Collagen seems to be everywhere these days, from lattes and brownies, to supplements and protein powders. The public is raving about collagen – but what exactly is it and what does it do for us?
Collagen is the most abundant protein found in the animal kingdom. It forms connective tissue and is made up of amino acids glycine, proline, hydroxylysine, and hydroxyproline. It is the main structural protein of different tissues found in skin, bone, cartilage, and tendons, and has been used in the food and medicine industries for over a decade.1 Beauty products, protein powders, and collagen supplements, which all claim to hold the secret fountain of youth, utilize collagen in the form of collagen peptides, and for good reason. Collagen peptides have been broken down by various enzymes in our body and are used as active components in many products because of their high bioavailability and good biocompatibility.1
Why is it so popular right now?
Research shows collagen has a positive effect on skin elasticity and skin photo-aging, a term that refers to premature aging of the skin caused by UV radiation, by improving moisture retention ability and repairing the endogenous collagen and elastin protein fibers.1 The same study found collagen peptides have positive effects on facial skin, reducing skin dryness and wrinkles, and increasing collagen content of the skin dermis when applied topically.1 Knowing this information, it’s no wonder supplement companies have created and heavily marketed collagen supplements as wrinkle-diminishing and beauty-boosting… and consumers are diving head first into the collagen craze.
Additionally, collagen has become increasingly popular because company claims that the protein can help with leaky gut and improve joint health (there is some research to support this notion). In light of this, consumers with digestive issues and other conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, are also jumping on the bandwagon to see if collagen can help.
But, is it worth it?
Are collagen supplements that promise beautiful, glowing skin worth the investment? It depends. If your diet is rich in amino acids from protein sources, vitamin C, and iron (which are used for the production of collagen in your body) then supplementation may not be necessary. It is always recommended that you try switching your diet & lifestyle first and foremost before resorting to supplementation for anything.
However, if you find you need that extra boost of protein in your diet, or you are yearning for strong, lustrous hair and glowing skin, try supplementing with collagen and see if it works for you. Please note most collagen supplements are derived from animal products. If you are vegan or vegetarian, look for collagen supplements that have a “plant-based” stamp.
Choosing a Collagen Supplement
1. Opt for unsweetened or flavorless. Flavored collagen supplements most likely contain added sugars, which can cause digestive distress and elevate blood glucose levels. Choose unsweetened or flavorless when you can and add a sweetener of your choice, such as stevia, if desired.
2. Look for a safety stamp. Since the Food and Drug Administration doesn’t regulate supplements, look to see if trustworthy organizations such as the UL or NSF have tested it for safety.
3. Check the ingredients list. As with all products you purchase for consumption, choose the brand that has the least amount of added ingredients. Look for added amino acids and hydrolyzed collagen or collagen peptides.
Our collagen that we have here at Hudson Wellness contains cofactors magnesium and vitamin C that enhance, protect, and preserve connective tissue. It has been strategically formulated to support connective tissue regeneration and stability.
Foods to consume for healthy hair, skin, and nails
As mentioned earlier, if you’re looking to enhance your health in any way, it’s better to change your eating habits long-term rather than find a quick fix with supplements. Some staple foods to include in your diet that boost collagen production include: oranges, lemons, berries, papaya, spinach, kale, broccoli, tomatoes, lentils, beans, pasture-raised, grass-fed meats, pasture-raised eggs, avocado, and wild-caught salmon.
Have you tried supplementing with collagen? What did you try? Stop by our TriBeCa store to try our Nutritionist approved collagen supplements that are 100% organic and extensively certified. We’d love to hear your thoughts!
Tag #hudsonwellness or mention us @hudsonwellness on Instagram to let us know what you think.
1. Song H, Zhang S, Zhang L, Li B. Effect of Orally Administered Collagen Peptides from Bovine Bone on Skin Aging in Chronologically Aged Mice. Nutrients. 2017; 9(11): 1209. doi: 10.3390/nu9111209
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