If you are yet to hear of the benefits of using collagen, chances are you’re someone who isn’t spending a whole lot of time on social media. With many fads, popularity comes and goes (hello coconut oil!). But where there is science, things stick. And luckily enough, when it comes to collagen, the science, whilst still early days is incredibly promising. Here is why when it comes to collagen, it is more than just a fad.
But first, what is collagen?
Collagen is a protein, made up up 3 amino acids; glycine, proline and hydroxyproline. There are about 30 different types of collagen. The vast majority of the collagen in our bodies, however, is made up of types 1,2 and 3, as are most collagen supplements, as these are derived from cows, pigs and fish which contain the same types of collagen as humans. Of these three types, type 1, which gives skin its firmness; type II, which makes up our movable joints; and type III, which gives tissue its elasticity
Fun fact? Collagen makes up around 75% of the skin’s dry weight.
As we reach our late 20s, natural collagen production starts to slow down. This leads to a reduction in the quantity of collagen produced. This can lead to wrinkles and the appearance of skin starting to sag.
Can’t I just get it from food?
In short, no. Why? Firstly, consumption of enough, of the right type of collagen is difficult from food. Whilst bone broths are commonly flagged as being great sources of collagen, levels found in homemade (or store bought) broths varies greatly. So this means getting the required dose can actually be quite challenging. Secondly, the type of collagen matters. For example, Vida Glow’s marine collagen is extensively hydrolysed to enhance absorptive capacity. The lower the molecular weight, the increased bioavailability. Vida Glow marine collagen is absorbed 1.5 times more efficiently than other types of collagen, due to it’s molecular size. The size of the molecule found in a bone broth, versus in a supplement will vary greatly. So whilst including a bone broth may be great for your general wellbeing, consumption of a marine collagen supplement to improve the health of your hair, skin and nails, will be significantly more effective.
Does what I eat still matter?
This is a resounding YES. Making great food choices, drinking plenty of water, wearing sunscreen, and yes, avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol are all still key when it comes to having healthy skin.
So how does the supplement work?
Whilst the research here is early, it is compelling. Once marine collagen is ingested, it is absorbed and distributed by the bloodstream via blood vessels to the dermis, the deeper layer of the skin. The exciting thing here is the collagen peptides moved to where they were intended, rather than simply being digested and absorbed. This addition of the collagen supplement to the existing pool of collagen in the body further stimulates natural production of collagen in the body as well.
How much do I need each day?
Human studies have shown an improvement in wrinkles in 74% of those studied, taken at just 2.5g per day, with further improvement seen at doses of up to 10g per day.
As you can see, using marine collagen is more than just a fad to help improve the health of your hair, skin and nails.
I am not going to lie, I am SO excited to see the next steps in this exciting, fast paced area of research.
Want to learn more?
From time to time I write sponsored posts such as this, however views are entirely my own, and I only ever collaborate with companies and brands who resonate with me.
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Kielty CM E al. Type VI collagen microfibrils: evidence for a structural association with hyaluronan. – PubMed – NCBI n.d. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1323568
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