What is Collagen Nutrition? A Skeptic's Guide

Lately, we've been seeing a lot of collagen products, including collagen powder, collagen water, collagen tablets, collagen gummies, and many more.  Collagen peptides seem to be all the rage, and people are swearing by the results.

But, the skeptics say, "How could eating collagen actually work for your skin?"

What is Collagen Nutrition?

Collagen nutrition is not a hoax. It's the understanding of how your body uses dietary collagen protein, where it comes from, what types of collagen nutrition exists, and how it affects the human body. Collagen, like any food, can provide nourishment for the body. 

Here are the collagen basics:

collagen nutrition powders tablets gummies water

Can your body use collagen?

Yes. Just like your body can use vitamins, fats, carbohydrates, and minerals, your body can use collagen. Collagen is a protein, and your body uses it. 

The amazing thing about collagen, is that it is consisting of a unique set of amino acids "which do not occur in other proteins"(1). It's these specific amino acids, specifically glycine, that supply the building blocks for your body to build and renew its own collagen.

What can collagen nutrition do for my body?

Numerous studies on ingestible collagen have shown "significantly improved skin hydration, elasticity, roughness, and density," as well as promising support for "wound healing and skin aging," and many more benefits. (2, 4

What types of collagen exists?

There are numerous types of collagen in existence, but really only 3 very valuable types for nutritional use. Type I collagen, the most abundant type of collagen in our bodies, and supports our skin, hair, nails, bones and teeth, tendons, ligaments, and gut. It is also responsible for most of the healing and repair work in the body.(3)

Type III is the next most present type of collagen in the body. It has similar properties as type one.

Type II collagen makes up most of our joint cartilage.

collagen nutrition and the body

Where does collagen come from?

Collagen comes from animals, mainly the skins, bones, or connective tissues. There are no vegan or plant sources of collagen. The most common sources of nutritional collagen come from bovine, chicken, and fish (fish is typically called "marine collagen"). These can all be good sources when raised and manufactured carefully.

What's extra good about marine collagen?

Marine collagen, when sourced from fish, is better absorbed by the body because the peptides are smaller. Plus, it has the highest amount of glycine in the game! Glycine is an essential amino acid known as the "beauty amino" and you won't find a better supply of it than hydrolyzed marine collagen. This is great news if you're interested in aging skin. This is why we used marine collagen from wild caught fish for our flagship product, Amino Collagen C.

How can I get collagen in my diet?

Natural, intact sources of collagen are so unappetizing that they are almost non-existent in the human diet. This is bad news for aging well. The good news, is now there are ingestible collagen powders. Sure, you can eat gelatins and animal products, but the most appetizing and efficient way of getting collagen in your diet is by using a hydrolyzed supplement (powder)

The perks of using a powder supplement are several. First, none of the health benefits get lost through digestion, the protein is already broken down. Further, there is no accompanying cholesterol, fats, or undesirable elements existing in ingestible powers. Ever tried chewing on fish scales, chicken bones, or cartilage? It's not a great experience.

Elavonne's Amino Collagen C allows for easy delivery into drinks or foods with no flavors, sugars, dairy, or fats.

collagen uses

How long does it take for collagen to work?

It takes at least 12 weeks for collagen to start to show it's major benefits. That said, don't stop after 12 weeks. Like any nutritional habit, you need to maintain it to reap the benefits. Collagen is not a trend or quick fix.

If you're expecting immediate results, one might be skeptical of the benefits of collagen. However, numerous studies on ingestible collagen have measured the effects, especially as they relate to skin health.(6)

How much collagen do I need each day?

Every person is different, and there is no established daily value recommendation for collagen. That said, numerous randomized, placebo-controlled trials measured improvements to the appearance when administering 10 grams per day. (4

Two scoops of Elavonne's Amino Collagen C  delivers 10 grams of collagen peptides, including almost 3,000mg of glycine!

How to use Elavonne's collagen

Our Amino Collagen C goes through quality manufacturing processes that render it odorless, unlike other marine products. It's super versatile and won't give you that "Ew" feeling either during or after eating it. 

When it comes to adding our collagen powders to your diet, the sky is the limit. There are numerous recipes that make getting dietary collagen a snap. Our fans love adding a scoop to their morning coffee, smoothies, or just mixing it up in a glass of water. It dissolves clear in about 60 seconds and there are no sugars, or fillers to mess up your diet. It's simple.

The bottom line is, there is convincing evidence that collagen nutrition works and it's easy to add it to our diets. Put your doubts to rest like millions others and see the results for yourself!

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Cites and References

  1. Gauza-Włodarczyk M, Kubisz L, Włodarczyk D. Amino acid composition in determination of collagen origin and assessment of physical factors effects. Int J Biol Macromol. 2017;104(Pt A):987-991. doi:10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2017.07.013
  2. Bolke, Liane et al. “A Collagen Supplement Improves Skin Hydration, Elasticity, Roughness, and Density: Results of a Randomized, Placebo-Controlled, Blind Study.” Nutrients vol. 11,10 2494. 17 Oct. 2019, doi:10.3390/nu11102494
  3. Ferreira A.M., Gentile P., Chiono V., Ciardelli G. "Collagen for bone tissue regeneration." Acta Biomater. 2012;8:3191–3200. doi: 10.1016/j.actbio.2012.06.014. [PubMed
  4. Choi, Franchesca D. et al. “Oral Collagen Supplementation: A Systematic Review of Dermatological Applications.” Journal of drugs in dermatology : JDD vol. 18,1 (2019): 9-16. 
  5. León-López, Arely et al. “Hydrolyzed Collagen-Sources and Applications.” Molecules (Basel, Switzerland) vol. 24,22 4031. 7 Nov. 2019, doi:10.3390/molecules24224031
  6. Proksch, E et al. “Oral supplementation of specific collagen peptides has beneficial effects on human skin physiology: a double-blind, placebo-controlled study.” Skin pharmacology and physiology vol. 27,1 (2014): 47-55. doi:10.1159/000351376
collagen collagen effects glycine nutrition

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