With so many types of protein sources and protein powders, it can often be confusing to know exactly which is the best form of protein for you. Collagen protein supplements have gained popularity due to their unique qualities.
Here are just some reasons to consider collagen protein powders as a part of your keto diet or any diet for that matter.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is the second most abundant substance in the human body, second only to H2O (water). Collagen peptide proteins are responsible for creating strong connective tissue, and healthy skin, and are an essential building block for numerous systems in the body (medical advice).
Responsible for protecting blood vessels, tendons, bones, ligaments, and internal organs, collagen is necessary for the overall health and well-being of the body.
What Causes Collagen to Become Depleted?
The main factor in the loss of collagen over time is aging. The normal wear and tear of the human body cause the skin to become less elastic, and thinner, with weaker connective tissue. This results in wrinkles, as well as the common signs of aging, such as spots and thin skin.
The body actually begins losing its ability to generate new collagen around 20 years of age, causing healing time to slow down, joints to begin becoming stiffer, and skin losing its tightness.
What is the Connection Between Collagen and Skin Health?
Our skin is primarily composed of collagen protein. In addition to elastic, GAGs, and glycosaminoglycans, collagen comprises roughly 80% of the skin (by dry weight). Having adequate collagen (with amino acids) in the skin ensures the elasticity, strength, and durability of dermatitis.
Too much sun exposure is one reason for the degradation of collagen in the skin, which can lead to long-term health consequences. Replenishing your collagen through supplementation may help the skin regenerate after bouts of excessive sun exposure.
There are also many topical creams containing collagen that help replenish this vital nutrient, in addition to supplementation.
What Are the Benefits of Collagen Protein Supplements?
Some of the reported benefits of this type of protein supplement are better metabolism, improved muscle retention, healthier skin, increased quality of sleep, increased energy levels, and better skin elasticity, just to name a few. Read our low-carb protein reviews here.
Increased metabolism and energy levels can allow the body to shed extra weight, and collagen protein has been touted as a helpful aid in the process of weight loss.
What Is the Best Source of Collagen Protein?
Collagen protein can be derived from many sources. You can get extra collagen by increasing certain foods in your diet, such as kelp and soy products, or you can take naturally derived collagen supplements medically reviewed.
CoQ10 contains abundant levels of collagen, which also helps support cardiovascular health. Many collagen supplements are derived from marine and bovine sources, so be sure to research the quality of where these supplements are sourced.
Ideally, you would want to find an organic and GMO-free source of collagen protein. Be sure to speak with a nutritionist or trained health care practitioner if you have any questions about collagen protein.
Proven Health Benefits of Collagen For Your Body
Let's look at the benefits of collagen powder. Collagen is found throughout your body, in connective tissues, and in your skin. As you age, your body loses collagen, which causes your skin to become loose and more susceptible to damage.
Collagen supplements' benefits go beyond just having healthier skin; there are many things it can help. Below are just a few ways taking collagen supplements benefits your body.
As you age, your skin loses its natural firmness and becomes less supple. Without collagen, your skin becomes wrinkled, and the signs of aging start to appear. You can apply collagen creams directly to your skin, or take them in pill form to help combat this natural occurrence.
Collagen Benefits for Skin Conditions
Taking oral collagen supplements benefits the overall condition of your skin. The collagen can help improve acne conditions and eczema and even help with the appearance of cuts and scars. For adolescents and adults who suffer from acne or other skin disorders, short-term collagen supplementation can be an effective form of treatment.
Many people who suffer from arthritis have lowered collagen levels in their bodies. The lack of collagen found in joints and cartilage contributes to the joint pain and discomfort of arthritis. The collagen is damaged by the excessive inflammation in the joints, but it can be repaired with the use of collagen supplements.
A study in 2009 published by the Journal of the American Dietetic Association claimed that older women who took collagen supplements were able to maintain their lean body mass. The effects of aging and the breakdown of collagen can cause the body to become flabbier, and lean body mass is lost.
While there is no proof that collagen supplement's benefits can stop the aging process, there is proof that your overall health can improve. Speak to your doctor before starting any supplement for muscle mass.
As a person ages and collagen production slows, bones can become weaker as the person loses the collagen necessary to keep the bones strong and supported.
Should You Take Collagen Protein Everyday?
If you're going to take collagen daily, the best way to do so is through high-quality collagen protein powder, which delivers the necessary levels of protein and has a low GI. Some brands also have a focus on promoting good skin and nails and therefore are also more health-conscious. Collagen powders are often made from animal products or from plant extracts. These options contain different types of collagen, bone broth but there are two types: human and bacterial. Human collagen is the most popular source of collagen to improve skin and it comes from the connective tissue of the body, mainly muscle, skin, and blood vessels. Bacterial collagen is made by yeast and is more processed, meaning it may be harder to digest.
You can get collagen from a number of different foods, but when I mention the human, it's often cow's or pig's bone or hooves, or it can also be from dairy products such as cheese. Some collagen powders also come from nuts or beans. These sources are more problematic for people with allergies to food or insect bites or stings. But they are a better choice than some of the plant-based sources and my top choice is collagen powder from GNC, which is animal-friendly and has ultra-filtered water content.
Is Collagen Protein Worth Taking?
Collagen is one of the most popular alternative nutrition supplements of the last few years. This is because collagen can help maintain skin and hair health. This is especially true of older women, who may have lost some of their natural collagen as their body ages. Collagen supplements, if used appropriately, can help combat this problem. However, the composition of most collagen supplements is not sufficient to have significant health benefits, and if they are taken for longer than a couple of weeks they may cause inflammation in the digestive tract (advice diagnosis or treatment).
In addition, the body has natural sources of collagen in the form of the proteolytic enzymes responsible for breaking down muscle tissue. When these are taken without food or when not ingested, the body can't break them down and absorb them. Aside from the health risks, there are other issues that keep many consumers away from collagen powders. While some ingredients, such as whey protein isolate, may be lacking in phytonutrients and other nutrients that make for a healthier diet, they are still very useful as a supplement to any diet. Unfortunately, this isn't the case for all collagen supplements.
What Does Collagen Do For the Body?
Collagen, when ingested, activates the blood-sugar meter in your body, explaining why low levels can be a sign of malnutrition and starvation. Dr. Linda Levine, chief of Digestive Health for Pfizer, told Health that "collagen has a range of health benefits: It promotes muscle and bone health. It provides healthy skin, including the lining of the nose. It improves heart health and blood flow to the heart, which keeps it strong.
It can also improve your mood, reduce stress and improve cognitive function," Dr. Levine says. Collagen isn't just used to repair joints. It is also taken to replace other types of protein in the body, such as collagen found in the skin and the connective tissues of the body.
Why Take Collagen on Keto?
Collagen supplementation has gained popularity among individuals following a ketogenic (keto) diet, and for good reason. The ketogenic diet, characterized by low carbohydrate intake and increased fat consumption, can have specific implications for skin, joint health, and connective tissues. Incorporating collagen into a keto diet can provide unique advantages supported by scientific evidence.
- Maintaining Skin Health: Collagen is the most abundant protein in the skin and is crucial for its structure and elasticity. On a keto diet, which often lacks carbohydrates known to support skin health, collagen supplementation can help preserve skin elasticity and hydration. Studies have shown that collagen peptides can improve skin elasticity, moisture content, and reduce the signs of aging, such as wrinkles and fine lines.
- Supporting Joint Health: The ketogenic diet's lower carbohydrate content may limit the availability of glucose for cartilage maintenance. Collagen, which is a major component of joint cartilage, can help support joint health by providing the necessary building blocks for cartilage repair and maintenance. Research has indicated that collagen supplementation can reduce joint pain and improve joint function in individuals with osteoarthritis.
- Aiding Gut Health: Gut health is integral to overall well-being, and the keto diet can sometimes be low in dietary fiber. Collagen contains the amino acid glycine, which is known to support gut health by aiding digestion and promoting the integrity of the intestinal lining. This can be particularly beneficial for individuals experiencing digestive issues on a keto diet.
- Promoting Hair and Nail Health: Collagen is also a key component of hair and nails. Some individuals on a keto diet report hair loss and brittle nails due to changes in nutrient intake. Collagen supplementation can provide the necessary amino acids to support healthy hair and nail growth.
- Enhancing Weight Management: Collagen is a highly satiating protein source, which means it can help curb appetite and support weight management—a significant goal for many individuals on a keto diet aiming for weight loss.
While collagen supplementation on a keto diet offers these potential benefits, it's essential to choose high-quality collagen products that are hydrolyzed (broken down into smaller peptides for better absorption) and free from added sugars or artificial additives. Additionally, consulting with a healthcare provider or registered dietitian before introducing any supplements into your diet, including collagen, is advisable.
In summary, taking collagen on a ketogenic diet can be beneficial for maintaining skin health, supporting joint function, promoting gut health, enhancing hair and nail health, and aiding weight management. These advantages are grounded in scientific research and can complement the unique nutritional profile of a keto diet. However, always prioritize quality and consult with a healthcare professional to ensure collagen supplementation aligns with your specific dietary and health goals.
Are There Any Collagen Side-Effects or Negative Aftereffects?
Side effects of taking collagen supplements may include the risk of hypercalcemia. This may possibly be because powder may contain marine sources, such as shark cartilage or shellfish, that usually also may contain a big dose of calcium. Symptoms of excessive calcium include nausea, chronic fatigue, and disrupted heart rhythms.
Also, it may have a negative effect on the Kidney ad skin.
Consider keto-friendly collagen protein powder, it just may help you to reach your health goals.