Lately there is so much to talk about collagen and it’s benefits for skin and joints, we thought we would unpack exactly what collagen is, where you get it from and why we should be having more of it.
Firstly, collagen is the main structural protein found in skin and other connective tissues, you could say it is part of what holds us together.
COMPONENTS OF COLLAGEN
Protein is all over the body, in bones, tendons and ligaments and 30 percent of these proteins is made up of collagen which in turn is made up of amino acids like glycine, proline, hydroxylproline and arginine.
As we age, we produce less collagen and that’s why we get wrinkles. An abundance of collagen will keep your skin looking more plump and will also keep your muscles and joints from becoming achy.
Certain foods help build collagen or restore collagen that’s been depleted. Here’s a list of some of them.
Bone broth has seen increasing popularity recently and for good reason. It’s filled with collagen and is a powerful way to restore collagen in the skin. Dietary collagen delivers collagen directly to your cells.
*RED GREEN ORANGE & BLUE
Colourful veggies like green spinach and kale, orange carrots and sweet potatoes, red beets, tomatoes and peppers all have antioxidants that protect against free radicals that break down collagen. All the berries, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries have anti-oxidants in abundance.
Garlic contains lipoic acid and taurine, important components instrumental in building damaged collagen. The sulphur in garlic is a primary part of collagen production.
There are many other foods that help boost and sustain collagen stores but simply including these three groups will create a difference.
THINGS TO AVOID
If you want to keep collagen levels high the three best things you can do is to avoid sugar. It significantly interferes with collagen’s ability to repair itself. Smoking chemical laden cigarettes is also a biggie and too much time spent in the sun can damage the collagen producing cycle in the body.
Collagen is active in repairing leaky gut syndrome – the condition where detrimental toxins can pass through your digestive tract. The way collagen works is it soothes your gut lining healing damaged cell walls and infusing them with amino acids. It’s described as ‘sealing and healing’ the protective lining of the gastrointestinal tract. With so many dire conditions resulting from inflammation in the gut it’s an excellent practice to ensure you have the best collagen stores you can get.
If you are thinking of taking a collagen supplement, look for the highest quality you can get.
TAKING COLLAGEN IS KNOWN TO HAVE VARIOUS BENEFITS – HERE ARE JUST FIVE OF THEM.
*JOINT PAIN – having enough good quality collagen can ease joint pain and stiffness.
*SKIN AGEING – collagen is said to keep ageing at bay, it has a great effect on skin.
*MUSCLE BUILDING – the presence of collagen helps build muscle and burn fat in the body.
*CELLULITE – by helping the connective tissue in the skin, it can reduce the appearance of cellulite.
*DIGESTION – there is a link between digestion and collagen stores, many who have supplemented with collagen report increased digestive health.
*HAIR & NAILS – Protein from collagen helps build fingernails, hair and teeth and this could be the difference between resounding health and conditions like splitting nails and hair.