We all associate collagen with skin because it’s often used in skin creams and treatments, but the collagen benefits we get inside our body are far reaching.
Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies and is found in skin, muscles, bones, tendons, blood vessels and the digestive system. It is regarded as the glue that holds our bodies together.
When we are children, collagen is produced in abundance to support our growing bodies, but as we age, the natural production slows down and we start to notice the visible signs of ageing such as sagging skin and wrinkles, and increasingly stiff and sometimes painful joints.
We can get collagen from our food – bone broth is the best source of collagen from food. Collagen is also available in a daily supplement like the Potion London ‘The Collagen Boost’.
But why is it important for us to increase our collagen intake? Here we look at the collagen benefits that can be found around the body.
1 Improves skin, hair and nails
Not only is collagen essential for helping to increasing skin elasticity and reduce wrinkles, but it also helps to strengthen skin to reduce the appearance of cellulite and stretch marks.
Collagen is also the building blocks of hair and nails and is an essential nutrient if you want strong and healthy hair and nails (read more here).
2 Improves joint health
Collagen is a smooth structure that covers and holds our bones together, allowing them to glide and move without pain. When our collagen levels decline, our tendons and ligaments start moving with less ease, leading to stiffness and swollen joints. A recent study (link here) found that collagen can help to treat osteoarthritis and another found that athletes suffering from joint pain reduced their pain by taking collagen (link here).
3 Improves gut health
Leaky gut syndrome is a condition where poor gut health leads to the walls of the gut becoming compromised and allowing toxins to pass through into the blood stream. This can likely cause various problems from skin conditions to ‘brain fog’. Consuming more collagen helps form connective tissue and therefore “seals and heals” the protective lining of the gastrointestinal tract (read more here).
4 Helps to heal postnatal diastasis recti
Diastasis Recti is a condition that affects women after pregnancy. The abdominal muscle’s connective tissue stretches with the growing baby and weakens at the mid line where the muscles connect. After giving birth, in some women, the connective tissue doesn’t heal back together properly, and looks and feels ‘separated’. Core exercises help this problem, but collagen benefits the gut by helping to heal and repair the connective tissue to improve the condition (read further information here).
5 Protects Cardiovascular health
The amino acid proline, which is one of the amino acids found in collagen, helps the artery walls release fat build-up in the bloodstream, helping to shrink the fat in the arteries and minimise fat accumulation. Proline is also needed for tissue repair within the joints and arteries, and helps to control blood pressure. (read further information here ).