Collagen is the lavish protein in our body. It structures bones, cartilage, joints, nails, hair, and skin. Unfortunately, the body produces less collagen as we age, leading to various signs of ageing, such as brittle nails, joint pain, and wrinkles.
The good news is that there are various approaches available that can help restore or boost collagen. One notable option is collagen supplements. They usually contain many collagen forms, peptides, amino acids, and additional nutrients.
This blog post will explore some potential health benefits of collagen supplements.
As the collagen levels in the body decline with age, the risk of joint cartilage deterioration increases, which can lead to joint swelling, pain, and loss of motion. It’s also linked to bone conditions such as osteoporosis.
Some evidence suggests that taking high-quality collagen powder for overall well-being can help strengthen bone health.
The study on post-menopausal women with low bone mineral density (BMD) provides compelling evidence of collagen supplementation’s potential benefits in bone health.
In that 12-month study, participants who took a 5-gram collagen supplement alongside vitamin D and calcium experienced a notable reduction in BMD compared to those who didn’t include collagen.
Similarly, a 2018 study focusing solely on collagen supplementation revealed a 7% increase in BMD among post-menopausal women with low BMD. This finding suggests that collagen alone may contribute to improving bone density.
Furthermore, a meta-analysis in 2019 emphasised the efficiency of collagen supplements in alleviating osteoporosis symptoms such as stiffness and pain, further supporting the positive influence of collagen on bone health.
Although these studies have generated promising results, more extensive and diverse studies are required to comprehensively assess collagen’s impact on bone health across various populations. Still, these studies are a significant stepping stone in understanding collagen’s potential benefits in supporting bone health.
Inadequate collagen in the body means sagging and dry skin. Interestingly, studies have shown that taking collagen supplements can visibly reduce the effects of ageing, boosting skin firmness and hydration.
Collagen is a crucial component of the hair follicle structure, contributing to its strength and resilience. Again, collagen production naturally decreases as we age. It can lead to thinner, more fragile hair that no one wants.
Taking collagen supplements can help promote healthy hair. Incorporating these supplements into your routine gives your body the building blocks for robust hair growth.
The amino acids in collagen, such as proline, glycine, and arginine, are vital for forming keratin, the protein that makes up the bulk of our hair strands. Additionally, collagen peptides stimulate cellular turnover in hair follicles, promoting a rejuvenated and revitalised growth phase.
That means collagen supplements can also improve the overall quality of your hair, making it shinier, more manageable, and less prone to breakage. It’s worth noting that while collagen supplements can be a beneficial advantage to your hair care routine, it’s crucial to maintain a balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle for optimal results.
When the collagen levels in the body start to drop, you are prone to lose muscle mass and possibly develop an age-related muscle loss condition called sarcopenia. Combining collagen supplements with exercise is a promising approach to counteract this decline.
Researchers suggest that collagen may support muscle proteins like creatine, which play a role in stimulating muscle growth post-exercise. It could potentially benefit individuals of all ages looking to improve muscle mass.
In a 12-week study involving 27 older men experiencing age-related muscle mass loss, those who took a daily dose of 15 grams of collagen and engaged in exercise routines gained more muscle mass and strength than those who didn’t receive collagen supplementation.
Similarly, a study with 57 young men who consumed 15 grams of collagen daily and participated in resistance training three times a week revealed improved composition. However, the strength outcomes between the placebo and collagen groups were similar.
Although these findings are encouraging, further research is required to establish the broad efficacy of collagen in boosting muscle mass. Additionally, long-term effects are yet to be fully understood.
Collagen supplementation remains a heated debate among experts and scholars. While some research suggests promising benefits in areas like skin health, joint function, and muscle mass, it’s crucial to approach this with a balanced perspective. Also, not all collagen supplements are considered equally effective. So, do your due diligence in selecting a reputable and well-reviewed product.