Collagen is the most substantial protein in our body. It is found in bones, muscles, tendons, skin, blood vessels, and even the digestive system. It gives our skin strength and elasticity and replaces dead skin cells, and helps with wound healing. Both tendons and ligaments are made of it, so you can consider collagen the “glue” that helps hold the body together.
There are 16 types of collagen in our body. These include types 1, 2, 3, 5, and 10. Here is a quick overview of what they all consist of:
- Type 1 – is most abundant and strongest, it helps form tendons, ligaments, organs, skin, bone and found in the GI tract
- Type 2 – helps build cartilage, key to joint health
- Type 3 – major component of the extracellular matrix that makes up our organs and skin, key to heart health
- Type 4 – forms basal lamina, which is found in endothelial cells that help form the tissues that surround organs, muscles and fat
- Type 5 – makes the surface of cells, hair strands and tissue found in women’s placentas
- Type 10 – helps with new bone formation and forming articular cartilage
So how can collagen boost your health?
- It improves the health of your hair and skin (increases elasticity and reduces cellulite and stretch marks)
- Reduces joint pain and degeneration
- Helps heal GI disorders such as leaky gut, IBS, acid reflux, Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis
- Boosts metabolism, muscle mass and energy output
- Strengthens hair, teeth and nails
- Improves liver health
- Protects cardiovascular health
You can take a collagen supplement on its own, mainly found in capsules or powder form, which is great to put in smoothies. When looking for a collagen supplement, try to include all the types discussed above. Also, make sure to take it with vitamin C, so your body can convert the collagen into a usable protein. Another way to get more collagen in your diet is through a daily dose of bone broth, which is nutrient dense, easy to digest, and rich in flavor. If you prefer bone broth over a collagen supplement, just make sure it’s from grass fed, organic source.
Feel free to contact me with any questions you may have or if you would like some guidance on choosing a good brand.