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Is your skin wrinkled, dull, or dry? Support collagen production.

Is your skin wrinkled, dull, or dry? Support collagen production.
By BioCare 2 months ago 3309 Views

Is your skin wrinkled, dull, or thin, perhaps with poor healing, easy bruising or signs of ageing? You might need to support your collagen production.

Skin is our main external barrier that protects us from the world outside – infections, trauma, sun (UVA) damage, or toxins. Healthy skin needs the right balance of strength and suppleness, provided by collagen, elastin, hyaluronic acid, and antioxidants.

What is collagen and what does it do?

Collagen is a type of protein that makes up to 35% of all body protein and is a key component of our connective tissue. It is the most widely distributed tissue in the body, which binds, holds, supports and strengthens other body tissues, as well as insulating and protecting the organs. It makes up our ligaments, tendons, skin, joints, cartilage, bone and even the gut lining, blood vessels and our teeth! It is therefore absolutely vital to health and proper integrity and function of ALL body tissues and organs.

Our body produces collagen by breaking down dietary protein into amino acids, which are then used as building blocks to form long, robust structures. Nutrient cofactors, including vitamin C, are required to help with collagen formation.

There are multiple types of collagen found within the body, but the predominant forms are types 1, 2 and 3 and they all have different functions. For example, type 1 collagen is more structurally dense and supportive and is found in things like bone and teeth, whereas type 2 is found in cartilage. Type 1 collagen is the most abundant in our body and when taken in supplements, it can be converted into other types if needed.

Our skin is the largest structural organ in the body and covers up to an incredible 2m2 of our body’s surface. Collagen is a critical component of skin health and so poor production or synthesis, can result in poor skin quality such as wrinkles, sagginess, and poor skin healing after burns/cuts.

What can affect collagen production and breakdown?

There are many factors that can affect how we produce and breakdown collagen. Unfortunately, collagen production can reduce as we age and so is why sore joints, fractures and poorer skin quality is more common the older we get. Protein contains the amino acids the body needs to make collagen so if there is inadequate dietary intake, the body will not have enough to produce collagen. This is the same for cofactors including vitamin C needed to form collagen.

A damaged skin surface from repeated sunburn, exposure to UVA rays, or skin contact with chemicals e.g. through cleaning products or skincare products, can impair the body’s ability to produce collagen. Similarly, ingestion of chemicals through exposure to cleaning products, mould, toxins and cigarette smoke can also damage the cells responsible for the production and breakdown of collagen.

Hormones such as oestrogen, have a direct influence on collagen production and changes after menopause due to declining levels of oestrogen, result in the loss of about 30% of skin collagen. Women may notice as they transition through the menopause that their skin feels less plump, thinner and with darker under eye circles.

Inflammation caused by autoimmune conditions, thyroid disorders, stress and diets high in inflammatory foods such as sugar and alcohol, can damage cells involved in collagen production, meaning we do not produce enough or as efficiently as our body requires.

Although we can buy collagen in powders or supplements, it is not guaranteed that it will be used properly in the body. Collagen is a large molecule and it gets broken down in the stomach, after which point it is less useful, so it’s important to get the right type of collagen, with proven benefits. Marine Collagen displays high resemblance to human collagen and is therefore easily absorbed through the gut wall and quickly delivered to the target tissues.

Common signs of weak connective tissue and decreased collagen synthesis:

  • Decreased skin elasticity, sagging, wrinkles, easy bruising
  • Poor nail and hair health
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Joint problems such as stiffness
  • Frequent sport injuries e.g. torn ligaments and stress fractures
  • Broken facial capillaries - so called ‘spider veins
  • Intestinal permeability, aka ‘leaky gut’

What you can do?

So, how can we support our collagen production and synthesis to support our connective tissue and improve our skin appearance? How can taking collagen alongside vitamins and other nutrients in supplements help?

The key to supporting your collagen synthesis is to provide your body with the necessary building blocks, by managing your diet and including the necessary nutrients. Managing stress and inflammation is also critical to help maintain the health of the cells involved in collagen production.

Below you’ll find some useful tips on supporting your collagen production for your skin health.

Lifestyle Recommendations

  • Regular exercise is important for encouraging fibroblast function, which are connective tissue cells that stimulate collagen production.
  • Expose yourself to sunlight to stimulate Vitamin D synthesis, which is important in modulating inflammation and skin health. Do this in 10-15 minute intervals, seeking shade in between, ensuring to use an SPF 30 or higher to prevent burning.
  • Reduce your exposure to environmental toxins by eating more organic food, avoiding plastic, and using natural skincare and cleaning products. Wear protective clothing/layers if dealing with harsh chemicals.
  • Reduce stress and inflammation in the body by ensuring a good evening and sleep routine, incorporating mindful moments into your day and exposing yourself to nature.

Dietary Recommendations

  • Consume protein on a daily basis, ideally eating a portion per meal such as lean meat, fish, lentils, legumes, beans, pulses, nuts & seeds (including ground and nut butters).
  • Ensure you are keeping yourself hydrated by drinking 1.5L water a day. Reduce your intake of caffeine and opt for herbal teas/flavoured waters.
  • Include plenty of colourful fruits and vegetables in your diet in increase your nutrient intake that act as co-factors for collagen and to increase antioxidant intake which helps prevent degradation of collagen.
  • Eat foods containing good omega-3 fatty acids to help support the skin barrier and reduce inflammation that could damage skin cells.
  • Reduce consumption of foods and drinks that can promote inflammation e.g. gluten, dairy, sugar, alcohol, caffeine.
  • Optimise your digestion to ensure you are effectively absorbing nutrients needed for collagen formation. Consume fermented foods such as kefir, kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha, to support your gut microbiome and bitter foods including apple cider vinegar, rocket, radishes and artichoke to help with the production of stomach acid.

Supplement Recommendations

Collagen Complex

Our Collagen Complex is a unique combination of powerful nutrients including collagen, hyaluronic acid nucleotides and antioxidants for skin, joint and bone support:

  • Effective Uses the superior form of type 1 marine collagen with hyaluronic acid & vitamin C for skin, joint & bone support. Our collagen is easily absorbed & rapidly transported into the bloodstream, quickly reaching the target tissues
  • AdvancedNucleotides are the building blocks of our DNA, especially needed for the fast-replicating cells of connective tissue
  • Specific solution – One of our edited range of go-to specific solution products for your health concerns
  • ComprehensiveAlso includes a rich mix of antioxidants and flavonoids including vitamin C, zinc, hesperidin, rutin and rosehip powder
  • Optimum support – Vitamin C supports collagen formation for heathy skin and bones, and protects cells from oxidative stress. Zinc contributes to normal DNA and protein synthesis
  • No unnecessary additives
  • Environmentally friendly – Recyclable packaging
  • 30 days’ supply at 2 capsules per day

Prefer something vegan or in a powder form? Try our Vitamin C Rosehip Complex with zinc, vitamin C for skin support, alongside rutin, hesperidin, rosehip:

Vitamin C Rosehip Complex

https://www.biocare.co.uk/vitamin-c-rosehip-complex-150g-powder

  • Vitamin C with flavonoids and berry extracts in a convenient powder form, for immune, energy and collagen support
  • Optimum support - Providing 1g of vitamin C per daily dose with flavonoids rutin, hesperidin, bilberry, rosehip and minerals such as zinc and manganese
  • Advanced - Rosehip has traditionally been used as a nutrient dense and therapeutic food. It is a rich source of vitamin C, B vitamins, micronutrients, and phytochemicals
  • Flexible - only use what you need, easily mixed into liquids
  • No unnecessary additives
  • Environmentally friendlyRecyclable packaging
  • Suitable for vegetarians and vegans
  • 30 days’ supply at 5 grams per day