Collagen supplements

Collagen is a naturally occurring protein in the body that acts as connective tissue for other bodily tissues, including the heart, liver, blood cells, skin, nails, bones, teeth, muscle, and cartilage. In addition to holding these tissues together, collagen supports the internal organs. Without this glue, the body would not be able to stick together. Not only is collagen abundant in the body, it makes up about 25% of total body proteins. With age and with injuries, collagen gets worn away and destroyed, and many people desire to have it replaced (or supplemented) through pills, injections, or creams. This can be an optional decision or a medically mandatory one.

Importance of Collagen
Very different from other proteins, collagen can be found inside and outside of cells. Externally, it supports cell structure, and internally it is important as well. Collagen works very closely with its partner, elastin. It gives body tissues firmness, strength, and form, while elastin lends flexibility. The lungs, bones, tendons, blood vessels, and many more rely on this partnership. Collagen also works with keratin, a protein in hair, skin, nails, and teeth, to give skin its resilience, flexibility, and strength.

Medicinal uses of collagen also have their place. Cosmetic surgery, buying supplements, and treatment of burns are all popular uses. Additionally, deficiencies in collagen or it being a lower quality than it should be lead to the need to have it replaced. When collagen decreases in supply or effectiveness, bones deteriorate and become brittle, skin and muscles sag, joints and ligaments become weaker and stiffer, cartilage becomes thinner, and hair loses its waves and thickness. Any of these reasons are good cause for a dose of collagen.

The same reasons that cause other bodily systems to decrease in functioning ability can cause the degradation of collagen: nutritional deficiencies, smoking, alcohol, drugs, stress, dehydration, and trauma.

Collagen supplements are dietary aids that are taken in capsule form for a few reasons: to reduce arthritis symptoms and bone pain, promote healing, and to make the skin look healthier and not as wrinkly. That glossy, full-head-of-hair, tight-skin look is because of collagen. It stands to reason that to get these desirable features, one would have to supplement with the very thing that causes them. There are different types of collagen supplements and your choice should be relative to your ultimate goal. You should address two important questions when deciding on which product to take.

  1. Is the collagen supplement the purest form it could possibly be?
  2. What reasons do you need the collagen?

The answers to these questions will make the process a lot easier and point you in the right direction.

Purest Form of Collagen
The two types of collagen are bovine, from cows, and marine, which comes from fish. The latter is 50% more pure than the cow form. Consequently, it is also more expensive, but for something like this, you don’t want to take the cheap route. Marine collagen is also the most commonly used source of collagen supplementation.

Coordinating Your Need With The Product
Depending on why you need to take the collagen supplement, different products will have different effects. A guide is listed to help fish out what you need to know. Collagen is labeled as types and given a number.

  • Glucosamine: This is type 2 and is best for arthritis, orthopedic problems, and joint pains. Collagen 2 is mainly what forms hyaline cartilage, which forms the surface of joints by lining the bones.
  • Non-Glucosamine: Types 1 and 2 fall into this category, which are must abundant in the skin. Non-glucosamine collagen supplements are used for skin purposes, such as eliminating wrinkles.

In Addition to Collagen Supplements…
If taking a collagen supplement is right for you, consider the needs the usage leads to. Three things to be aware of are your intake of Vitamin C, lysine, and Alpha Lipoic Acid. Vitamin C is responsible for building collagen in the body and allowing it to work. Lysine helps with collagen formation. Alpha Lipoic Acid assists in recycling Vitamin C so it can continuously be used.

Check with your doctor about starting on a collagen supplement to make sure that, if you have allergies, it will not interfere with reactions. The bottle of the supplement will give you the correct dosage. Once started, you will undoubtedly see results soon. Once you have your reason, spoken to a physician, and chosen your price range, you’ll be all set to get those wrinkles straightened out and those bones moving again!

Last updated on Apr 21st, 2011 and filed under Health Supplements. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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