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Collagen is one of the most used words in the wellness world, just how avocado is used in all pictures by healthy food bloggers. You probably know that it is mostly used to give people a flawless and youthful complexion and its claimed properties include skin elasticity and getting rid of fine lines.
But now clean-eating influencers are adding to the list of perks from everything to a better gut health and healthy digestion, to soothing painful joints and improving performance at the gym. But will collagen actually make any difference for your health? We had a look.
What is collagen?
Collagen is a type of protein found in all the connective tissues of our body, which means that our muscles, bones, skin and hair are full of it. The role of collagen is to help in regenerating muscles, bones and joints when they are damaged, as well as giving you glowing skin and hair. Everyone gets collagen through their diet through vitamins such as vitamin A and vitamin C. Those that consume animal products also get collagen from meat, dairy and eggs.
During the ageing process that starts around our mid-twenties, our bodies produce less collagen and therefore are repairing themselves slower and harder. Therefore, we experience things like wrinkles, cellulite and skin that is losing its firmness in general, as well as recovering slower from a joint or muscle injury.
So do these supplements work?
Considering the trendiness of supplements and the new health craze that is promoted on social media, combining with our need of looking younger as long as possible, it’s no surprise that collagen is being promoted so much.
But research so far is inconclusive, so while scientists say that there is some correlation between these supplements being ingested and entering our bloodstream, there is no scientific proof that the supplements go further into our muscles or joints. Whilst there is no proof that taking collagen supplements aid in recovery, there are a few studies that show that it benefits the skin. But these studies are very limited as well.
What do we think?
Considering these supplements don’t come cheap, with most brands charging at least $50 dollars for a month’s supply, and the fact that the research is not saying much, we think you should pass. Instead focus on getting more essential vitamins and fats through your diet, as well as taking better care of your health in general.