One of the latest trends among health and wellness aficionados is using different forms of collagen supplements. Collagen is not exactly a new discovery, having been discovered back in the 1930s. However, recent studies have been able to confirm many claims regarding the major benefits of increasing collagen intake. Nowadays, collagen is even referred to as one of the “building blocks” of the human body.
But what is collagen, and how can you add collagen intake to your daily routine? This article will help you understand the best health benefits of collagen and how to incorporate collagen into your regular diet.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is a complex structural protein that makes up much of our skin, bone, joints, and connective tissues. While the human body does produce collagen naturally, the production rate begins to drop once you reach your mid-twenties. At this point, many people choose to supplement their collagen supply to help counteract some of the effects of aging.
Thus far, 28 types of collagen have been identified by researchers, but three of them, Type 1, Type 2, and Type 3, make up most of the body’s protein structure. The good news is that the human body isn’t the only source of collagen; it can be used and consumed in a number of different forms.
How Is Collagen Beneficial to Your Health?
Collagen provides a host of benefits to the human body. Some of the best benefits of collagen include the following:
- Healthy and Glowing Skin– Since skin is comprised largely of collagen, collagen intake can noticeably impact the appearance of your skin. As the collagen production in your body decreases, your skin starts to sag, and lines start appearing on your face. If properly supplemented with collagen, your skin can help sustain its youthful appearance as you age.
- Increased Bone Density and Joint Strength- Collagen is also a vital element of bones and joints. Research shows that increase collagen intake can reduce joint stress and pain, and help may help some people (athletes in particular) fight off osteoarthritis. Also, chances of injuries like sprains and dislocations decrease with stronger bones and joints.
- Muscle Mass Maintenance– As people age, their muscle mass typically begins to deteriorate. Since muscles are partially made up of collagen, it makes sense that increasing collagen intake could have a positive effect. While more research needs to be done in this area, some studies have already shown than increase collagen intake could help strengthen and maintain muscles.
How Can You Add Collagen to Your Diet?
Now that you understand the potential benefits of providing the body extra collagen, you may be wondering how to incorporate this practice into your daily routine. You can achieve this through collagen-rich foods, collagen serums, and powdered collagen. However, keep in mind that the way you intake collagen can dictate its effects, so be sure to talk to your doctor about which form could help you the most.
To increase collagen intake through your diet, you should focus on eating collagen-rich foods like bone broth, fish, eggs, citrus fruits, chicken, and beef. However, if making major dietary changes doesn’t fit your lifestyle, you can opt to supplement your collagen intake with powders or capsules.
What are the Long Term Benefits of Collagen Supplements?
Essentially, collagen supplements help to retain the body’s fitness and youthful appearance. To experience their long-term benefits, such as maintaining skin elasticity and preventing joint pain, you have to take collagen supplements for an extended period of time.
The long-term benefits of these supplements become apparent based on the volume and form of intake. Usually, you can see noticeable changes within a couple of weeks with powdered collagen, while the effects of collagen food intake can take months to show.
Now that you understand the basics of collagen, you can talk to your physician about using supplements to address some of the ailments that come along with age. If you’re still young and healthy, forming healthy eating habits early on can do you a world of good.