Collagen accounts for about 30 percent of the body’s total protein and is especially found in connective tissue. Collagen is the main structural component of the skin with approximately 80 percent of the skins dry weight being collagen. Collagen proteins are rich in hydroproline and have an unusually high content of glycine and proline. In some cases we will prescribe the individual amino acids where suitable or collagen itself. If you are taking protein with the intent of supporting and strengthening bone, tendons, cartilage and skin then collagen is a really good choice.
When you purchase collagen, it is worth knowing more about the breakdown of the one you have chosen. If a fish collagen, make sure it is ethically sourced, heavy metal free and absorbable. If bovine based check it is grass fed cattle sourced collagen. Make sure animals are organic and not fed soy or antibiotics. Talk to one of our practitioners so they can suggest the right one for you and if it is suitable for you. Every supplement needs to be well tolerated and effective. Every individual has different needs. We have three different brands of bovine collagen available at the clinic and two vegan based collagen supplements to suit individual requirements.
The benefits of collagen are vast, it has been reported that collagen supplementation improves muscle strength, bone repair, heart protection, joint pain and integrity, faster metabolism, gut lining damage, autoimmune conditions and aided in menopausal related obesity. Sadly from our early 20’s onwards our collagen declines. By the time we are 40 years old we are producing 25 percent less collagen.
Collagen is often thought of for skin, hair, nails but another exciting thing for me is how it works to repair the gut lining. Collagen and gelatin (cooked version of collagen) are the basic building blocks for your intestinal wall. The microscopic villi in the intestines are built up of collagen. By helping the gut lining you can help intolerances and autoimmune conditions like diabetes, hashimotos, arthritis etc.
Research has shown that Fortibone demonstrates the potential to improve both essential components of bone – the mineral and organic bone content. This helped demonstrate a reduction in fracture rate. In animal studies it showed reduced fracture rate, accelerated fracture healing and improved bone turnover, (even if ovaries are removed ), and good bone development during times of growth.
Fortigel collagen peptide has been shown to improve collagen production in joints, resulting in improved cartilage structure, reduced osteoarthritis symptoms, improved joint function, reduced post exercise joint pain in young athletes and to improve ankle stability. Most athletic injuries occur at the tendon site as the tendon is the weakest link in the joint structure. The tendon is comprised of 60-70percent collagen. Therefore, it makes perfect sense that a collagen supplement has the potential to help improve tendon strength and elasticity.
The two things that Verisol helps the most with is skin and the lining of the gut. This is a bovine based collagen. The verisol collagen peptide blend has been shown to up regulate synthesis of collagen, elastin and glucosaminoglycans in the dermal layer of the facial skin. This results in less wrinkles, improved skin elasticity and hydration. It has also been seen to help cellulite, helping in dermal thickness and elasticity not to mention helping reduce age related skin thinning. Verisol helps with inflammation not only within the skin abut also within the lining of the gut like in colitis.
The results of collagen are fantastic and yet it is not the right remedy for some people and other people being vegan choose not to use bovine products. Here at the clinic we have Vegan alternatives to bovine based collagen. They are still based on amino acids proline, glycine and lysine.
I am more of a fan of making your own bone broth or fish bone broth. This way you can tell you have grass fed meat or mercury low fish. When it is cooked the collagen leeches out of the bone. one way of telling is the day after it is made it can become jelly like in the fridge and this is a good sign there is collagen in it.
If you feel you could benefit from collagen supplementation please discuss this with your naturopath practitioner.