Unlocking the Secrets of Collagen: The Surprising Health Benefits You Need to Know

health benefits of collagen

Last updated on August 11th, 2023 at 07:14 pm

Collagen is the most abundant structural protein in your body, making up about 80% of your skin and playing an essential role in building and supporting many tissues, from bones and cartilage to the skin, hair, eyes, and the digestive system. The health benefits of collagen include improved skin elasticity, joint and bone health, hair and nail strength, and digestive health.

Unfortunately, as we age, our bodies naturally start reducing Collagen production. This further disrupts sun exposure, environmental pollutants, alcohol, smoking, stress, and collagen health benefits.

Because of this, many people turn to supplements to replace the Collagen that is lost or destroyed, in order to enjoy the potential health benefits of improved skin elasticity, joint health, and overall tissue support.

Forms of Collagen

Not all Collagen is the same, and when choosing a supplement, you must understand the different options available to you.

a. Hydrolyzed

Hydrolyzed Collagen, also known as Collagen Hydrolysate or Collagen peptides, has been broken down into its essential amino acids. Most supplements use Hydrolyzed Collagen because it is broken down into small bits that make for easy absorption (mixing into cold liquids).

Gelatin Collagen has been broken down from large proteins into smaller bits. It is less broken down than Hydrolyzed Collagen.

b. Undenatured

This refers to tiny bits of Type II Collagen that work by stopping the breakdown of your natural Collagen stores. This is also called Undenatured Collagen, meaning it is not broken into smaller proteins or amino acids.

Of these forms available, research shows that your body may absorb Hydrolyzed Collagen most efficiently.

Health Benefits of Collagen

1. Skin

Collagen plays a role in strengthening skin and may improve elasticity and hydration. As you age, your body produces less Collagen, leading to dry skin and the formation of wrinkles.

Taking a Collagen supplement containing 2.5 – 5 grams of Collagen for eight weeks will promote the production of other proteins that help structure your skin, including elastin and fibrillin. This can decrease skin dryness and significantly increase skin elasticity.

holding a collagen

2. Joints

Collagen helps maintain the integrity of your cartilage, the rubber-like tissue that protects your joints. As the amount of Collagen in your body decreases with age. Your risk of developing degenerative joint disorders such as Osteoarthritis increases.

Researchers have theorized that supplemental Collagen may accumulate in cartilage and stimulate your tissues to make Collagen, leading to lower inflammation, better support of your joints, and reduced pain. In one study, taking 2 grams of Collagen daily for 70 days significantly decreased joint pain.

Meanwhile, if you want to try taking a Collagen supplement for its potential pain-relieving effects. Studies suggest you should start with a daily dosage of 8 – 12 grams.

happy mature woman

3. Bones

Just as the Collagen in your body deteriorates as you age, so does bone mass. This may lead to conditions like Osteoporosis, characterized by low bone density and linked to a higher risk of bone fractures.

Consuming collagen supplements may help reduce the risk of bone disorders like Osteoporosis. They have the potential to help increase bone mineral density, or BMD, and lower levels of proteins in the blood that stimulate bone breakdown.

Collagen powder protein - Collagen Health Benefits

4. Muscles

Almost 10% of your muscle tissues are composed of Collagen. This protein is necessary to keep your muscles strong and function correctly. Studies have shown that consuming Collagen supplements increases muscle growth and strength in people with age-related muscle loss, such as sarcopenia, the loss of muscle mass that happens with age.

Collagen supplements are generally safe, relatively easy to use, and worth trying for their potential health benefits.

flexing bicep - Collagen Health Benefits

5. Cardiovascular Health

Collagen provides structure to your arteries, the blood vessels that carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body. Without enough Collagen, arteries can become weak.

Recent studies had shown that taking 16 grams of Collagen daily for six months promotes a significant reduction in measures of artery stiffness compared with before they started taking the supplement.

Collagen Protein Supplement Powder

Additional Health Benefits of Collagen

Collagen supplements may offer additional health benefits, though these have not been studied extensively and may need further research.

a. Nails

Collagen may increase the strength of your nails by preventing brittleness. Additionally, it may stimulate your nails to grow longer.

b. Gut Health

Although there is no scientific evidence to support this claim, some health practitioners promote using Collagen supplements to treat intestinal permeability or leaky gut syndrome.

c. Brain Health

Studies have yet to prove the role of Collagen supplements in brain health. However, some people have claimed noticeable mood improvement and decreased anxiety symptoms.

d. Weight Loss

People believe that taking Collagen may promote weight loss and faster metabolism. However, there's not enough research to prove this yet. Collagen is high in protein and low in calories so it may play a supporting role.

Collagen drinks - Collagen Health Benefits

e. Collagen and Cancer

Recent research studies have claimed that increasing Collagen production and protecting it from degrading could have positive results installing the invasion of cancer cells. Collagen is the major component of the tumor microenvironment and participates in cancer fibrosis.

Collagen biosynthesis (formation of chemical compounds by a living organism) can be regulated by cancer cells through mutated genes, transcription factors, signaling pathways, and receptors.

Furthermore, collagen can influence tumor cell behavior. Cancer cells reversely reshape Collagen to form a reinforcing cell-collagen loop, which gradually fosters cancer progression.

The role of Collagen is a double-edged sword in cancer. On the one hand, Collagen, cancer cells, other cells, and other matrix molecules mutually form an inter-reinforcing loop. This loop contributes to cancer development by inducing cancer cell proliferation, migration, and metastasis.

On the other hand, preclinical and clinical studies have demonstrated that Collagen may slow the growth of cancer cells to some extent under some conditions.


In summary, the association of Collagen with cancer is only partially understood, and future studies are needed to interpret detailed Collagen biological mechanisms in cancer tissue that can be applied to precisely regulate Collagen balance to achieve the maximum benefit of treatment. This new strategy, combined with other treatment modalities, can ultimately improve patient survival and quality of life.

holding pill and glass of fresh water

Healthy individuals generally consider Collagen a safe daily supplement. Most people won't experience any adverse side effects, but some have reported minor symptoms such as an unpleasant taste, being overly full, or other stomach complaints.

Collagen is generally not recommended for those at a high risk of kidney stones due to its high protein content. As well it's important to note that Collagen can be found in many foods, including fish, chicken, egg whites, citrus fruits, garlic, and white tea. A supplement might be unnecessary if you frequently consume many Collagen-rich foods daily.

Guide to Collagen

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