H ealthy beautiful skin, gleaning hair and strong nails are a checklist for most. The common denominator within this check list is that they all require in part collagen as one of the main building blocks alongside keratin and elastin.
Collagen is abundant throughout our body and its main function is to support the structure and firmness of our dermis which in turn supports our epidermis. This resilient triple helix structure is a building block for our body’s internal framework reaching from our skin, internal organs and cartilage.
Sometimes we need a little extra help. This article will help to illustrate healthy life choices as well as supplements to look out for that can assist in maintaining a healthy supple glow to your skin, hair and for stronger nails.
First, it is important to know about the inner construction of your body’s unique terrain through your health history. Might you be missing important nutrients from your diet because of a lack of diversity in food options? Perhaps you are eating a rounded diet, but you may be at risk for malabsorption of nutrients that act as co-factors for healthy collagen production Other lifestyle and dietary measures to asses are smoking, high carb diets and stress that can lead to nutrient depletion and higher levels of internal acidity which fast track compromised cellular health. This leads to weakened cellular structure and accelerated degeneration of skin and stunts hair and nail growth.
Having a deeper understanding of the following points may help shift our direction towards our goals of supporting healthy collagen maintenance throughout one’s systems.
One’s cellular infrastructure due to hereditary factors may be predisposed to weaker joints, hair skin and nails based on gut conditions such as “leaky gut” that may lead one to be predisposed to be malnourished though potentially well fed. Natural supportive digestive measures can be assessed to assist one’s unique needs.
Research Acid/Alkaline based diets to ensure your body is not battling acidity rather than focusing on keeping your collagen healthy. Consume healthy oils and alkalizing greens while refraining from acid rich grains and carb-based foods. Healthy oils rich in omega 3s can be obtained from vegetable sources such as; hemp, flax, chia. If you are including fish in your diet ensure that it is sustainably and ethically wild caught fish such as salmon or haddock for richOmega 3 levels. Farmed fish are not ideal due to unethical and unnatural and polluting farming methods that leave the fish nutrient void.
Battling the effects of smoking forces one’s body to stretch its free radicals fighting capabilities beyond what we were designed to keep up with. Our fast paced, high stress society asks our bodies to process toxins at an ever increasing and alarming rate. During this battle for health, your body will also be burning through higher levels of vitamin C, and other Antioxidants which are necessary co-factors for proper collagen production and maintenance.
Recent clinical trials support findings that ingesting collagen peptides can assist your skin to be more resilient to free radical damage.1 There is hope for support within another study with preliminary findings stating that through oral supplementation of collagen wound healing, skin elasticity and hydration along with dermal collagen density were improved.2
Additional supportive measures such proper sun care hygiene and as including alkalizing superfoods or supplements such as; concentrated kale powders, moringa, chlorella and spirulina. As well antioxidant rich concentrated nutritives such as; green tea, berries and Vitamin C can help to ensure a strong foundational support system to combat accelerated collagen deterioration.3
If you feel you may have additional stress and dietary factors that may be impeding your internal collagen production and retention, speaking with a Natural Health Care Practitioner such as a Nutritionist or Naturopath to review your symptoms may shed some light on basic supportive measures for increased nutrient absorption and collagen supportive supplements.
Love the skin you’re in by taking time to asses your needs for a healthy glow in life, from the inside out!
1. Hyun-Jun Lee, Hye-Lim Jang, Dong-Kyu Ahn, Hun-Jung Kim, Hee Young Jeon, Dae Bang Seo, Ji-Hae Lee, Jin Kyu Choi & Seok-Seong Kang (2019) Orally administered collagen peptide protects against UVB-induced skin aging through the absorption of dipeptide forms, Gly-Pro and Pro-Hyp, Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry, DOI: 10.1080/09168451.2019.1580559
2. D. Choi, Franchesca & T. Sung, Calvin & L.W. Juhasz, Margit & Atanaskova Mesinkovsk, Natasha. (2019). Oral Collagen Supplementation: A Systematic Review of Dermatological Applications. Journal of drugs in dermatology : JDD. 18. 9-16.
3. Allison Tannis MS, Feed Your Skin, Starve Your Wrinkles: Eat Your Way to Firmer, More Beautiful Skin with the 100 Best Anti-Aging Foods, 2009, ISBN-10: 1592333427