Whether you are a man or woman, your body needs essential nutrients to stay healthy and strong. The human body is made up of millions of cells that support each other so they remain strong and healthy. Collagen is the main structural protein in the skin, organs and tissues. When you don’t have enough of it, you can start seeing fine lines and wrinkles appear on your skin.
Collagen is also important for hair growth, nail health, and wound healing as it helps elasticity and strength. The main reason why many people struggle to get enough collagen is because we eat too much processed foods that have been stripped of all vital nutrients. Luckily there are plenty of natural sources of collagen that you can add to your diet to boost levels in your skin, nails, and hair. Here are some excellent sources of collagen that you should know about.
Why Is Collagen Important?
Collagen is a connective tissue that is found in our skin, ligaments, tendons, bones, and gums. It is a key component of our connective tissue, which is responsible for a lot of basic functions, including keeping our skin healthy and elastic. Collagen is also involved in the growth and repair of the ligaments, tendons, and other connective tissues in our bodies. If you suffer from a certain form of connective tissue disorder, such as osteoarthritis or an inflammatory condition, then collagen can be added to your diet as a supplement. You can also take collagen for aesthetic reasons. For example, collagen can be used for Botox injections to reduce wrinkles around the forehead, or injectable fillers to restore volume and shape to your lips or cheeks.
Eggs are a very efficient and convenient source of collagen. They are low in calories and fat, and high in protein. They are also inexpensive and very easy to consume. Eggs are also an excellent source of choline which is necessary for the synthesis of carnitine, a molecule involved in the transport of fat into cells, and vitamins D and K which are both required for the production of collagen.
There are all sorts of ways to eat eggs, and it can be a bit of a personal decision on what works best for you given your diet and preferences. If you’re looking to make eggs part of a more regular meal rotation, you can scramble them in a pan, add some cheese and veggies, or try a frittata or omelet.
Kelp is a seaweed that is very rich in proteins, amino acids, minerals, and vitamins, making it a great supplement for health. It is a very low-calorie, yet nutritious food that is extremely good for our gut health and acts as anti-oxidants. People consume it as a supplement before and during intense workouts because it can improve muscle recovery and increase endurance.
Kelp is abundant in the healthy amino acid, glycine, which helps to prevent muscle breakdown, which can result in injury and soreness. It is also rich in iodine, a mineral that is crucial for thyroid health, metabolism, and for strengthening a person’s immune system. Kelp also contains specific types of collagen that are well studied for their health benefits.
Beef is a good source of protein and amino acids, and it is a rich source of B vitamins, iron, zinc, and selenium. It is also a good source of choline and goitrogens. Beef is low in fat and calories and has good nutrient density. Altogether, these nutrients help our body build strong bones, muscles, and connective tissues. The protein in beef is of high quality, with all the essential amino acids present in adequate amounts.
Beef is a also great source of collagen. In fact, it is one of the best animal sources of collagen ever. To reap these benefits, try to consume beef that is grass-fed and organic. This type of beef is relatively low in saturated fat, high in omega-3 fatty acid and has high levels of CLA or conjugated linoleic acid, which has been shown to have anti-cancer properties. If you are not a fan of meat, there are a number of products with beef collagen, mostly in powder form.
Fish & Marine Collagen Supplements
Fish is a great source of lean protein, low in carbs, and totally keto approved! It’s low in fat and contains lots of omega-3 fatty acids. In addition, it contains a high amount of collagen. The most commonly consumed fish in this category are salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring. These fish are very rich in omega-3 fatty acid and are invaluable for our health because they are anti-inflammatory and help to prevent against heart and artery diseases.
If you’re not a fan of fish meat, try fish collagen supplements that come in liquid or capsule form, making it very easy to consume on a daily basis, sometimes also known as “marine collagen”. You can also make a delicious salmon or mackerel salad for lunch or dinner and enjoy the benefits of fish collagen.
Some fish also contains astaxanthin, which gives it its characteristic pinkish-red color (especially in trout or salmon.) Astaxanthin is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect against oxidative stress and damage to cells throughout the body. So eat more fish! You will thank yourself for it later in life!
Citrus fruits, like oranges, lemons and grapefruits are a great source of vitamin C, which is an excellent antioxidant that helps to fight off harmful bacteria and viruses. Although citrus fruits do not contain collagen, we add them to this list because they have an amazing potential to support the natural synthesis of collagen in the human body.
Vitamin C helps in collagen production by regulating the production of Type 1 procollagen which is important to keep the skin healthy and firm. Vitamin C also stimulates the enzyme cathelicidin which helps in the production of another collagen component called aggrecan. This process leads to collagen synthesis.
To support the natural synthesis of collagen and at the same time supply your body with a large amount of several important vitamins, make sure to add citrus fruits to your diet!
Collagen is a very important component in the health and beauty of the skin and is needed for the maintenance of the skin’s strength and elasticity. You can get it from a lot of different sources, but the most efficient way to consume it is by including beef, kelp, eggs, citrus fruits, and fish in your diet. If you are not a fan of either of these foods, there are still a number of ways to supply your body with collagen, such as dietary supplements.