Collagen is discovered all through the physique in muscle tissue, bones, connective tissue and pores and skin, and is one thing we create ourselves from amino acids. It’s the most ample protein within the physique, however you could have heard there are some potential advantages of collagen when taken as a dietary complement.
As we age, our our bodies grow to be much less efficient at making collagen, and we might discover ourselves with brittle nails, thinner hair and extra fragile pores and skin. That is because of the presence of collagen within the epidermal layer of the pores and skin, which is the place our hair follicles reside and age-related collagen manufacturing drop off. In addition to the seen indicators of getting older, we might really feel the results of much less collagen in our our bodies within the type of joint ache and weaker muscle tissue.
We’ve spoken to specialists about the primary advantages of collagen and whether or not collagen dietary supplements could also be helpful as we become older. Searching for extra methods to high up your protein consumption? Try our round-up of the finest protein powder to help muscle development.
1. Pores and skin well being
A evaluate within the Gerontology (opens in new tab) journal signifies that the age-related loss and fragmentation of collagen fibrils (the protein construction) could cause delayed wound therapeutic and even pores and skin most cancers growth because the pores and skin is weakened. As such, many topical anti-aging lotions include collagen, though this does little greater than moisturize the pores and skin.
Dr Deborah Lee, a medical physician and consultant for Dr Fox On-line Pharmacy (opens in new tab), explains to Dwell Science that collagen manufacturing drops off as we age, which results in pores and skin sagging. “As we age, the manufacturing of collagen slows and the collagen produced is much less environment friendly – which underlies most of the adjustments we see with getting older, corresponding to wrinkling and sagging of the pores and skin, joint ache, lack of top, and fractures,” she says. “The construction of collagen is organized with a sophisticated fiber system, with chains of amino acids organized in fibrils, like robust ropes, to supply a good and dependable help construction.”
Having labored for a few years within the U.Okay’s Nationwide Well being Service, initially as a GP, after which as Lead Clinician for an built-in Neighborhood Sexual Well being Service, Dr Deborah Lee now works as a well being and medical author, with an emphasis on girls’s well being. She is a menopause specialist.
A 2019 evaluate within the Journal of Medication in Dermatology (opens in new tab) signifies that whereas collagen in pores and skin lotions isn’t efficient, taking an oral collagen complement within the type of collagen tripeptide noticed notable enhancements to pores and skin elasticity. The evaluate concludes that whereas analysis into collagen for pores and skin well being continues to be in its early phases, outcomes are promising for collagen supplementation.
2. Joint well being
A evaluate within the Mechanisms of Ageing and Growth (opens in new tab) signifies that mobile degeneration as we age could also be chargeable for the event of osteoarthritis later in life. The evaluate highlights a number of causes of this mobile degeneration, and one of many components talked about is the diminished ranges of collagen within the physique as we age.
Dr Lee tells Dwell Science that generally these with arthritis take collagen to help joint well being. “Collagen will be taken as a complement to deal with joint ache in these with arthritis. The
scientific identify is collagen hydrolysate, however additionally it is known as hydrolysed collagen, purified gelatine, HCP and kind 2 collagen,” she says. “Collagen is bought as capsules which include collagen often made out of beef, pork or fish bones, which have been boiled and processed.”
A meta-analysis in Worldwide Orthopedics (opens in new tab) reveals promising enhancements in osteoarthritis signs when sufferers got collagen orally. When outcomes had been in contrast in opposition to a number of totally different scales, many confirmed an enchancment to stiffness, though reported ache and practical limitation sufferers skilled was not considerably modified.
3. Muscular help and therapeutic
A British Journal of Diet (opens in new tab) examine into the impacts of collagen peptide supplementation on aged males when mixed with resistance coaching confirmed an enchancment in physique composition and muscle power. As resistance coaching places the muscle tissue underneath stress, the applying of collagen, a structural protein, might assist muscle tissue successfully heal from that stress, growing power and tone.
Along with this, some medical procedures use collagen membranes or grafts to advertise sooner wound therapeutic. A evaluate within the Worldwide Journal of Biomedical Sciences (opens in new tab) discovered that bovine collagen grafts create a positive surroundings for bone regeneration. The evaluate notes that 3% of individuals have an allergic response to collagen, so you ought to be cautious when taking a complement for the primary time.
4. Wholesome coronary heart
Collagen supplementation can also promote cardiovascular well being. Analysis within the Journal of Atherosclerosis and Thrombosis (opens in new tab) the place sufferers got two day by day dietary supplements of collagen tripeptide over six months signifies that collagen can enhance indicators of atherosclerosis (the hardening of arteries attributable to plaque buildup). A number of strategies had been used to measure the development, together with testing blood lipid ranges. The examine concluded that collagen tripeptide can be utilized as an efficient therapy or preventative measure.
5. Stronger hair and nails
A scientific trial within the Journal of Beauty Dermatology (opens in new tab) discovered that collagen supplementation can considerably enhance the situation of brittle nails. Sufferers noticed a rise in nail development and 88% of the contributors noticed an enchancment even 4 weeks after the therapy.
Hair and nails are made primarily of keratin, which is one other structural protein, however collagen performs a task within the well being of our scalp and the layer of our pores and skin which incorporates hair follicles. Having adequate collagen inside our our bodies contributes to wholesome hair follicles and by extension, wholesome hair, as seen in analysis in Experimental Dermatology (opens in new tab). It additionally incorporates the amino acids wanted to make keratin.
This text is for informational functions solely and isn’t meant to supply medical recommendation.