How Does Collagen Protein Work

Roles: What Does Collagen Do

Collagen Supplements | Vegan Collagen | Do they work? | Vegan Proteins

Collagen is secreted by various cells, but mainly by connective tissue cells.

It is found in the extracellular matrix. This is an intricate network of macromolecules that determines the physical properties of body tissues. A macromolecule is a molecule containing a large number of atoms.

In the dermis, or the middle layer of skin, collagen helps form a fibrous network of cells called fibroblasts, upon which new cells can grow. It also plays a role in replacing and restoring dead skin cells.

Some collagens act as protective coverings for delicate organs in the body, such as the kidneys.

With age, the body collagen. The structural integrity of the skin declines. Wrinkles form, and joint cartilage weakens.

Women experience a dramatic reduction in collagen synthesis after menopause.

By the age of 60 years, a considerable in collagen production is normal.

Is Collagen Protein Powder Good For You

The answer is yes. , a collagen-based protein, is a good source of collagen for your skin. Its also a great source for collagen in your hair, nails, and other body parts. The collagen that you get from collagen powder is also good in the skin, as it helps to keep your cells healthy and supple. And, its a natural source thats not processed. So, if youre looking for a healthy, natural, collagen supplement, you cant go wrong with collagen.

How Do Collagen Drinks Work

A daily dose of collagen to plump lines and stop sagging sounds a little too good to be true, so is there any evidence in the claims?

‘The collagen peptides in these drinks are reportedly digested into smaller molecules and then absorbed in our gut. They’ve been shown to appear one hour after ingestion in the bloodstream,’ says London-based consultant dermatologist, Dr Justine Kluk. ‘Investigations have demonstrated that these absorbed peptides can reach the skin and may be retained in the tissue for up to two weeks,’ she adds. So far, so promising.

Griggs adds: ‘Many of these drinks contain collagen which has been hydrolysed in order to break down the protein structure this means it can be more easily absorbed and the collagen peptides become more bioavailable,’ says Griggs.

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Collagen Is Rich In Rare Amino Acids

In particular, collagen protein is rich in three very specific amino acids: glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline. In fact, collagen protein is the ONLY source of hydroxyproline.

Together, these three amino acids account for 40 50% of the protein in collagenthats 10 20 times higher than other typical protein sources.

Why does that matter? Glad you asked.

These are the very same raw-material building blocks our bodies need to make our own collagen-containing connective tissues, such as our skin, cartilage, bones, intestinal lining, tendons, and more.

In simple terms, like builds like. When you consume collagen from the connective tissues of animals, you ramp up your bodys own production of this all-important building block, which is quite literally the cement that holds it all together.

Thats the first way collagen works in the body, but you want to know something even more amazing about collagen? Check this out

It May Help Relieve Joint Pain

Collagen Protein Gut Boost, 325 gm  globalhealthlab

Collagen is naturally found in bones as well as cartilage and muscles surrounding our joints, so it makes sense that taking collagen supplements may help with joint pain and age-related conditions such as osteoarthritis.

One study in particular gave patients with osteoarthritis 2g or collagen every day for 70 days, and found there was a significant reduction in pain and improvement in physical activities compared to the placebo group

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I Felt Full All Morning

Since I drank my peptides in the morning with my coffee , I found myself full until lunchtime. I tend to take a later lunch, around 2:30, so I typically have a snack sometime mid-morning to tide me over. However, I found I didn’t need my morning snack after I had collagen. It also helped to pair my collagen coffee with breakfast, especially if I ate something that wasn’t super high in protein such as avocado toast. The 9 grams of protein from the collagen kept me satisfied until my next meal.

While I didn’t weigh myself during the experiment, I could definitely see why people take collagen for weight loss. Forgoing my standard 200- to 300-calorie morning snack because I felt full definitely helped to decrease my daily calorie intakeespecially because I was replacing it with a 35-calorie powder. Taking collagen peptides long-term could theoretically mean collagen power may help with weight loss.

How Does Our Body Digest Collagen

Before beginning to understand how long it may take for collagen to work, its important to take a brief look into the science behind how we digest, absorb, and metabolize collagen.

Collagen like all proteins is composed of a link of amino acids. This link is called a peptide.

Once we consume protein, hydrochloric acid digestive enzymes specifically proteases from the pancreas break down the protein into amino acids and smaller peptide chains.

These peptides and amino acids are then absorbed into the small intestine where they enter the bloodstream.

When we consume collagen from animal products it is likely not as readily available for our body to use, since we have to do more work to break down this protein and digest it.

Collagen peptides found in supplemental form are more bioavailable and easier for the body to use since it is essentially a pre-digested form of collagen.

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Do Collagen Supplements Work Here’s What The Science Says

Collagen supplements have become a significant contender in the protein supplement market and are quickly rising to the top of the list regarding what supplements people are buying.

Despite the rise in popularity, there are many questions around precisely what collagen supplements are, what they do, and whether they work or not.

This article will dive into the science of collagen and review whether or not collagen supplements are effective. You can also find relevant information on supplements within the NASM course on supplements. Check out the other NASM nutrition courses as well.

How Does Collagen Work In The Body

How Do Collagen Supplements Work?
  • May 7, 2019

Believe it or not, collagen hasnt always been as popular as it is today. In fact, it has long been regardedif not completely discardedas the red-headed stepchild of protein sources by many in the health and fitness world. Oh, how the tides have turned! Whats even more interesting is that collagens biggest weakness may actually be its greatest strength. In this article, well reveal the fascinating ways collagen works in the body to unleash all its powerful benefits.

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My Nails Were Stronger

After about a week of taking the collagen, I noticed my nails were thicker and stronger and were growing faster. Usually, my nails break and tear off after they grow, but after drinking my collagen, they were growing nicely and faster than normal. How could I tell? I got a gel manicure, which is supposed to last up to two weeks, and my nails grew out after about eight or nine days. It left the bottoms of my nail beds exposed. Although it was annoying having to get my nails redone, it wasn’t a bad problem to have!

Are Collagen Supplements Safe

Collagen supplementsas well as the collagen being sprinkled into various food productsare usually derived from the skin, hide, tendons, bones, cartilage, or other connective tissues of cows, pigs, chicken, or fish. Collagen claimed to be vegan is made from genetically modified yeast and bacteria, but there is little evidence that it would have the same potential benefits as animal-derived collagen.

As is the case with all dietary supplements, the Food and Drug Administration doesnt verify that collagen supplements contain what they say they do or determine whether theyre contaminated with heavy metals, bacteria, or pesticides before theyre sold. Because heavy metals and toxins can collect in animal bones, its possible that supplements could be a source of compounds such as arsenic or lead.

For example, a recent analysis of 28 collagen supplements by the Clean Label Project found that 64 percent had detectable levels of arsenic, about one-third tested positive for lead, and 17 percent had cadmium. Although, for the most part, these levels were low, heavy metals accumulate in the body over time, which is one reason experts say theres no safe intake level for heavy metals.

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Butter Coffee And Collagen

A popular trend that has emerged in recent years is adding butter and/or MCT oil to your coffee, resulting in a beverage called butter coffee or bulletproof coffee.

Followers of this trend claim that it can suppress appetite, promote weight loss, and increase mental clarity.

While not much data exists to back these claims, adding butter to coffee may help people on a very low carb keto diet stay in ketosis, a state in which your body uses mostly fat for energy .

Butter coffee is also popular with intermittent fasting, a practice that involves abstaining from food for designated periods. Although technically, consuming coffee that contains fat breaks your fast .

Furthermore, some people add collagen protein to their butter coffee to reap some of the benefits that collagen may provide.

That said, adding collagen to butter coffee does not appear to provide benefits beyond those associated with adding it to regular coffee, though data in this area is lacking.


Generally, collagen protein can be safely added to hot coffee, as brewing temperatures are usually below the point at which collagen proteins break down. It can also be added to buttered or bulletproof coffee, though it may not provide additional benefits.

While its most common to consume collagen peptides with coffee, it can also be added to other hot or cold foods and beverages, including:

  • smoothies
  • mashed potatoes
  • jello

Safety And Side Effects

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To date, theres limited reliable information available on the safety and efficacy of collagen supplements.

The potential side effects of gelatin supplements include a lingering unpleasant taste and sensations of heaviness and heartburn.

Also, if youre allergic to the source of the supplement, you could have an allergic reaction.


There are no substantial reports of side effects. However, you could have an allergic reaction if youre allergic to the supplement source.

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Collagen Can Make You Feel Down In The Dumps

One of the worst effects of collagen supplementation is that it can mess with your mood.

Adding extra collagen protein to your regime could lead to a deficit in tryptophan. A decrease in tryptophan will cause your serotonin levels to lower which will bulldoze into possibly gaining feelings of nervousness, irritability, anxiety, and depression. This is especially important to note if you already suffer from a mood disorder.

Benefits Of Collagen Supplements

Two types of supplements are gaining popularity hydrolyzed collagen and gelatin. Gelatin is created when collagen is cooked.

These have already broken the large protein down into smaller peptides, which are more easily absorbed in the body.

There arent many studies on collagen supplements, but those that exist show promise for benefits in the following areas:

  • Muscle mass. A 2019 study in recreationally active men showed that a combination of collagen peptide supplements and strength training increased muscle mass and strength more than a placebo (

Some alternative medicine practitioners also advocate using collagen supplements to treat leaky gut syndrome.


According to studies, supplemental collagen may help improve skin texture and muscle mass, as well as reduce osteoarthritis pain.

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Can Popping A Pill Or Eating Foods With Collagen Improve Your Skin Hair Nails Or Joints

Smoother skin, shinier hair, stronger nails, healthier joints, and more lean muscle massthese are just a few of the benefits proponents claim collagen powders, pills, and foods can deliver.

Plenty of people are buying into the idea. Collagen is promoted as an anti-aging compound, as well as a beauty and performance enhancer, says Karen Formanski, an analyst with market research firm Mintel, making it appealing not just to middle-aged consumers but also to younger ones. According to projections by Nutrition Business Journal, collagen supplement sales in the U.S. will reach $298 million this yearup from $73 million in 2015.

Although collagen supplements have been around for quite a while, collagen has more recently popped up as an ingredient in foods. The category of functional foods and drinks with added collagen has really exploded in the past couple of years, Formanski says. We see it as an offshoot of the overall trend of foods and drinks with added protein. Energy bars, oatmeal, smoothies, coffee creamers, and popcorn are just a few of the foods that tout collagen on their labels.

But is eating more collagen really the quickest route to looking and feeling younger? Heres what we know.

Joint And Bone Health

Do Collagen Supplements Really Work? | Skincare Science

To date, there are more than 60 studies about HC efficacy in reducing collagen damage, osteoarthritis , and osteoporosis . These results, as well as a high level of tolerance and safety, can make taking HC appealing for long-term use in bone and joint degenerative diseases.

Recent findings include a study of 51 postmenopausal women with osteopenia that found that the addition of HCs to calcium and vitamin D supplements may enhance bone metabolism.

In another study of 250 subjects with osteoarthritis of the knee, participants were given 10 grams of HC daily for six months. At the completion of the study, there was a significant improvement in knee joint comfort, based on both visual analog and pain scale assessments. Subjects with the greatest joint deterioration benefited the most.

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Collagen & Bone Broth Supplements

First and foremost, thank you for writing in Alycia.

I appreciate you taking the time to send me that message, and this has been an article that I have been planning for quite some time.

In the recent past, I have seen plenty of folks unclear on this subject. This is a great place to start for todays discussion.

The short answer is that using collagen/bone broth supplements instead of a complete protein could lead to the Metabolism Reset Challenge not working for you.

If you did everything else, as per the guidelines, that might just be the only change you need.

Potential Downsides To Keep In Mind

And theres little evidence of adverse effects. Mild digestive symptoms and bad breath are the two most common downsides. Those with fish, shellfish, or egg allergies should check to make sure any supplements do not include those ingredients. Pregnant women should consult their physician before taking a collagen supplement.

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What Should You Look For When Purchasing

You want a simple product with minimal added ingredients, says St. Pierre. Check the type of collagen the product has, too. Type 1 and 3 collagens are generally used to support bones and skin health. Type 2 is used to support joints. The amount per serving matters, too. Studies have shown positive benefits with 10 to 15 g doses sometimes even just 5 g. Check if the supplement contains vitamin C, too. If it doesnt, you can pair your peptides with an outside source to maximize benefits, McNear says.

Lastly, look for a confirmation of third-party testing it ensures youre truly getting whats listed on the label, she says.

What Do The Studies Say

Amy Myers MD Collagen Protein Reviews

There is some evidence to back these claims up. For example, in a study in the Journal of Medical Nutrition and Nutraceuticals, several women drank a mixture containing various vitamins, minerals, hydrolyzed collagen, and hyaluronic acid.

The study showed that compared with those in the control group, the women who drank this mixture reduced the depth of their wrinkles significantly. The participants skin hydration and elasticity also improved significantly.

Another similar study in the journal Skin Pharmacology and Physiology looked at the effects of collagen supplements on womens skin.

In this study, the women took either a collagen supplement or placebo for 8 weeks. After those 8 weeks, the women who took the supplement had higher elasticity and moisture levels.

There are also claims that collagen may help prevent skin conditions such as acne. However, such claims do not yet have scientific evidence to support them.

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Collagen May Buoy Your Heart Health

Stirring collagen into your coffee may be good for your ticker, too. A small uncontrolled open label study published in the Journal of Atherosclerosis and Thrombosis in May 2017 looked at 32 participants who took a collagen tripeptide twice a day. After six months, markers of atherosclerosis , including measures of cholesterol and arterial stiffness, had improved. Researchers think that the collagen may help fortify blood vessel walls to reduce the risk of artery disease.

Should I Take A Collagen Supplement

Celebrities are promoting it, the internet is pushing it and your friends may even be raving about how taking collagen has helped their skin look younger and their hair look healthier.

But what is collagen, and can it really reverse the effects of aging and improve your health? We talked to wellness dietitian Lindsey Wohlford to get some answers.

What is collagen, and what are collagen supplements?

Collagen is group of proteins. They make up about one-third of the protein in your body and provide the structure for tissues like cartilage, skin and tendons.

The body produces collagen from the amino acids that you take in through food. However, this ability starts to decline after age 20.

Collagen cannot be absorbed unless its broken down into smaller amino acids. So, collagen supplements are not actually collagen, but rather components of collagen that are already broken down into absorbable form.

Collagen supplements come in pill or powder form. The powder form will not turn into a gel when it hits liquid, so it can be mixed with food or beverages.

Is collagen good for you?

Taking collagen supplements probably wont hurt you, but it may not help you either.

What foods have collagen, and will eating them provide the benefits that supplements promise?

The key is eating a balanced diet that gives you a variety of amino acids to meet the bodys need. Its always best to get your nutrients through a healthy, balanced diet.

What can you do to boost your collagen?

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