a logical clarification for the looks of fewer wrinkles. Extra hydrated pores and skin is much less crepey and wrinkly.

On condition that collagen dietary supplements seem like protected, right here’s my backside line about collagen and pores and skin:

Extra analysis must be completed. I’m speaking, bigger research with consistency in product and dosing and much more folks, together with no sponsorship.

Be sure you get the appropriate sort of collagen. Watch out for useful meals like popcorn and protein bars that include components like collagen extra for advertising than anything. 

Guarantee your collagen complement that has third-party testing for security. There have been points with heavy steel contamination of some collagen dietary supplements. Don’t simply purchase stuff off of Amazon; get a good model from a good retailer. 

Hydrolyzed collagen is one of the best type of collagen to take, because it has already been damaged down. 

Lastly, be reasonable about getting old. No complement or weight loss program goes to stop getting old or assist you ‘age in reverse.’ All of us age, and all of us present indicators of getting old. Sadly, we’ve been fed a dangerous narrative round ladies and getting old that stokes insecurity and sends us searching for the holy grail of youth.

The Galveston Weight-reduction plan e-book assessment – learn it right here.

Is collagen an excellent protein powder?

Collagen protein powder isn’t one of the best supply of protein. For one, it has a limiting amino acid – tryptophan – which prevents collagen from being an entire protein. Whey remains to be the gold customary for protein powders, because it has probably the most beneficial bioavailability and absorption fee. 

Nonetheless, in the event you’d like to make use of collagen as a protein powder, simply ensure that your weight loss program is full. That may be certain that you get that tryptophan from one other supply.

How about plant-based collagen?

This doesn’t exist. Collagen is current solely in animals. ‘Plant-based’ collagen dietary supplements include nutritional vitamins and minerals which might be wanted for collagen manufacturing within the physique. Calling these dietary supplements ‘collagen’ is deceptive, which is why quite a lot of them are named ‘collagen enhance.’

Most of us get sufficient of what we have to make our personal collagen. I wouldn’t suggest vegan collagen merchandise except your weight loss program is severely missing.

What about among the different claims round collagen?

Collagen and joint ache

One of many collagen advantages that appears fairly stable by way of analysis (right here), (right here), and (right here) has been the usage of collagen sort II for joint ache. This can be a totally different sort of collagen from sort I, so if you’re keen on making an attempt it, you’ll need to search for undernatured or sort II collagen.

Collagen and intestine well being 

Does collagen repair leaky intestine? 

A number of various well being practitioners appear to assume so. Bone broth does include collagen, though the quantity can range throughout merchandise.

The GAPS weight loss program assessment: does leaky intestine trigger illness?

Whereas bone broth could also be soothing, to say that the collagen in it could actually ‘seal up’ leaky junctions in intestine cells is a gross oversimplification. That’s a standard theme with these types of claims: the physique is much more advanced than how they make it appear. The cells of the intestine aren’t like bricks which have simply misplaced their mortar; to assist with elevated intestine permeability (that’s the precise analysis, not ‘leaky intestine’), it’s vital to take away the trigger, no matter that’s in every case.

I wrote about leaky intestine right here.

Must you take collagen on your pores and skin?

It could be price a attempt, however don’t anticipate miracles. There appears to be quite a lot of optimistic analysis round hydrolyzed collagen for pores and skin hydration and look, however the preponderance of that analysis appears to be decrease in high quality. 

Nonetheless, possibly there’s something to it?

What I don’t suggest you do is hearken to folks or corporations making large guarantees about collagen and the way it might help you ‘age in reverse’ or any of that nonsense. We have to normalize getting old and never use it as a advertising device.

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