Collagen is a protein found abundantly in the fibrous, connective and structural tissue such as muscle, tendons and skin in all animal bodies. It is created by the body and additionally consumed in a carnivorous diet, whilst nutrients that support collagen development can be found in the vegan diet such as Vitamin C in fruits, Copper in nuts and Vitamin A in plants.
Collagen is essential for the healthy growth and maintenance of these structural tissues, however, our bodies natural collagen production and stores deplete as we age. Slowing collagen production can be first seen typically around 30 years of age when skin begins to become less elastic, fine lines appear and muscle aches lengthen. Throughout our 40’s, 50’s and 60’s these symptoms worsen leading to wrinkles, hormonal changes, tendon and ligament damage.
There are three common types of Collagen which serve different uses:
Collagen Type I: This is the most abundant form of collagen and is responsible for Skin, Organ and Tendon repair. This type of collagen is often supplemented by those looking to turn back the hands of time and alleviate the effects of ageing on the skin.
Collagen Type II: This type of Collagen is predominantly found in and responsible for Cartilage health. It is supplemented by those looking to maintain healthy -or to repair damaged- joints and cartilage, damage which is often caused by impact exercises such as running.
Collagen Type III: Responsible for reticular fibres in organs such as the liver and in bones. This type of collagen is typically found alongside and supplemented with Collagen Type I again to rejuvenate skin and organs.
Research has shown that by the age of 40 our bodies production of Collagen has fallen by 25% and by age 60 that figure has increased to 50%.
Increased production or intake of the correct type of Collagen has been touted to:
- Reduce the signs of ageing on skin
- Support and repair joints & cartilage.
- Improve liver health.
- Improve digestion & metabolism.
- Improve circulation.
- Thicken hair and reduce hair loss.
- Improve damaged nails.
As aforementioned, Collagen production can be boosted by certain nutrients, most notably:
Turkey, Fatty Fish, Oranges, Raspberries, and Flaxseeds.
When increasing natural Collagen production is not enough, Collagen supplements become extremely useful and are readily available on Amazon and most large supplement stores. Suggested dosages for Collagen Type 1 & 3 range from 2000mg-6000mg per day and Type 2 from 2000mg-4000mg dependant upon the individual.