Author: Sonya Reynolds. B.A; Dip Nut. Nutritionist
What is collagen?
We usually think of Collagen for beauty, but this humble protein does so much more. The word collagen originates from a Greek word meaning ‘glue producing’ and that’s a good description of how collagen works in the body, it’s like a glue keeping the body together.
Collagen is the predominant protein in our connective tissue; connective tissue includes hair, skin and nails -which is why you usually hear about collagen for markers of beauty - but connective tissue also includes cartilage, tendons and ligaments. In fact, around 60% of the dry weight of your cartilage is made up of collagen.
Which foods naturally contain collagen?
There are foods which are naturally rich in Collagen such as bone broth, chicken thigh, pork skin, beef tendon and fish with skin.
Other foods contain nutrients (such as zinc and vitamin C) which help to synthesise collagen in our bodies; these include salmon, leafy green vegetables such as lettuce, broccoli and bok choy, citrus fruits and orange vegetables.
Although it’s great to eat foods which naturally contain collagen, it can be difficult to include these in our everyday diet. Another option is to take a supplement: https://www.naturesway.com.au/
Our collagen production declines as we age
As young as from our mid 20’s, our bodies naturally produce less collagen and unfortunately due to this decline there can be more wear and tear on our joints. Therefore, what are the options for someone who wants to stay fit or maintain intense exercise as they age, without experiencing pain? And what about those people who have increased stress and pressure on their joints from excessive weight?
A natural solution to manage this natural wear and tear from progressing is Hydrolysed Collagen.
Hydrolysed collagen is absorbed in the intestine which then has a stimulatory effect on the formation of collagen and other proteins such as proteoglycans which make up our joints and ligaments
Some studies show people who were experiencing activity-related joint pain, showed improvement of mobility over 6 weeks when they used collagen. People also reported less stiffness in their joints. Interestingly one of the key findings in the research is, those athletes that took collagen had reductions in pain perceptions compared to those that didn’t consume collagen.
In some people these results were noted in as little as 3 weeks. More pronounced improvements were also noted at 6 and 12 weeks. One 3-month study even demonstrated improved cartilage regeneration via MRI.
Who could benefit from collagen supplementation?
Those people who are living an active lifestyle and want to prevent damaging their joints
Those undertaking long runs or walks and frequent gym goers
Those people starting to notice their joints are a bit creaky
Speak to your health care Practitioner to see if Collagen is appropriate for you.