From our daily purchases to cosmetics to medications, and even the most unlikely locations like our cup of coffee, collagen is all around us. All of a sudden, they are recommended as being the best for your health, particularly for your skin and joints. But what is collagen really made of? Does collagen make financial and health sense? Should you blindly choose foods high in collagen?
Types of Collagen-Rich Foods and a Breakdown of Collagen
From the Greek word “kola,” which meaning “glue,” comes the term collagen. The most crucial protein in our bodies, collagen serves as the glue that holds everything together. In fact, a family of proteins with a main fiber-like structural framework of connective tissues is the most prevalent protein in human body.
Our: is where we most frequently find it.
- Skin\s Muscles\s Tendons\s Bones\s Ligaments
- vascular system
Collagen may be divided into numerous groups based on the amino acids that make up each kind. Kind 1 collagen is the most prevalent type and is mostly present in the skin, tendons, internal organs, and organic bone components. Type 2 collagen, which is present in cartilage, and Type 3 collagen, which is present in bones and lymphoid tissues, make up the vast majority of the body’s remaining collagen.
How Does Collagen Affect the Health of Joints and Skin?
Your body is made up of collagen, which also promotes healthy joints. In order to keep your joints moving easily, absorb shocks, and lower the chance of accidents, it aids in maintaining healthy tendons and cartilage. Additionally, it might lessen joint aches and pains. In skin care, particularly ageing, collagen is frequently mentioned. Your skin is mostly made of collagen. As it preserves the structure, suppleness, texture, and resilience of your skin, it gives your skin a young appearance.
When Must Collagen Concerns Be Raised?
As you become older, your body produces less collagen. As you age, your collagen levels begin to decline, and this process can be sped up by other elements including a bad diet, an unhealthy lifestyle, heredity, and too much sun exposure. Additionally, beyond the age of 30, your body starts to lose both collagen and the capacity to manufacture high-quality collagen.
The collagen in your body therefore changes from being a neatly structured network of fibers to a disorganized labyrinth. Environmental exposures can weaken and thin collagen fibers, which results in wrinkles on the skin’s surface. Nearly 60% of the cartilage that surrounds your bones and shields them from the shock of forceful motions is made up of collagen.
Joint issues and cartilage loss might result from a collagen shortage. Some indicators are:
- Crepe, wrinkled skin
- less flexible and more rigid tendons and ligaments
- muscle shrinkage and deterioration
- injuries, discomfort in the joints, even osteoarthritis
- digestive system issues brought on by the lining of your digestive tract.
How to Boost Your Body’s Collagen Levels
To make collagen, your body mixes amino acids with nutrients from meals. As a result, your body cannot make enough collagen if it lacks the critical components. Additionally, as you become older, your body might not be able to synthesis and absorb nutrients as well. Therefore, a bad diet, an unhealthy lifestyle, and ageing are the main causes of collagen deficit.
Although ageing is a normal part of life, you can regulate how much collagen you consume. Your collagen levels can be increased in one of two ways. By first altering your diet and then by using dietary supplements. Increased collagen consumption, whether from food or supplements, leads to an increase in protein, which builds up in the cartilage between your joints.
Even more intriguing and advantageous is the fact that consuming collagen might encourage your body to produce more collagen on its own. As a consequence, you may have more flexibility and mobility while experiencing less discomfort and inflammation. Please be aware, though, that consuming collagen won’t instantly restore or regenerate damaged cartilage or joints or even stop their normal loss due to ageing. It can only encourage your body to produce new collagen.
The Real Story Behind Collagen Supplements
Despite being abundant in our bodies, collagen has become a popular supplement that is said to improve the health of our joints and skin. Before making a purchase, there are a lot of things you should understand about collagen supplements.
The first is that the majority of collagen supplements, often referred to as “Hydrolyzed collagen” or “Collagen peptide,” which are typically sold as powders, tablets, and in certain meals, are made from animal products such eggs, fish scales, bovine bones, and skin. Consider your options again if you’re allergic to seafood or eggs, a vegan, a vegetarian, or any of these.
Collagen that has been broken down, or hydrolyzed, is easily dissolved in food and beverages. These supplements include nutrients that are good for the skin and joints in addition to amino acids, which are the protein’s building blocks. The difficult aspect of “Hydrolyzed collagen” is that it is impossible to determine which type of collagen is present in the commercially available collagen powders.
Therefore, until it is expressly indicated, you cannot choose the appropriate collagen supplement that will assist enhance your joint and skin health. Another misconception is the idea that taking collagen supplements can instantly make your skin and joints better. Since collagen is not designed to withstand the pH fluctuations in the stomach, it is instead broken down into its constituent parts during digestion.
Products containing collagen are also promoted as a miraculous treatment for many skin issues. The deeper layers of your skin contain more collagen naturally than the surface layers. Topical skin cream collagen fibers are too large to penetrate the skin’s outer layers. Even shorter collagen chains, like peptides, are unable to penetrate the skin’s outer layers, which renders the extravagant claims that collagen products are a skin wonder treatment untrue.
Skin lotions containing synthetic collagen may be effective because it creates a protective skin barrier that reduces water loss by forming a film-like layer on your skin. It cannot, however, be compared to good diet, which includes foods high in collagen, and utilizing sunscreen to promote outstanding skin health.
According to a thorough meta-analysis of 19 research that was published in the International Journal of Dermatology, supplementing with hydrolyzed collagen stimulates fibroblasts, or the cells that make collagen, which can enhance skin hydration, suppleness, and minimize wrinkles.
Top Foods Rich in Collagen for Joint and Skin Health
Fortunately, collagen may be found for free in many of our everyday meals. The formation of collagen is aided by the amino acids glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline, which are found in many high-protein diets. To manufacture collagen, your body also needs minerals including zinc, vitamin C, and copper. Here are the top foods that are high in collagen that you may include in your diet to obtain high-quality collagen for healthy and beautiful skin and strong joints.
Sources from animals
Most animal proteins, particularly those in meat and fish that include connective tissue, contain collagen. For instance, we discover them in tough meat pieces and fish bones and skin. Zinc is a mineral that is abundant in meats like beef and is necessary for the synthesis of collagen. Glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline, the three kinds of amino acids that make up collagen, are all present in beef. There’s a reason chicken is the primary component of a number of collagen supplements.
Collagen is abundant in chicken, notably the neck and cartilage portions. The neck and cartilage of the chicken can aid in the treatment of arthritis, according to a study published in the journal Clinical Interventions in Aging. Compared to other meats, fish flesh has a lower collagen content. The catch is that fish and shellfish contain ligaments and bones that are highly collagenized.
Increase your intake of leafy greens since they are high in vitamin C and chlorophyll, both of which are excellent for collagen formation and antioxidant characteristics. Bell peppers may also be a component of a balanced diet. Antioxidants, amino acids, vitamin C, and other minerals found in bell peppers increase the formation of collagen. Additionally, they contain capsaicin, which has anti-inflammatory qualities that lessen ageing symptoms.
The red bell pepper is the most advantageous of the bell peppers because it has a significant amount of vitamin C, which controls the production of collagen. Additionally, it includes vitamin A, which improves the condition of your skin and joints. Another food you may include in your diet is broccoli since it is high in vitamin C and includes trace levels of the minerals zinc and copper, both of which help to produce collagen.
The following vegetables are recommended for promoting collagen production:
- Chromatic Chard
- the bell pepper
- peas, green
Citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants, which are essential for collagen synthesis. When collagen is produced, vitamin C aids in the connecting of the amino acids. Getting enough vitamin C is essential because of this. As it removes impurities and reduces skin irritation, it also aids in giving you skin that is radiant. Berries are a fantastic source of vitamin C in addition to being recognized for their skin-friendly antioxidant qualities. In actuality, strawberries have a higher vitamin C content than oranges.
In addition to being high in vitamin C, copper, and zinc, tropical fruits also promote the formation of collagen. Sun-dried and grape tomatoes, among others, are rich in vitamin C, which promotes the creation of collagen. Lycopene, an antioxidant, is also present in tomatoes and is excellent for the health of your skin.
You may eat the following fruits as part of a healthy diet since they are high in collagen:
- Lemon\s Lime\s Grapefruit\s Clementine
- Mango\s Banana
- Guava\s Kiwi\s Pineapple\s Raspberry\s Blueberry
4. Beans and legumes
High-protein meals like legumes and beans include amino acids that help the body make collagen. They also include genistein, an isoflavone that boosts collagen. The nutrients and minerals found in legumes and legume products, such as zinc, copper, and vitamin C, are excellent for the health of the skin. Some legumes and beans that naturally increase collagen synthesis include:
- Beans, garbanzo
- Tofu beans
5. Seeds and nuts
Nuts and seeds are fantastic sources of collagen. Our bodies are unable to synthesize the necessary amino acids for collagen on their own, therefore they provide those for us. They may be incorporated into your diet in a variety of ways. They make good fast snacks. Try include one of these dishes in your upcoming dinner. Consider foods like smoothies, stir-fries, noodles, salads, sandwiches, and more.
Here are some meals high in collagen made from nuts and seeds:
- Almonds \s Cashews
- kernels of sunflower
- milk made from plants, such as soy and almond milk.
6. Complete Grains
Foods high in protein include whole grains. They include zinc and copper among other collagen-building minerals. The transition of amino acids into collagen is aided by the protein and nutrition. Because whole grains retain more of the vital nutrients for our bodies throughout processing, it is typically advised to move from refined grains to them for a more nutritious diet.
Here are some whole-grain foods that I suggest for promoting collagen:
1-Oat. 2-Brown rice. 3-whole wheat. 4-quinoa
In addition to consuming the aforementioned items, you should pay close attention to your sugar and water intake. Sugar is an adversary of collagen. The amino acids in collagen and elastin are linked by two of the most prevalent sugars, fructose and glucose, to produce dangerous substances known as AGEs (Advanced glycation end) products.
Inflammation and collagen degradation caused by AGEs are well-known effects. Water is the buddy of collagen. Researchers have established that water plays a crucial role in the tight bonding of collagen to its helical form. Water makes up 60% of the weight of collagen in its normal condition. Therefore, be sure you regularly consume a lot of water.
Maintain a balanced diet rich in whole foods such fruits, vegetables, lean meat, seafood, whole grains, beans, nuts, and seeds to promote the formation of high-quality collagen. To encourage collagen creation in your body, include the items mentioned above in your diet on a regular basis.
It’s recommended to speak with your doctor before using collagen supplements because there hasn’t been been non-industry-funded study on them. To assist you increase your collagen production naturally, we advise you to talk to your doctor about the optimal food and lifestyle plan.