Did you know that collagen accounts for up to 35% of the protein present in our bodies? We store and produce vast amounts of this essential protein that is responsible for keeping us and our skin young, strong, and supple. However, as we age, collagen production can start to slow. Fortunately, by taking collagen for skin it is possible to boost your collagen intake and ensure that your body is getting the collagen it needs to maintain vibrant and youthful skin.
Read on to find out the role that collagen plays in the body, and why this is integral to youthful, glowing skin.
Why Collagen Is an Anti-Aging Powerhouse for the Skin
The overarching function of collagen in the body is to hold everything together. Present in bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and skin, collagen acts as a binding agent. It also provides flexibility and ‘stretchiness’ in these areas.
In the skin specifically, collagen is responsible for a tight skin structure, high levels of skin elasticity, and ‘plumpness’.
When collagen production declines, science states that this is what is to blame for the dreaded signs of aging—such as wrinkles, fine lines, loose skin, dry skin, and sunken skin.
Collagen Can Reduce Wrinkles
Because of this collagen is a cornerstone of skin anti-aging.
According to research, taking collagen supplements can result in a noticeable decrease in wrinkles and an overall improvement in the condition of the skin.
One particular study’s results showed that participants who ingested a collagen supplement for 12 weeks showed marked increases in levels of skin hydration and elasticity.
These results show that by supplementing your body with extra collagen, as its natural production declines, you can maintain supple skin and even reverse effects of aging such as wrinkles.
Additionally, not only will supplementing with collagen keep you topped up and glowing, but the above research also reveals that consuming collagen can boost your body’s own collagen production process, which will further assist to increase collagen levels.
Collagen Also Ups the Production of Other Anti-Aging Proteins
Besides collagen, there are two other big player anti-aging proteins that work to keep the skin supple and young. These are fibrillin and elastin and they are the main components of elastic skin fibers.
According to research, both fibrillin and elastin production can be enhanced by the administration of collagen, which compounds the benefit of collagen supplementation.
Collagen Can Also Reduce Cellulite
There is another skin issue that many of us face—whether old, young, athletic or not—which collagen can help with. That is cellulite.
Although cellulite can worsen in individuals who have a high BMI, it can also occur in people who are athletic and relatively fit.
The reason for this is that cellulite is partially caused by a slow in collagen production. When the connective tissue around fat cells becomes weakened and loses its elasticity, this can be a significant contributing factor to the development of cellulite.
This is why individuals with a low BMI and very little fat can still develop cellulite. If one’s collagen levels are depleted, then no matter how little fat one has, this can start to show through and cause uneven skin texture.
Research has shown that women who took collagen supplements experienced a noticeable decrease in the appearance of cellulite, especially when cellulite levels were of medium severity.
Collagen Has a Number of Other Anti-Aging Benefits
Besides all the benefits that collagen can have for skin, it also has other anti-aging roles.
Muscle Mass Booster
As mentioned earlier, collagen also forms part of the muscles within our body, accounting for up to 10% of our muscle mass.
Research has indicated that taking a collagen supplement can stall the decline of muscle mass that occurs with age.
Additionally, a further study suggests that taking collagen can also enhance the synthesis of other muscle proteins such, as creatine, which is responsible for the muscle growth that occurs after exercise. In this study, a group of older men was given collagen supplements during a 12-week exercise program. After the 12 weeks, they had gained more muscle mass than the control group who exercised but did not take collagen.
Joint Health Aid
Another area where collagen can help is joint health. Joints utilize collagen to build cartilage and cushioning between the bones which facilitates optimum function and movement.
If collagen stores drop this can contribute to joint problems such as thinning cartilage, arthritis, osteoarthritis, and joint injuries.
Collagen supplementation has been shown to be able to ease the symptoms and decrease pain levels associated with joint problems.
One study showed that adults taking 2 grams of collagen per day experienced a significant reduction in joint pain and were better able to engage in physical activity after a supplementation period of 70 days.
In a further study, athletes with joint pain who took a higher dose of 10 grams saw similar results after 27 weeks.
As collagen is responsible for elasticity within the body, supplementing with collagen can also help to keep your whole body supple, something that is associated with youth and facilitates increased mobility and range of use in the body.
Collagen is also utilized in the arteries of the body. When levels drop, this can contribute to the hardening of arteries. Hardening of the arteries can increase the risk of heart attacks and seizures.
According to research, taking 16 grams of collagen a day can lead to significantly improved levels of artery stiffness.
Prevention of Bone Loss
In conjunction with a drop in collagen production, one may also experience bone loss. This is because bones also contain significant amounts of collagen.
According to research, women taking a collagen supplement can expect to not only retard bone loss but to also increase their bone mineral density.
Hair and Nail Strengthener
As collagen is a major component of both hair and nails, it can help to reduce the signs of aging in these areas as well, by promoting thicker and stronger hair shafts and guarding against brittle and weak nail formation.
How to Start Taking Collagen for Skin
As you can see, collagen is the underlying building block behind not only one’s skin, but also one’s bones, hair, nails, joints, and much more. By taking a collagen supplement you can fight skin aging—and also look after these other areas of your body.
To start consuming collagen for skin you can aim to get collagen from foods such as meat, bone broth, black beans, almonds, and soy products such as tempeh and tofu.
You can also choose to take a good collagen-containing supplement that you know will provide you with the daily levels that you want. Our collagen supplement also contains ingredients such as biotin and vitamin C, which combine to create the ultimate super supplement for your skin.