Maybe you have heard it on the news or read it in a magazine: Collagen is the next big thing. They all talk about the marvels of Collagen and how it does wonders to your skin, hair and fingernails. But, how does it work? Is it right for me? For this article, we will go through the particularities of Collagen, why it is so hot right now and what it can do for you.
Ok, what is Collagen?
It is a protein responsible for the structure, firmness and elasticity of your skin. It is naturally produced by your body; however, it can also be found in foods like meat, jelly, nutrient powders, beauty creams and supplements. It is the most abundant protein in your body, and it is composed by a series of chains of amino acids that offer resilience and flexibility to our muscles and tissues.
This protein plays a major role keeping firm and united your body cells, working not only for your skin but also in favor of the integrity of your muscles, ligaments, tendons and joints, improving its health. It also protects our muscles and vital organs by being a part of the internal walls of your blood vessels, your corneas, teeth, gums and your scalp.
Over the years, the internal production of this protein is reduced. When people reach their 40’s, the production of collagen is half than the one you had when you were in your teens. The lack of Collagen leads to faster ageing. However, don’t be afraid! By having a healthy diet rich in protein and nutritional supplements, you can slow down the potential deter of your bones and muscles. Keeping a good balance having chicken, fish, red meat, soy and jelly on regularity is a great way to produce your own Collagen.
It is important to always keep present that our bodies all metabolize nutrients differently and Collagen is no exception: This is a “large” molecule and it is hard to absorb. When Collagen is taken “raw”, the body won’t be able to properly metabolize it and it can even have effects like prolonged stomach aches if you are not accustomed.
Some of the most important benefits of Collagen:
- It prevents the appearance of cellulite.
- It strengthens your fingernails.
- It strengthens your hair and aids to its natural beauty.
- It decreases the appearance of stretch marks.
- It increases the natural elasticity of your skin.
- It prevents and delays the appearance of wrinkles and lines of expression.
- It helps to repair your joints and ligaments. It is especially recommended for people and athletes who have suffered from bad injuries.
- It delays your ageing internal processes.
Which foods are rich on Collagen?
It is very easy to complement your current levels of Collagen in your body. The foods you can obtain it naturally are:
- Red meat.
- White meat, chicken especially.
- Flavorless jelly
The best way to stop the pass of time and keep a firm and elastic skin is to have a healthy consumption of these foods on a daily basis.
It is important to always combine your intake of Collagen with foods rich in Vitamin C like orange, kiwi, lemon, tangerine, papaya and pineapple. The main reason is that Vitamin C is responsible to allow the correct absorption of Collagen by your organism. If you want to take Collagen capsules or its powder supplements, it is recommended to take them mixed with orange, pineapple or kiwi juice to increase its effectiveness.
Most cold meats and sausages have a high content of Collagen, however, its levels of fat, sugar and cholesterol are also high, so we don’t recommend having these foods if you want to have a healthy consumption of Collagen.
When is the time to have Collagen?
Collagen supplements should be taken when the concentration of this protein begins to diminish in your body, causing symptoms like:
- A decrease in the thickness of your hair
- An increase in the flabbiness and a lack of elasticity in your skin
- The appearance of wrinkles and expression lines
- The appearance of stretch marks
- Dehydrated and dry skin
- A decrease in the density of your bone structure, presenting similar cases like osteopenia and osteoporosis.
- Weakness in your joints and ligaments
When these symptoms begin, it is necessary to increase the intake of this protein in your organism. You can get it from special capsules or powder supplements. They are a great way to balance the levels of Collagen in your body. These products can be especially important at about age 40, when people experiment a drastic decrease in the natural production of Collagen, increasing the rate of the aging process.
However, it is important to keep in mind that these treatments must be advised and recommended by a professional nutritionist, mainly because some of these supplements are composed by hydric Collagen and a mix of different amino acids, vitamins and minerals that might have secondary effects on your health. One of the best things of collage is that if you don’t want to deal with all of that, most skin, fingernail and hair products are highly infused with this protein. However, a healthy diet on collagen and Vitamin C will also increase the effectivity on your body metabolism. Having lots of water will help too.
As evidence, the importance of Collagen is vital for your health, vitality and plays a major role in your aging process. You can always delay the inevitable pass of time in your body by having a healthy intake of foods rich on Collagen. Not only it has effects on your hair, skin and fingernails but it is also vital for your muscles, tissues and your bone structure. If you are interested in having an extra dose of Collagen, don’t forget to consult a professional, who will guide you through the best supplements, diets and even will teach you a couple of healthy and tasty recipes for you to try at home.