There’s a lot of talk about collagen lately, from capsules to powders. You’ve probably questioned the hype and wondered whether it’s necessary. I certainly have. Let’s dive in!

What is collagen?

First and foremost, we need to know what collagen is. Collagen is a protein found throughout our body and is extremely vital. It accounts for around 30% of our body’s total protein. Collagen provides strength and support to our bones, tendons, and muscles. For our skin, it supports elasticity and suppleness, helping to keep our skin from sagging!

Why is collagen necessary, and why do people supplement with is?

The hard truth is that collagen starts to deplete in our bodies by 1% every year from the age of 30. Hence, there’s a growing market for collagen supplements.

Physical Signs of Collagen Loss

  1. Lines & Wrinkles: This is probably the first sign of collagen depletion. You will most likely notice etched lines under the eyes, around the mouth, or along the forehead.
  2. Sagging Skin: Collagen helps our skin resist the force of gravity. When collagen depletes, this support structure weakens, causing sagging around the mouth, neck, eyelids, and cheeks.
  3. Loss of Elasticity: Collagen and elastin are like sisters and need to stick together. When collagen depletes, so does elastin. This results in skin that looks flatter and doesn’t spring back if pinched.

What Damages Collagen?

  1. Refined Sugars: Excessive sugar intake leads to glycation, a process where sugar molecules attach to collagen, making the fibers stiff and unmanageable.
  2. Smoking: Smoking releases chemicals that attach to the skin, damaging collagen and elastin fibers. It also floods the skin with free radicals, damaging DNA and leading to lines, wrinkles, sagging, and dull-looking skin.
  3. Overexposure to UV: Too much sun exposure allows UV rays to penetrate the skin’s dermis, breaking down collagen and elastin fibers, causing premature aging and pigmentation issues.

How to Boost Collagen in the Body

  1. Diet:
    • Vitamin C: Foods rich in vitamin C, like citrus fruits, are excellent for boosting collagen.
    • Protein: Eating protein-rich foods like lean meat, fish, eggs, and legumes can enhance collagen synthesis.
    • Bone Broth: Bone broth contains collagen and can provide an added boost.
  2. Products: Using topical skincare products containing retinol, vitamin C, peptides, hyaluronic acid, and ceramides can boost collagen and protect the skin from damage and water loss.

In summary

Hopefully, you now understand how crucial collagen is for our body and skin. When it comes to aging, prevention is better than cure. If you are 30 years old or older, it’s a good idea to adjust your routine to incorporate natural collagen and elastin boosters. Even small changes can make a significant difference in just four weeks!