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Collagen: A Must-Have Supplement for Health and Longevity

As you get older (like in your twenties), your body naturally stops producing as much collagen as when you're younger. If you can imagine a giant net that catches tiny minnows, and here and there, some rope fibers begin to fray little by little.


Some people visualize collagen as the skin's "scaffolding." This is the structure formed by the extracellular matrix (ECM). Cells attach to receptors on ECM molecules, such as fibronectin, vitronectin, laminin, elastin, and collagen.


It makes up about 75 percent of the dry weight of skin, giving it plumpness and wrinkle-free.


Skin gets dry and wrinkly through two processes.


Intrinsic – You get older. All your organs do that.

Extrinsic – Things in your environment take their toll.


Intrinsic aging is unavoidable. It happens to everyone, and you can fight it with surgery and Botox or collagen injections, but time is still going to march on.


Extrinsic aging is sometimes unavoidable, but you can often control what you subject your skin to. This effect results from too much sun exposure, ultraviolet (UV) irradiation, smoking, pollution, lack of sleep, and poor nutrition.


Many studies show promising evidence for rejuvenating aging and damaged skin, easing painful joints, and improving energy and zest for life. The hope of influencing collagen production during hormonal changes like puberty, pregnancy, menopause, and andropause prompts studies and new technologies


Collagen is rich in amino acids, proline, and glycine, helping keep your bones, tendons, and joints healthy.


As you mature, the spongy cartilage of your joints begins to wear away. Evidence shows that hydrolyzed collagen supplementation may support joints, restore bone density in people with osteoporosis and osteoarthritis, and decrease pain


Some evidence shows that taking collagen supplements can even increase muscle mass. Who doesn't want that?


Remember that aging and damage gradually wears away at your collagen fibers? The following steps can help you maintain your health and longevity.

  • Stay out of the sun

  • Don't smoke.

  • Limit exposure to pollution.

  • Eat a variety of healthy food

There is evidence that your body might heal more quickly and better with increased collagen supplementation.


Including more collagen in your daily routine may improve healing rate, body composition, and joint health


Collagen supplements come in a variety of types. A person should choose the supplement that best supports their goals when picking a collagen type. These types are:

  • Collagen I and III that support healthy skin.

  • Collagen II and III that help promote joint health.

These can be further broken down into specifically targeted effects.

  • Type 1 is one of the most abundant collagens in humans and keeps skin healthy.

  • Type 2 is found mostly in the cartilage and improves skin elasticity.

  • Type 3 also helps promote skin health by improving elasticity.

  • Type 5 helps support the growth of the placenta during pregnancy.

  • Type 10 occurs in cartilage to promote bone growth and health.

Most supplements include several of these types in their formulas, along with others


Some collagen supplements may cause mild digestive side effects in random people. It's always a good idea to discuss your concerns with your doctor or healthcare professional before embarking on a new supplement routine of any kind.


Possible mild side effects can include:

  • Diarrhea.

  • A heavy sensation in the stomach or bowel.

  • Rashes.

You may want to avoid using while pregnant or nursing unless given the go-ahead from your doctor. Otherwise, in most adults, taking collagen supplements should not pose any significant health risks.


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