Have you been seeing lots of advertisements for collagen supplements lately? From lotions to pills, collagen has been said to be the fountain of youth.
But what exactly is collagen?
Collagen is a protein that forms connective tissue in our bodies. It keeps our bones, hair and nails strong, and helps our skin to stay elastic. As we age, the collagen that we have starts to disappear. Environmental factors like sun exposure and pollution only make it worse. The reason why collagen treatments have become so popular in recent years is that there is hope that taking collagen can help supplement what we are losing naturally over time. This would keep us looking and feeling young and healthy.
Is collagen controversial?
The main issue with taking collagen supplements is that scientists cannot confirm if it actually works. They do not know how much collagen is actually properly absorbed by the body once ingested. If only a relatively small amount is absorbed by the body, there wouldn’t be enough benefits to justify the use of collagen. Until now, several small-scale studies have been done to find out how collagen works. They have found that taking collagen supplements over a couple of months can improve the elasticity of skin and reduce joint pain. But again, these studies use small groups of people, so the findings should perhaps not yet be completely trusted. They do however show promise of benefits! If these potential benefits sound good to you, it’s definitely worth discussing with your doctor or naturopath to find out if taking collagen can help you.
If you are interested in trying collagen, check out this local British Columbia business, WithinUs! They use sustainably-sourced wild-caught fish scales in their collagen.
For more information, check out https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/09/style/self-care/collagen-benefits.html