I’m sure you all have seen posts raving about collagen all over social media these days BUT what is it and can it really do all the incredible things it’s suppose to do?
I’ve been holding off doing this post for awhile because I wanted to speak about collagen from my own personal experience. For the past 6 months I’ve been using Vital Protein’s collagen mostly to help with my joints from running, prevent bone loss/ damage from my awful shin splints and decrease my anixety. With all the miracle supplements on the market I never expected to notice a difference from collagen but spolier alter…I fell in love with this supplement and really am a believer in the power of collagen.
But before I get into my personal thoughts/feelings/opinions about collagen let’s start with the basics…
What is collagen?
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and is the substance that holds the body together- think of it kind of like glue. It’s found in your bones, muscles, skin and tendons providing structural support, strength and elasticity. However, as we age collagen production naturally declines which is why skin starts to sag, people develop wrinkles/fine lines, joints get weak…etc. Fun stuff…NOT!
Collagen often is confused with gelatin so let’s clear that up really quick. Gelatin is simply collagen that has been cooked.
And what’s the difference between collagen, collagen peptides and collagen hydrolysate? Collagen peptides and hydrolysate are simply collagen that has been broken down making it easier to digest. These forms of collagen are often found as a powered supplements that can be added to drinks, foods, baked goods…etc.
What are the benefits of consuming collagen?
Most people just focus on the beauty benefits of consuming collagen (enhancing skin, hair and nail health). Don’t get me wrong I’m all about something that can make my hair and skin better but the real benefits I care about is are what collagen can do for my body.
Benefits of collagen:
- Bone health- Did you know your bones are 90% collagen? Collagen peptides may have beneficial effects on bone metabolism and may increase bone mass density!
- Joint health- When you don’t have enough collagen in your joints your body moves with less ease, leading to stiffness, swollen joints and more. Having enough collagen can help protect the degradation of the connecting tissues in athletes and studies have shown supplementing with collagen can reduce risk of injuries on muscles, tendons and ligaments.
- Digestion- Collagen may help coat the digestive tract and heal your intestinal lining improving digestion, decreasing bloating, elevating energy levels…etc! Yes please!
- Balance hormones- The amino acid glycine found is collagen helps balance the absorption of other amino acids in the blood steam balancing hormones, improving immunity and decreasing stress and anxiety.
How can you incorporate collagen into your diet?
I personally put 1 scoop of Vital Proteins collagen into my tea at night. It dissolves within seconds and is tasteless. When looking for a powdered collagen just be sure it has VERY clean ingredients ideally from grass-fed, pasture raised cows or wild-caught, non-GMO fish. Powdered collagen can easily be added to smoothies, soups, oatmeal, tea, coffee, plain water, baked goods…the possibilities are endless and I promise it does not change the flavor or texture at all.
If you’re not into supplementing collagen don’t worry! Animal products like bone broth, eggs, fish, poultry, milk…etc can also help boost your body’s collagen formation.
So does collagen live up to the hype?
I really do think supplementing collagen is beneficial especially if you are very active, older or suffering from stress/anxiety! For more very detailed information about collage please review here. As always please consult with your doctor before supplementing anything new.
Personally, I have been using Vital Protein’s Marine Collagen (NOT SPONSORED) every single day for the past 6 months.
Here’s my thoughts:
- Beauty- I have noticed that my skin looks much more moist/ plump and my hair and nails grow so fast I can hardly keep up.
- Bones/ joints- As a female bone health is so important. I personally have no idea how much collagen has helped with bone density but my joints are forever thankful. I notice I get less sore after workouts/ runs and never get those scary strains in my muscles anymore. Is it the collagen…who knows but my body feels great!
- Digestion- My digestive system has never been better. I very rarely get bloated and have regular bowel movements. Maybe it’s the collagen or maybe all the kombucha and gut shots I’ve been drinking.
- Stress/ anxiety- OMG! If there is 1 thing supplementing collagen over the past 6 months has helped it’s my anxiety! I was having regular panic attacks early last year and crippling anxiety and ever since taking my daily collagen I have not had 1 panic attack and my anxiety has dramatically decreased.
- Hormone balance- As you all know from this post I’m in the process of trying to balance out my body. My doctors are in charge of ruling about serious medical conditions but I’ve been trying everything to naturally balance my body again…stay tuned.
Do you supplement with collagen?
If so, have you noticed any physical differences in your body?
What;s your favorite brand of collagen?