Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body and is responsible for regenerating in forming new tissue. It is critical to this structure of bones, joints, skin, hair, and nails.
During the aging process collagen fibers breakdown in the rate of degeneration slows dramatically. This process can start in the mid-20s and by the age of 40 collagen production generally decreases by 25%, and by age 60 it has decreased by greater than 50%. The results of this process is aching joints and signs and pain of osteoarthritis.
Collagen to is found in bones, muscles, skin, tendons, and ligaments. Type 1 Collagen is gram for gram stronger than steel. Collagen supplements have been shown in several studies to protect against bone and joint degenerative diseases and to fight skin aging.
The type of collagen and how it is combined in supplements are critical to its success. The vast majority of collagen fall into 3 categories - Types 1, 2, and 3. Type 1 collagen is found primarily in skin, bones, tendons, organs, and blood vessels and is commonly found alongside Type 3 collagen. Together, Type 1 and Type 3 collagen account for about 90% of the body’s total collagen. Type 2 collagen makes up about 50% of the protein found in cartilage.
Type 1 and 3 collagens can be taken together, but it's best to take Type 2 separately, as taking them together can decrease their overall effects. If you are using all three, space them out by several hours. For example, take Type 2 in the morning and take Types 1 and 3, which can be combined, in the evening - ideally at bedtime and on an empty stomach. It is important to get the right dosage and studies suggesting a range of 2-10g per day is effective, but higher doses are not harmful.
Hydrolyzed collagen, or collagen hydrolysate is a form that has been broken down to allow it to be easier to digest and absorb. Hydrolyzed collagen also dissolves easily in cold water which makes it more convenient to take. The highest quality collagen products are made from organic sources such as grass-fed cows or seafood. Pure collagen should be colorless when mixed with water and virtually tasteless.
You can find collagen in many forms such as powders, capsules, drink mixes, and chewable tablets. Some products may also contain vitamins A, C, or E, and these helped the body’s natural production of collagen, and hyaluronic acid, a lubricating substance naturally produced by the body which helps retain collagen in joints, bone, and skin.
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