The term “collagen” has generated a lot of recent buzz in the world of health and wellness. Within the last decade or two, medical researchers have uncovered more about collagen, despite being discovered almost a century back. With breakthroughs in medical research, scientists have recently been able to test and substantiate many of the claims surrounding the use of collagen supplements.
What Exactly is Collagen?
Collagen is an abundant protein in the human body that gives structure to several connective tissues, including skin, bones, muscles, cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. For this reason, some refer to collagen as the “glue” that holds the body together. There are almost 30 types of collagen, beginning with Type 1. Each category offers unique collagen benefits.
While the human body naturally produces its own collagen, collagen production slows once you reach your mid-twenties. At this point, many people choose to increase collagen levels with supplements to maintain peak health.
How Does Collagen Work in Your Body?
The most prominent collagen type in the entire human body is Type 1 collagen. It accounts for more than ninety percent of the body’s collagen count and provides structure to skin, bones, tendons, fibrous cartilage, connective tissue, and teeth. Type 1 collagens are made up of densely-packed muscle fibers. Type 2 collagen forms the elastic cartilage that cushions joints from repetition stress and Type 3 collagen provides structural support to your muscles and bones.
When you take collagen supplements, the powder form being the most popular, the ingested supplements travel to different parts of the body. The body then absorbs the collagen as amino acids.
What Does Collagen do to Help Your Bone and Joint Health?
To put it simply—a lot! As previously mentioned, collagen provides structure to the bones and joints, and research shows that taking supplemental collagen may have significant positive effects. Collagen promotes cartilage growth by keeping the skeletal structure smooth and functional as you grow older. It also replenishes bone density, preventing bone loss, which happens naturally as the body ages. And last but not least, it helps prevents joint paint after large bouts of physical stress.
How Can You Add Collagen into Your Daily Routine?
Now that you know all about collagen and how it functions let’s dive into how you can add collagen to your daily routine. You can increase your body’s collagen levels by using serums and powders or by increasing your intake of collagen-rich foods. Keep in mind that depending on how you ingest it, collagen interacts with the body differently.
For a collagen-rich diet, you can eat foods like bone broth, fish, eggwhites, leafy greens, and citrus fruits. Any food that contains a lot of Vitamin C, proline, glycine, and copper are great sources of collagen. You can also increase your collagen intake with powdered collagen supplements. These supplements can be quickly absorbed and spread across the body.
With so many potential benefits for bone and joint health, increasing collagen intake is a popular wellness practice for those showing the signs of aging. A major contributor to the popularity of these supplements is that they make getting enough collagen quick and easy. If you plan to collagen supplements to your daily routine, be sure to check in with your doctor before getting started.