There’s been a lot of talk about collagen for hair, skin, nails and more. Is it a supplement that can provided better health?
What is collagen?
Collagen is a hard, insoluble, and fibrous protein and it is abundant in the human body. Collagens are structures that give skin strength and elasticity. We know that collagen production declines with age and exposure to factors such as smoking and UV light. One of the downsides of aging is less collagen and hence older people have less strength and elasticity in their skin. This is also why wrinkles appear and skin starts to sag.
So what is hydrolyzed collagen and why the hype?
Hydrolyzed collagen is collagen that’s in a different format so it is more easily absorbed by the body. Most powdered collagen supplements have been hydrolyzed. The sources of hydrolyzed collagen is sourced from the hides and connective tissues of cows. Some other sources can come from fish. It is not vegan and it should not be taken if you have allergies to beef and/or fish.
it appears that multiple studies have found hydrolyzed collagen is helpful in treating aging skin and skin wounds. However, most of the studies have very small sample sizes and/or did not include double blind studies. Most people reporting seeing overall better skin conditions especially those that were of increased age. All the studies indicated that there were not significant side effects.
As with all supplements, it is important to discuss the implications with your physician so you can adequately assess risk/benefit for you, personally.
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