The word collagen is derived from the Greek world “kolla’, meaning glue; it is one of the most common proteins in our body and it is the substance that literally holds us together. Collagen is found in our bones, teeth, muscles, skin and connective tissues and is also present in hair and nails. Collagen is also required by our body's to help replace and restore dead cells and to help keep your skin firm and elastic. Unfortunately as we age collagen production declines, which is why we see the formation of wrinkles, sagging skin and feel aches, pains and have creaky joints as our connective tissues weaken.
Other lifestyle habits can further reduce the levels of collagen in our body. Eating a high sugar diet causes a process where sugar in the blood attaches to proteins to form new molecules called Advanced Glycation End products (AGEs). These AGEs cause damage and make the collagen you are naturally producing to be much weaker and less effective. Exposure to sunlight and UVA also causes collagen to break down faster and increases abnormal sagging and premature ageing in the skin. Smoking damages collagen production and nicotine reduces the size of blood vessels in the skin, which in turn reduces the ability of the body to deliver good nutrients like essential amino acids and oxygen to keep skin in optimum health.
Collagen is not found in plants, and is only found in mammals, birds and fish species. There are different types of collagen – the most common ones being bovine, which is sourced from cows or porcine from pigs. These types of collagen are easier to extract for pharmaceutical and medicinal uses and are very commonly used in the cosmetics we buy. However, cosmetic products that claim to increase collagen levels via absorption through the skin in the form of creams and liquids are unlikely to deliver on this promise as collagen molecules are too large to be absorbed through the skin.
The other form is marine collagen, which is extracted from cold water fish. This form of collagen is absorbed more efficiently into the body than other types of mammal collagen, offering a more potent and direct source of this special protein to assist your body. In particular this benefits the skin as it is more easily absorbed.
You can also increase your collagen levels via your food, in the form of bone broths, which our ancestors ate regularly – boiling the parts of the animals that we regularly reject today. Bones are full of natural collagen that is extracted as you heat the broth liquid. Other animal products like eggs, poultry, fish, cheese and milk also assist your body to manufacture collagen. There are other factors to keep in mind to support the formation and absorption of collagen. You need to ensure your diet is also rich in vitamin C, copper (shellfish, meat, nuts and seeds) and foods high in anthocyanidins like blueberries, cherries and blackcurrants, plus plenty of vitamin A.
Boosting your collagen intake may support an improvement in the condition of your skin, your hair, your nails and even your teeth. As your skin improves it may also reduce the visible signs of cellulite as your skin becomes plumper and firmer. You may also notice less creaking and easier movement in any stiff joints. An increase in collagen also improves the amount of glycine (found in collagen), which can help to maintain your energy levels throughout the day.
BioBalance Collagen Capsules contain pure collagen sourced directly from sustainably harvested marine fisheries in the pristine coastal waters of New Zealand. The cold sea fish are pollution and disease free – and the capsules are odourless and tasteless. Buy them now from our secure online shop.
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