The Ultimate Guide to Collagen Protein
There are very few things that benefit you in as many ways as collagen. Healthy hydrated skin and hair, strong bones, and flexible joints are just a few of the benefits of collagen. So what is it made of, how is it used, and how do you get it? We're covering all of that and more in today's article!
What is Collagen Protein?
If you forget everything else in this article, remember this.
Collagen protein is the glue that holds your body together.
Collagen protein is the most abundant type of protein found in the body. It's kinda like the bricks of your fortress aka. your body and it's what makes up healthy skin, teeth, bones, joints, and connective tissue. Collagen is made up of glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline—three important amino acids that help your body make new collagen. Collagen is sourced from the bones, skin, and connective tissue of animals, mostly cows but not always. Although this may not sound appetizing, collagen powders are completely tasteless and provide amazing nutrients to the body.
28 Types of Collagen
There are at least 28 different types of collagen, but there are 3 core types that your body is made from: Types l, ll, and lll. Types l and lll are what your skin, muscles, and ligaments are made up of while Type ll is found in the eyes and cartilage. HydroSwell Collagen is primarily made from type l with small amounts of type lll. This is the most common form of collagen powder.
Collagen has a lot of different names so it can be confusing. The terms "collagen peptides," "hydrolyzed collagen," "collagen hydrolysate," "hydrolyzed collagen peptides," and "collagen powder" all refer to the same thing.
Most collagen powders come in a Hydrolyzed form which refers to collagen that has undergone a natural process called hydrolysis. This process breaks down the amino acids into smaller molecules which allows them to be more bioavailable. In other words, your body can absorb it and use it much easier so you get all the benefits we already mentioned.
Now that you know what collagen is, it's time to dive deeper into the benefits. Read on to find out why so many people are adding collagen to their daily routine.
Hydrated Healthy Skin
At HydroSwell, we're all about having fun in the sun, but it's no secret that the sun takes a toll on your skin. Skin is primarily made up of collagen and starting in your 20's your body stops producing the amount of collagen you need to prevent sagging skin and wrinkles. Studies show that supplementing with collagen supports hydrated skin and may reduce wrinkles. In addition, collagen helps promote healthy hair and nails. If you're 20 or older and especially if you spend time in the sun, you should make a habit of collagen supplementation to have healthy natural skin!
Strengthens Bones, Joints, & Muscle
Whether you surf, climb, or anything in between, you're putting pressure on your joints and cartilage. If you've ever suffered an injury, you know how hard it is to get back to full strength. Cartilage in particular does not regenerate in adults, so it's crucial to take care of your cartilage so you can keep doing what you love now and down the road.
A 2008 study found that athletes who took hydrolyzed collagen over a six-month period reduced joint pain after exercise. Other studies have shown that collagen helps to reduce soreness of the back and knees and supports strong bones.
Collagen is also a rich source of protein and important amino acids that aid in muscle synthesis, helping you build and maintain crucial muscle mass.
Longevity should be on every person's mind, young or old and there's overwhelming evidence that collagen should be an integral part of both injury prevention and rehabilitation for any active lifestyle individual.
Good Sources of Collagen
Some foods rich in collagen are...
- Bone broth
- Meats such as tendon, tripe, & oxtail (see oxtail soup pictured below)
- Egg yolk
- Salmon, chicken, and pork skins
We'll be straight with you. As a rule of thumb, you can get most nutrients that you need from your diet if you eat clean, but collagen is the exception. Unless you eat large amounts of collagen-rich foods daily, you won't get enough collagen to reap all the health benefits. The solution is to supplement with collagen.
How to use a collagen supplement
There are tons of collagen supplements out there from skincare to protein powders. We believe the easiest most dependable way to get the benefits of collagen is to use a collagen protein powder. It's important to choose a powder that comes from grass-fed, pasture-raised, hormone-free cows. Collagen is basically tasteless so it's SUPER EASY to fit it into your daily routine. Some of the most common ways to use it are to add it to something you already drink like a smoothie, your morning tea or coffee, a soup, or ProLoco!
PRO TIP: Combining 1 scoop of HydroSwell Collagen Peptides with ProLoco our Protein-powered & Vitamin-Infused Hydration Drink makes for a refreshing supercharged drink with amazing health benefits.
1 secret to get the most out of your collagen supplement
In a recent literature review, researchers noted that “Skin fibroblasts have an absolute dependence on vitamin C for the synthesis of collagen, and for the regulation of the collagen/elastin balance in the dermis,”
In translation, to get the benefits of collagen, you need plenty of Vitamin C. You can get Vitamin C naturally through your diet. Good sources include lightly cooked vegetables such as broccoli, brussel sprouts, and spinach as well as berries.
ProLoco, our protein-powered hydration drink is loaded with 100% daily value of Vitamin C so adding 1 scoop of HydroSwell Collagen Peptides to ProLoco not only provides a tasteless protein boost but also ensures you get all the benefits of the Collagen Protein.