The most abundant protein in your body, as well as being the major component of your connective tissues, collagen is vitally important in maintaining the health of your skin, hair and nails.
Basically, collagen is really important in a whole host of ways, from providing your skin with structure to strengthening your bones and keeping your hair healthy.
So, what are the benefits of a collagen supplement when you mix it with a healthy lifestyle?
Improve skin health
Taking collagen supplements may be helpful in slowing down the signs of ageing.
Collagen makes up 80% of your skin, playing a key role in your skin’s elasticity and hydration. Of course, as you get older your skin loses its elasticity as your body produces less collagen, leading to dry skin and wrinkles.
Some people have even reported that collagen supplements are helpful with skin conditions such as acne, although as yet there are no scientific studies to confirm or deny this.
Promote healthy hair and nails
Since hair and nails grow out of your skin, the potential effect of collagen counteracting ageing may contribute to better hair growth and decreased thinning and breakage in your nails.
Collagen also has antioxidant properties, meaning it can protect the body from environmental factors such as air pollution and the effects of lifestyle choices such as smoking and alcohol consumption.
On top of this, some studies suggest it may fight damage, and even prevent premature greying or slow down age-related greying!
Promote a healthy heart
Without enough collagen, your arteries may become weak which could lead to heart conditions such as atherosclerosis, a disease which causes a build up of plaque in your arteries.
Over time this can cause them to become weak and fragile and has the potential to cause a heart attack or stroke.
Pairing supplements with a healthy cardio workout could help reduce risk factors associated with developing heart conditions.
Help relieve joint pain
Like promoting a healthy heart and arteries, collagen can also help in a similar way with your joints.
It helps maintain your cartilage, protecting your joints from strain and making sure they’re strong and healthy to reduce the risk of sustaining injury.
Research has also suggested that collagen supplements can help reduce inflammation and promote pain relief after a heavy workout.
Prevent collagen loss
This may seem like an obvious one, but as previously mentioned, over time your body loses collagen naturally, with the way you live your life having a marked effect on the rate at which it declines.
For example, if you’re a smoker, many chemicals in tobacco damage both collagen and elastin - which is also found in the skin. Nicotine also narrows the blood vessels and can reduce the delivery of oxygen to the skin.
If you’re an avid travel enthusiast or a sun bed lover, sunlight and ultra-violet rays cause collagen to break down more rapidly, meaning the skin can rebuild ‘incorrectly’ causing wrinkles to form earlier than expected.
Adding collagen supplements to your diet needs a little dedication but is super easy to transition into your life.
You can add it to your porridge in the morning or even mix it into your daily shake.
Basically, if you’re wanting your body to stay at its peak, collagen is the supplement for you!