In 2020, collagen supplements and products have been all the craze. If you found this article, you might be asking yourself “what is collagen and what’s with all the hype?” For starters, collagen is actually one of the most plentiful proteins found in the human body. It is often times considered to be one of the building blocks for bones, skin, muscle, tendons and ligaments.
Most recently, collagen has been trending more than ever due to its large variety of benefits. You may notice that there are consumable collagen products as well as topicals, but for the purpose of this article, we’ve gathered the top benefits that you may get from taking a collagen protein powder, which are most commonly mixed in a wide variety of beverages.
1. Keeps Skin Youthful
Collagen could be very beneficial to your skin and is why you can often times find it in beauty products. The way it works is that collagen proteins work with other proteins called Elastins to strengthen skin and help it return to its initial form when stretched. The problem is, as people age the production of natural collagen within the body begins to slow. “After the age of 25, we break down more collagen than we make so that’s why we start to see fine lines and wrinkles,” says Debra Jaliman, MD, author of “Skin Rules: Trade Secrets from a Top New York Dermatologist.”
The good news? Research has shown that taking hydrolyzed collagen (collagen peptides) in the form of a supplement can help restore your collagen levels and improve your skins function. 
2. Helps Relieve Joint Pain
Although type II collagen is naturally found in joints, an active lifestyle and normal aging makes joints prone to wear and tear. Numerous studies have shown promise on ingestible collagen’s ability to help with joint pain and relieving symptoms of osteoarthritis. In one study, adults took 2 grams of collagen daily for 70 days. Those who took collagen had a significant reduction in joint pain and were better able to engage in physical activity than those who did not take it. 
3. Could Help Prevent Bone Loss
Human bones are made primarily of collagen. Collagen is what helps keep them structured and strong. Similar to the way your natural collagen production in your body deteriorates as we age, so do our bones. This decrease in bone mass over the years that we age could result in conditions such as osteoporosis. Not to worry though, a recent study showed that a control group that took 5 grams of collagen daily with a calcium supplement had a 7% increase in Bone Mineral Density (BMD) over those who only took the calcium supplement.  These studies are very promising in collagens affects on bone health, but most studies warn that many more studies need to be done before we know for sure the impact of collagen on bone health.
4. Could Promote Good Heart Health
Collagen provides structure for your arteries, which carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body. Without enough collagen arteries could be weakened or become fragile. It is because of this that researchers have theories on how collagen consumption could help prevent heart related illness. Among recent studies on the subject, 31 healthy adults who consumed 16 grams of collagen daily for 6 months, showed on average a 6% increase in HDL “good” cholesterol in their blood. 
5. Helps Keep Hair Healthy
One of the benefits of collagen that we talked about earlier, helping skin elasticity, works similarly when it comes to hair health as well. Studies have found that type 1 collagen is able to fight against free radicles on the scalp that cause hair loss and hair thinning. By supplying the skin around these hair follicles with collagen antioxidants, the rate of hair loss slowed down and seemed to be rejuvenated. 
With the recent craze in collagen supplements, we have seen some positive effects on the body that have been backed by studies, with few known side effects or negative results. It’s also worth noting that many other benefits of collagen have been reported, but few have been studied or determined to be factual.
Although you can obtain collagen from some foods, it’s really unknown at this point whether or not consuming collagen directly from foods provides the same benefits as a collagen supplement. Because collagen supplements are safe and reasonably affordable, we believe they are definitely worth giving a try for the potential benefits.
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