Health blogger and Teaologists founder
“Zest is the secret of all beauty.
There is no beauty that is attractive without zest.”
The best nutrition comes from nature, no matter what marketing departments attempt to tell us. One key area of nutrition is protein; specifically how we can consume and use proteins effectively to improve our overall health.
One particular form of protein is collagen. Collagen is a natural, easily digestible and highly bioactive form of protein produced from bovine, porcine, chicken or marine cells. It is a highly effective form of protein and specially used to improve the strength of bones and health and appearance of hair, teeth, nails and skin.
There’s a number of technical words associated with collagen, the definitions of which are:
Here’s the technical bit; collagen peptides are comprised of three different polypeptide chains which are wrapped around one another to build triple-helical macromolecules - a one-of-a-kind amino acid sequence.
This sequence is extremely important for the collagen to assemble the fibrils that would go on to form fibres and provide extreme structural integrity for your conjunctive tissues.
What this means to you, is that collagen peptides are an essential protein ingredient for the body to maintain joint, teeth and hair and skin wellness.
Perhaps you’ve come across collagen supplements or maybe a form of gelatin to help improve your skin health, condition your hair or give your nails a natural lustre. There are different types of collagen such as Type 1, Type 2 and Type 3. These contain different proteins, all of which have a role to play in the functioning of the body and are explained as follows:
Type I collagen
As with all other collagens, type 1 collagen forms a triple helix which is made up of three strands. Each strand is about 300 nanometers long and contains 1050 amino acids. Hydrogen exists between the amino acids and the strands, holding them together and increasing the strength of the fibre massively.
Type I collagen is extremely strong and is the primary component of tendons. It also helps reinforce bones.
Type II collagen
This type of collagen is the most important protein present in cartilage. Cartilage is the strong connective tissue which exists in the ears, nose, and several joints in the body. They give cartilage strength and resilience.
Type II fibrils are usually smaller in size than their type I counterparts. Type II collagen is produced by the non-cellular matrix of cartilage.
Type III collagen
Whilst it’s not as strong as type I collagen, more than 90% of the body is made up of Type I and III collagen. These contain proteins like proline, hydroxyproline, alanine and glycine. Collagen type III is commonly found in arterial walls, intestines and of course, the skin. It also forms triple helices which have alot of strength as well. This collagen type is notable for its ability to seal up damaged skin. The body produces this type of collagen faster than any other type of collagen. That’s why, when a wound has time to heal, the body replaces type III collagen with type I, which then goes on to form scar tissue.
The body’s collagen production is at its peak in the mid 20’s but soon after that, it starts to deplete. As a result, our skin becomes less firm, thinner, develop wrinkles, deep creases and sagginess.
To the modern consumer, it’s no secret that healthy collagen levels can give youthful skin. And the best way to maintain healthy collagen levels is to protect the collagen that already exists in the body. This can be done by avoiding sun exposure and consuming collagen in any of the aforementioned forms. Marketed as an anti-ageing product, collagen formulas have been getting a lot of attention in the beauty industry. Women in Japan have been drinking liquid collagen for quite a while to get firm, smooth, youthful skin. But European and Americans have recently become aware of the benefits of collagen.
Collagen supplements and beauty products come in forms like powder, liquid, tablets, capsules, soft chewables etc. The supplements are typically made of animal extract, derived from chicken, cow, pig or fish. Fish extract collagen is considered to be the best because apparently, the body can absorb it better, due to its minimal molecular weight.
The amount of time it takes for someone to actually see the benefits of collagen supplements may vary. For most people, results start to show within a few weeks of consumption, whilst for some, it may take months.
Bear in mind that not all collagen supplements are created equal. If your collagen supplement is not properly absorbed by your body, it won’t yield any results.
Collagen is a naturally-occurring, skin-friendly protein that is used by hundreds of people to combat the signs of ageing. Certain cells in the body such as fibroblasts produce collagen proteins in the form of procollagen. When the procollagen is secreted by the cell, it creates active collagen, which binds together to form fibrils.
Collagen is a complex molecule, which the human body cannot really absorb in its natural state. It’s basically too large to be absorbed into the skin from lotions etc. and because of the same reason, even the stomach can’t really break it down easily. That’s why it is always being modified by cosmetics and health supplement brands to make it more absorbable, which leads to the various different forms of supplements and cosmetic products you may have seen on the market.With that said, let’s move on to you. What do you think about collagen? Have you ever taken it? We’d love to hear it from you.
Comments will be approved before showing up.