Although our bodies produce collagen naturally, some of us may still have a deficiency. On top of that, because cells also lose their metabolic activity as time passes, collagen production decreases naturally.
If you are not a fan of supplements, adding collagen to your body naturally is achievable – with collagen-rich foods.
Benefits of Collagen
Collagen has a wealth of benefits that help maintain good health, which impacts our lives as well. This protein:
- Promotes bone health
- Improves skin health
- Boosts hair growth
- Enhances nail texture
- Ensures a healthy weight
- Increases muscle mass
Foods Rich in Collagen
Here are some collagen-rich foods that you can easily incorporate into your diet. If you do not consume most of them, you should already start since they naturally produce collagen in your body.
Not to mention, chicken is rich in protein. Moreover, chicken legs are also rich in collagen, according to studies. If you cut down an entire chicken, you will see that it contains a lot of connective tissue, which is the primary source of collagen.
Fish and Shellfish
The next natural collagen-rich foods are fish and shellfish. Collagen is also found in the ligaments and bones of fish. According to researchers, fish meat contains the least amount of collagen. The collagen-rich part of the fish, scales, however, is not edible. Apart from that, fish eyes, skin and even its head provide abundance of collagen.
Bones and cartilages contain a lot of collagen, but they don’t exist in an egg. Proline is an amino acid found in eggs that plays a crucial role in the production of collagen. It is usually found in the egg whites and not in the yolks.
Among the many benefits of berries is their ability to produce collagen. Raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries contain more Vitamin C than most citrus fruits. Collagen is produced in the body naturally by vitamin C.
Fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C boost collagen production. Oranges, lemons, and limes are the most common citrus fruits. They are packed with vitamin C. In addition, foods high in vitamins are always beneficial to the body. In short, eating citrus fruits at breakfast or after a meal offers our bodies many benefits.
Apart from citrus fruits, tropical fruits such as mango, guava, and pineapple also produce collagen. We know that fruits offer many benefits to our bodies, and collagen is one of them. This is why nutritionists recommend that you eat one fruit a day.
Beans like kidney beans and black beans are rich in protein. As proteins, they contain the amino acids that help the body build collagen. Aside from being rich in proteins, they also have copper, which is an excellent nutrient for collagen synthesis. To top it off, legumes enable our bodies to naturally produce collagen. Chickpeas are one of them.
A typical kitchen ingredient of our normal everyday lives is garlic. Garlic contains sulfur, a mineral integral to the production of collagen. Aside from helping the body produce collagen, it also helps prevent the breakdown of the collagen already present.
Researchers say that the quantity of garlic matters. Adding garlic to your diet can increase the amount of collagen breakdown in your body. You should also consider that eating raw garlic in excess can result in heartburn or stomach aches. You can add garlic to your daily food recipes if you like the taste of it. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that garlic eaten raw or in excessive amounts to boost collagen production can be potentially harmful.
Even if you despise eating greens, they are healthy for you. Greens are an essential part of a healthy diet. Leafy greens such as spinach and kale are high in chlorophyll which also forms collagen. Hence once consumed, they start producing collagen in the body. Not only that, but they also have antioxidant properties, purify your blood and are beneficial to your health in general.
The benefits of raw or cooked tomatoes are well documented. Beauty regimes include it as well. The nutrients in tomatoes, lycopene and vitamin C, contribute to the production of collagen in our bodies.
All of us enjoy having cashews as a snack. This crunchy, little nut contains zinc and copper, which helps us produce huge quantities of collagen in the body. Next time, if you like cashews but are hesitant to buy them, you should because they are rich in collagen.
Peppers are not only delicious in pasta and sandwiches, but they are also high in collagen. A bell pepper of any color, red, green, or yellow, contains a large amount of Vitamin C, which makes them a great source of health benefits such as anti-inflammatory compounds.
Oysters are a good source of collagen for people who love seafood. Oysters are used in many dishes, and they can also be enjoyed as a side dish with cocktails. Many of us don’t realize that oysters contain copper, which plays an important role in building collagen in our bodies.
Which foods should I avoid?
It’s not possible to get collagen from just one source. Foods that are high in protein, either from plants or animals, are excellent sources of collagen.
To build collagen naturally, however, try to stay away from sugars and carbohydrates. Excessive carbohydrates and sugar intake can damage collagen cause inflammation. As a result, you may experience mild stomach pains and the loss of collagen in your body.
Does consuming collagen helps in improving the skin?
Collagen helps in improving skin, however, there is no definite proof based on this discussion. Most women who ingest collagen have noticed that collagen helps to improve skin elasticity and reduces wrinkles. There is no clear explanation for why collagen works in this way. It won’t be incorrect to say that those who consume collagen tend to have finer skin, also it has anti-aging properties.
What is Collagen peptide powder?
Powdered collagen can be an alternative way to get collagen. Despite eating foods high in collagen, our bodies fail to break them down into their protein constituents, so we do not get sufficient collagen to see the desired results. Due to this reason, collagen peptide powders are available in the market. Chekc out the best ones here.
Peptide powders are usually hydrolyzed. Being hydrolyzed means they are broken into simpler and smaller protein units and easily taken with any Powders such as these dissolve easily in liquids.
Once peptides are inside the body, our enzymes and cells can function better because the collagen units are present in their simpler form. Powder forms are in huge demand in markets since they can be added to coffee, smoothies, and shakes making it easy to consume. A couple scoops of the powder won’t hurt you, since it is a healthy food source, too.
Frequently Asked Questions on Collagen Rich Foods
What are the side effects of having collagen?
Taking too much collagen is rarely harmful. There can always be mild side effects from taking too many supplements. Some of these include:
- Stomach ache
- Stomach heaviness
How much collagen-rich foods should we actually consume?
Food sources rich in collagen do not harm the body. Foods containing collagen often benefit our bodies in other ways, as well. It is best to consult your physician or nutritionist before taking collagen supplements.
The reason for taking collagen depends on what you are trying to achieve. The amount of collagen your body needs depends on whether you are taking it to improve bones, muscles, joints, or skin. The determines the dosage and amount of medication to be taken. Depending on the dose, it could range anywhere between 2.5 grams and even 10 grams. The number of grams you intake per day should not exceed 40 grams.
What fruits contain collagen?
Citrus fruits like oranges, kiwis, mangoes, pineapple and guavas are loaded with collagen.
This concludes our post about collagen-rich foods. In the long run, having a balanced amount of collagen in our body helps, and we can definitely see the difference. Collagen is available both in the form of natural foods and as a supplement, so you can choose what works best for you.