What is Collagen Protein?


Whether from the media, newspaper articles, or even beauty influencer… it’s likely that you’ve already heard the buzz around collagen. We usually hear that collagen is good for aesthetic reasons, as it helps support our skin, hair, and nails. You can find collagen in anti-wrinkle creams, skin moisturizers, and overall beauty products. Collagen is also sold in powders and peptides, and it’s even present in flavorful gummies that taste like delicious candy.

But did you know that collagen is way more than a beauty supplement? Let’s take a deep dive into what collagen really is and all the benefits it has to offer!

Collagen Protein

Yes, you read right: collagen protein. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body; it makes up one third of all that protein! It’s found in your skin, hair, and nails, and even in your muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Collagen is known as the “glue that keeps the body together” because collagen’s fibers are what hold things together in your body, such as your muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, and skin.

There are 16 types of collagen in your body, but over 90% belong to type 1, 2, and 3. Below is a quick summary on these different types of collagen:

Type 1 collagenis the most abundant in humans. It can be found in your hair, skin, bones, tendons, nails and organs. Type I is commonly associated with beauty product as it has been shown to help with hair and nails, making them strong and healthy. Type 1 collagen is so densely packed together that its even stronger than steel!

Type 2 is found in your cartilage, which is the connective tissue that protects your bones and joints. Type 2 is extremely important for joint health.

Type 3 collagen is usually grouped with Type 1 collagen as they both work together to support the skin, hair, nails, bones, and muscles. Type 3 is usually found in your skin and organs.

Collagen is essential in our bodies for a number of reasons. Collagen provides structure to our bones, skin, and connective tissue. It’s responsible for our skin elasticity, the strength of our hair and nails, and even the flexibility of our joints. Since collagen is a protein, it helps improve our muscle mass and prevent bone loss. Collagen is also linked to our gut and cardiovascular health, as well as mood and anxiety.

With the help of Vitamin C, your body naturally produced collagen. However, as you get older, your collagen production starts to decline. Collagen starts to decline around your late twenties, in which case the collagen you produce isn’t as effective as the collagen produced during your youth. Collagen production is also affected by sun exposure, smoking, sugar consumption, air pollution and inadequate diets. When collagen starts to decline, our overall elasticity declines as well. You start losing the “glue” that is keeping everything today. That’s when you begin to see fine lines and wrinkles which usually go alongside joint pain, dry hair, and brittle nails.

Should You Take a Collagen Supplement?

We’re all bound to age and to be exposed to different factors that affect collagen production. This isn’t one of those things that we can escape. What we can do is supply our bodies with adequate levels of collagen to encourage its production and to slow down the effects of its decline. Here are a couple of reasons to try adding collagen to your diet:
• Joint health: When we start to lose collagen, our joints start to feel tender and achy. Adding collagen to our diet can play a role in reducing swollen joints and tenderness by maintaining the integrity of your cartilage, which is what cushions the joints.
• Recovery: Whether you’re recovering from surgery or from a workout, collagen can help speed up the recovery process by providing the necessary amino acids.
Healthy skin, hair, and nails: When collagen declines, we lose the strength, moisture and elasticity of our skin, hair, and nails. Adding collagen can help decrease the creation of wrinkles, as well as promote strong and healthy hair and nails.
Bone mass: Bone mass reduction may lead to conditions such as osteoporosis, which is characterized by low bone density and linked with a higher risk of bone fractures. Consuming collagen supplements may help reduce the risk of bone disorders and may help lower levels of proteins in the blood that stimulate bone breakdown.
Digestion and gut health: Collagen contains Glycine, Glutamine, and Proline, amino acids that help with gut and digestion. This combination can help the stomach absorb nutrients, prevent inflammation in the intestinal lining, increase metabolism, and support digestive health.
Cardiovascular health: Proline also helps repair tissue in your arteries and regulate blood pressure.
Muscle growth: Muscle growth is associated with protein, but we rarely add collagen to the equation. Remember that collagen is a protein, so it contains the amino acids needed to fortify and grow your muscles.

What Else Can You Do to Help Collagen Production?

As with everything, keep a well-balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. Take your Vitamin C, which helps with collagen production, and avoid excess sugar and sun exposure (as if you needed any other reason to put your sunblock)! You can also eat collagen-rich foods that can help with collagen production. Bone broth, made by simmering animal bones in water, is one of the most popular options. Chicken, fish, egg whites, fruits, garlic, and cashews are also rich in collagen. 

Takeaway 

If you think that collagen is this all-powerful protein capable of doing great things to our body, you’re totally right! We produce it naturally and get to enjoy its benefits unnoticed until it starts to decline. We need to take care of our body and supplement correctly so we can keep on enjoying it!

Our product, Proteinex, has 18,000mg of collagen per serving with no fat, carbs, or sugar - and only 72 calories. To enjoy its benefits, try it today or check the product page for more information.

References:

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S095869461000141X 

http://darwinian-medicine.com/10-reasons-why-you-shouldnt-use-whey-protein-supplements/https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5793325/ 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4293047/ 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5350548/ 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22988649 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4594048/