Find Out About What Collagen ACTUALLY Does For Your Skin!
If you have ever researched anything in the health and wellness industry then you have heard of collagen supplements and at least one of its numerous health benefits. From skin aging, to joint pain or even gut health, there are so many reasons for collagen supplementation.
There is so much to know about collagen! So much so that it can be very overwhelming. We’re here to help you with your research. We want to make it easy for you to decide if taking collagen is right for you.
Today, we want to focus on what collagen is and even more specifically, what does collagen do for your skin?
What is Collagen and What is its Role in Our Body?
Collagen is a necessary protein that is found in our connective tissues, skin, hair, nails, muscles, organs, tendons and joints. It is responsible for skin elasticity and plays a vital role in skin aging. Collagen also helps to keep our joints healthy by providing lubrication and shock absorption.
Our bodies naturally produce collagen. This process is actually called collagen synthesis or collagen production. As we age, our bodies produce less collagen, which not only leads to wrinkles and sagging skin but low collagen levels contribute to joint pains and stiffness and even such health concerns as digestive and cardiovascular issues.
By incorporating collagen-rich foods into your diet and taking collagen supplements, you can help to keep your skin looking young while providing necessary nutrients to combat age related health concerns.
What Are the Different Types Of Collagen?
There are four main types of collagen, each with its own unique set of properties. Type I collagen is the most common type of collagen in the human body. It is made up of long, thin fibers that provide strength and flexibility to tissues such as skin, tendons, and ligaments. Type I is also responsible for wound healing.
Type II collagen is found in cartilage and other connective tissues. It is composed of short, curved fibers that give these tissues their elasticity. Additionally, type II collagen helps to protect joints from wear and tear.
Type III collagen is found in the walls of hollow organs such as the intestine. It is made up of short, spiral-shaped fibers that give these organs their structure and helps them to resist stretching. Type III collagen plays a role in wound healing.
Type IV collagen is found in the basement membranes of cells. It consists of flat sheets of proteins that help to hold cells together and allow them to communicate with each other. Type IV collagen helps filter harmful substances from the body.
Together, these four types of collagen play an essential role in maintaining the health of the human body.
Collagen and Your Skin
When it comes to skin care, collagen is one of the most buzzed-about ingredients. But what does collagen actually do for your skin? Collagen is a protein that occurs naturally in the skin, providing structure and support.
It also helps to keep skin firm and elastic, preventing wrinkles and sagging. As we mature, collagen production declines leading to skin that is less smooth and youthful-looking and you may even find that your complexion has become dull.
Collagen helps to keep skin looking plump and youthful. When taken as a supplement, whether as an oral collagen supplement or a topical collagen supplement in the form of a cream or serum, collagen peptides help to increase skin elasticity and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
What are collagen peptides? Collagen peptides are the small fragments of collagen that make up collagen supplements. They are easily absorbed by the body and not only help to replenish collagen levels but they are also known to stimulate natural collagen production. This means healthier skin.
Reasons For Collagen Loss
The decline in collagen production happens to everyone but there are other reasons for collagen loss. Such reasons could result in an even greater decline, or simply mean that your levels begin to drop at an earlier age than another person. Let’s explore some of these other factors that impact collagen loss.
You are what you eat is a very common saying. A poor diet can lead to collagen loss by preventing the body from getting the nutrients it needs to produce collagen.
A diet high in sugar can cause inflammation, which also damages collagen. To keep your skin looking its best, it is important to eat a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, and lean protein. These nutrients will help your body to produce collagen and keep your skin looking young and healthy.
Poor Lifestyle Habits
What exactly are poor lifestyle habits? Can they really impact collagen loss and as a result affect my skin? Simply put, poor lifestyle habits are things that you do that are not good for your health. These can be anything from smoking cigarettes to not getting enough sleep.
Poor lifestyle habits can damage collagen and lead to skin aging at a much earlier age than someone who has healthier lifestyle habits.
Many smokers are aware of the dangers of smoking, but they may not be aware of the impact that it has on their skin. In addition to causing wrinkles and premature aging, smoking damages collagen, affecting its elasticity and strength.
Collagen is essential for healthy skin, and when it is damaged, the skin becomes weak and less able to resist damage. The smoke from cigarettes contains a number of harmful chemicals, including free radicals that cause oxidative stress.
This damage leads to the breakdown of collagen, which causes wrinkles, sagging skin, and an overall loss of elasticity. Smokers are also more likely to develop skin cancer.
The good news is that it is never too late to quit smoking and reverse the damage that has been done. With time and care, it is possible to restore collagen levels and achieve healthier, younger-looking skin.
Stress is a common occurrence in today’s fast-paced world. While a certain amount of stress is okay, chronic stress can lead to a number of health problems, including collagen loss.
Chronic stress can accelerate the decline of collagen levels. When the body is under stress, it produces the hormone cortisol, which breaks down collagen.
Stress is also known to cause inflammation, which further damages collagen fibers. As a result, chronic stress can cause wrinkles and other signs of aging. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to reduce stress and promote collagen production.
Exercise, relaxation techniques, and a healthy diet can all help to keep stress levels under control. These along with adding a collagen supplement to your regime will give your skin the best defense for aging well.
Lack of Sleep
Lack of sleep can lead to collagen loss and this can have a negative effect on your skin. During sleep, the body produces collagen. When you don’t get enough sleep, your body actually breaks down collagen faster than it can be replaced.
Collagen is a regenerative protein. The body does its most healing while we sleep. Lack of sleep actually disrupts the body’s natural ability to repair damage to the skin.
You know by now that collagen loss leads to wrinkles, fine lines, and a loss of skin elasticity. Are you aware that sleep deprivation can cause dryness, redness, and puffiness in your skin.
Make sure to get plenty of restful sleep every night, use a moisturizer or serum that contains hyaluronic acid to help boost collagen production, and eat a healthy diet that includes foods rich in antioxidants like berries, tomatoes, and leafy greens. Note: you can still take an oral collagen supplement while using a topical collagen cream.
Poor Sun Protection
How does poor sun protection cause collagen loss? Ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun can damage the collagen fibers in our skin, causing them to break down.
This process is called photoaging, and it’s one of the main reasons why it’s so important to wear sunscreen and stay out of the sun (especially during peak hours). Here are some tips to help you protect your collagen levels:
- Wear sunscreen every day, even if you’re just going for a walk or running errands.
- Apply sunscreen generously and reapply every few hours, especially if you’re swimming or sweating.
- Wear protective clothing like hats, long-sleeved shirts, and long pants.
Avoid being in the sun during peak hours (10am-4pm).
By following these tips, you can help protect your skin from collagen loss.
Ways to Boost Collagen Production Naturally
You will be pleased to know that there are ways to boost collagen production naturally. One of the best ways is to eat a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables. These foods contain vitamins and antioxidants that can help promote collagen production.
Getting enough vitamin C is important for collagen synthesis. Vitamin C can be found in citrus fruits, bell peppers, and leafy green vegetables. Other nutrients that are important for collagen production include copper, zinc, and proline. You can find these nutrients in foods like oysters, dark chocolate, sweet potatoes, and bone broth.
You can also support collagen production with topically applied products like retinol cream and vitamin C serum.
Exercise is also beneficial, as it helps increase blood flow and encourages the body to produce collagen.
Good lifestyle habits like enough sleep and protecting yourself properly from sun exposure also are part of natural ways to encourage collagen production.
Foods That Help Increase Collagen
We have talked about making sure you eat a healthy diet with lots of vegetables and fruits but there are some other foods that are considered to be collagen rich foods that can also be a part of your daily collagen intake which in turn can actually stimulate collagen production and affect your skin.
Foods to eat that can help to increase your collagen:
- bone broth
- dark leafy greens
- citrus fruits
- red bell peppers
When to Consider Collagen Supplements
Ideally, you should start taking collagen supplements before you see any signs of aging in your skin. That way, you can help prevent the formation of wrinkles and other age-related concerns.
Studies show that collagen synthesis begins naturally declining between our 20’s and 30’s depending on each individual’s overall health, lifestyle and even environmental stressors.
It is never too late to begin collagen supplementation but beginning in your early adult years or at the first signs of skin aging or other age related health issues such as joint pain or stiffness is definitely the time to consider it.
Types of Collagen Supplements
When it comes to collagen supplements, there are a few different types to choose from. The most popular type is collagen peptides, which are derived from animal sources like beef or chicken.
Peptides are small chains of amino acids that are easily absorbed by the body, making them ideal for boosting collagen levels.
Another option is marine collagen, which is sourced from fish skin or scales. Marine collagen has a slightly different amino acid profile than other types of collagen, but it is also very bioavailable.
Finally, there is plant-based collagen, which is usually made from either rice or soy. Plant-based collagen is a good option for vegetarians and vegans who want to improve their collagen intake.
Oral collagen supplements come in 3 forms: powdered, liquid and capsule. The best one for you is the form that best suits your lifestyle and is the most convenient for you to take. Consistency is key when adding supplements to your wellness routine.
No matter which type or form you choose, taking a collagen supplement can help to improve your skin health, reducing the signs of skin aging and preventing other age related issues.
Final Thoughts On Collagen and Your Skin
After reading our post we are sure you have discovered lots about what collagen actually does for your skin and why it is so important to keep your collagen levels up. Preventing skin aging and other various aging concerns is a huge part of your overall health.