What is collagen + should you be taking it?
Hello my beautiful friends,
I’m going to start this off by sharing something kind of crazy. Although I teach health/ wellness for a living and get to try tons of products, plus study just about every trending thing, I had never gotten on the collagen band wagon. It’s a funny one I’ve heard of the benefits of the years but for whatever reason never really got into it.
Not only have I become a RAVING fan of collagen, I’ve found a brand (Sparkle Wellness) that I am behind 100% because it is so data-driven and has the science to back their results. I’ve seen such incredible results since taking it and of course love sharing brands that I personally use.
In today’s blog I wanted to dive into this supplement, what exactly it does and why I recommend it. I’m sure there’s at least one of you out there that has wondered why certain brands are better than others, if it really works, and how long you need to take it before seeing changes.
WHAT IS COLLAGEN?
Collagen is a naturally occurring protein found in your body; it’s part of our skin, muscles, cartilage, ligaments, tendons, bones, eyes and blood vessels. Like all protein, it’s broken down into amino acids when digested, which then can produce more collagen the body needs, or is used for other uses.
When we are younger, our skin is full of collagen (up to 80% of collagen and water!), however as we age, are in the sun too much, live in cities with pollution, or deal with free radicals in the body, our collagen production decreases. This means that you will experience more fine lines, a decrease in the ‘glow’ of your skin, brittle hair and nails, hair shedding, and possible joint and gut issues.
Now, without getting toooo complicated here, when you have a collagen supplement you’re not actually having just straight collagen – rather you’re having collagen peptides. This is a scientific term for a smaller chain of amino acids (protein building blocks). These small changes are more easily broken down and absorbed by your body than larger ones.
Collagen peptides are short chains of amino acids, in comparison to collagen itself which is a relatively long chain of amino acids. These peptides are derived from collagen through a process called hydrolysis. Now, why is this important to know? Because not all brands are the same as they contain different peptide lengths, meaning your body will have a greater result with certain collagen supplements versus others.
WHY SHOULD YOU TAKE IT?
As mentioned above, collagen is already in your body and as we age it decreases. This is why you begin to see an increase in fine lines, thinning hair and that feeling that you you’re just ‘getting older.’
Supplementing with collagen can help to strengthen your hair, reduces shedding, creates stronger, thicker nails, it helps to promote heart and gut health, strengthens bones, and can relieve joint pain. Now, these are some powerful benefits to help you look and feel your best!
As with all products, I absolutely recommend making it a supplement to your diet, but not a replacement for healthy balanced meals. When you combine the two, you will start to see changes in your body and mind you didn’t even think possible!
MY FAVORITE BRAND + WHY
Here’s where it gets interesting. I’ve learned there are some brands that you will not give a bang for your buck (meaning their product contains less collagen necessary to see results) and others, such as Sparkle Wellness that has the science to back the results you will see.
So why am I such a fan of Sparkle’s products versus others that you may have heard of?
Their products contain VERISOL® which has been tested in multiple double blind studies. Results showed women taking it daily saw an increase in collagen in the skin by 60% (i.e. reduced fine lines/wrinkles) and that skin elasticity dramatically improved. This is important as science don’t lie my friends. There are many brands out there that claim to give you results but haven’t had the double blind tests to prove it.
Sparkle Wellness has Vitamin C included in the formulation. This is important as having a supply of Vitamin C in the bloodstream when there is a good dosage of collagen peptides means your skin cells are enabled to have best chance of absorbing and using the collagen peptides. (Learn more about the science here)