Collagen may be a bit of a buzzword at the moment, but it’s nothing new. Like anything that is naturally formed in the body, humans have relied on this vital nutrient to maintain healthy skin, bones and joints since the dawn of humankind.
In the 21st century, collagen has become a hot topic in the health and beauty industry, as science begins to reveal the benefits of collagen for skin health.
But what exactly is collagen? Why do you need it, and should you use a collagen supplement? Let’s find out…
Collagen: What You Need to Know
Let’s strip away the mystery and magic that surrounds a lot of what is written about collagen and reveal the facts.
In short, collagen is an insoluble protein that’s created in the body when certain amino acids are combined. You’ll find collagen all over your body, with 16 different types doing different things.
Type I collagen is the most abundant, giving strength and structure to your bones, teeth, tendons, cartilage and skin. In fact, collagen makes up around three quarters of your skin.
With such a significant presence, collagen plays a big part in skin elasticity and hydration, while it also contributes to strong hair and healthy nails. This is why collagen is playing more of a role in everyday beauty and skincare regimes.
While collagen may be plentiful in your body, as you reach your mid-20s, your existing collagen begins to break down. The bad news continues, as it also becomes more difficult for your body to produce collagen as you grow older.
This all adds up to less collagen in your body, which can be reflected in some signs of ageing. Think thinner, dryer, and less firm skin, alongside weakened cartilage.
As the wrinkles begin to appear, people start to look for ways to increase their collagen levels and combat the more undesirable signs of ageing.
But how do you do this?
How to Boost Your Collagen Levels
Collagen comes from animal sources, so including more collagen-rich foods in your diet can help naturally increase the amount of collagen in your body.
Foods Containing Collagen
This would suggest including more meat and fish in your diet, although with many of these foods, the collagen is largely stored in bones, cartilage and tendons, so eating lean meats may not be enough. This is why foods that include the grisly parts – such as bone broth – should be on your menu.
Aside from your diet, you can also look towards collagen supplementation to help boost your collagen levels.
Supplements in the form of powders or liquids may not be deemed essential, although they are often more potent and convenient than collagen-rich food sources, making them ideal for busy people and those watching their weight.
For example, our LQ Collagen Powders and Collagen Shots contain up to 10,000mg of marine collagen. To take in 10,000mg from food you would be consuming large quantities of foods that would be unsustainable for the average person.