Collagen powder can boost your morning smoothie in many ways. It has always been thought to assist in the health of skin, nails, and hair; collagen may be able to assist the body in improving other bodily tissues to grow healthy and strong.
Helps Your Joints
Taking collagen powder
as a daily supplement may improve pain that is caused by arthritis and other joint-related problems. Some studies have found evidence to show that collagen powder can improve some of the symptoms of osteoarthritis, including reduction of pain. Compared to a control group that didn’t take a collagen supplement, one study of 73 athletes who suffer from chronic joint pain found that pain they suffered both while active and while at rest had a “significant decrease” in pain.
It is theorized by scientists that collagen supplements may accumulate in the joints somehow, causing the body to be stimulated into producing new cartilage tissue. This could theoretically lead to decreased inflammation of joints, better joint function, and therefore decreased pain from joint disease.
May Improve Muscle Mass
Similar to how collagen helps to support skin, joints, and bone, it also makes up part of all muscle tissue. Studies were done in people who suffer from sarcopenia, or the premature or significant loss of muscle mass with age. The studies showed that a group of men who were regularly exercising to increase muscle, and who were taking a collagen supplement built new muscle mass more quickly than those who exercised without a collagen supplement.
May Help Prevent Bone Loss
Bones have a significant amount of collagen in their makeup, making up part of the matrix that makes up bone tissue. Similar to how collagen behaves in skin and joints as we age, we lose the collagen content in our bones with age, and production of it decreases in the aging human. This, in part, leads to weakened bones and can cause pathological fractures in the bones.
Several studies have been done to test the use of collagen supplements with people who suffer from osteoporosis or other problems related to decreased bone mass due to aging. Multiple studies have found a possible link to collagen supplementation and inhibited the breakdown of healthy bone in aging adults.
A study of all women, the gender that is most likely to be diagnosed with osteoporosis, showed that supplemental calcium and collagen together resulted in decreased levels of proteins associated with the breakdown of bone than in women who took calcium, alone. Another study that supplemented the diet with collagen alone found similar results. This is exciting for those who are at risk for osteoporosis, and the painful symptoms associated with it.
Boosts Skin Hydration, Elasticity, and Health
Collagen has long been linked to healthy skin. Because your body releases less collagen naturally, as you age, the idea of supplementing your diet with collagen is a natural one. There have been many studies done to see if there is a connection between taking collagen in the diet and improved skin health and appearance, and there has been evidence to show that there is a connection.
Multiple studies have linked collagen supplements with a reduction in skin wrinkles and dry skin. One study found a link between skin elasticity and collagen supplements, while another found both skin hydration and elasticity can be linked to oral collagen supplements. It is believed that taking oral collagen might cause the body to begin to make its own collagen more rapidly.
The body’s production of fibrillin and elastin, two other proteins that are similar in function to collagen may also be boosted by taking collagen.
May Strengthen Coronary Arteries
Although more studies are needed to prove that heart health can be definitely helped with a collagen supplement, some studies have shown that supplemental collagen may reduce the hardening of coronary arteries, a condition that leads to a heart attack. Additionally, a study also showed that individuals taking a collagen supplement had an increase in their serum levels of HDL, or “good” cholesterol, which also works to reduce the chance of heart attack.
May Strengthen Hair & Nails
Collagen has long been celebrated to make hair and nails strong and healthy. Taking collagen may also cause your hair and nails to grow faster.
Always contact your doctor before using any supplement, especially if you are taking medications or have chronic disease issues.