In recent years, amino acids have become all the rage. They’ve raked in millions for businesses, but more important, they’ve proven to be good for you too. One such amino acid that has received accolades is collagen. Whether you’re taking a supplement as part of your regular diet, following a doctor-approved diet, or jumping on the Keto diet train, collagen supplements are an essential part of a healthy diet.

Our bodies need amino acids to function properly. They build muscles, bones, cartilage, skin, and hair, to name a few. The amino acids are varied, but the kind found in collagen is by far the most abundant throughout the body. It plays a key role in forming connective tissues and skin. It’s even more important because your body’s collagen production decreases as you age. Therefore, adding collagen to your diet is a smart idea.

Known Benefits of Collagen

– It helps to protect the brain against disease. Studies have shown that it may prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease by preventing the growth of amyloid-beta proteins—the amino acids that are known to clump together in people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

– By increasing your collagen intake, you can directly attack the amyloid-beta proteins that attack the brain’s neurons and cause Alzheimer’s.

 

– Collagen may prevent and/or help treat heart disease. In one recent study, participants were given collagen twice daily for a period of six months. The study found that there were reductions in cholesterol levels and a decrease of plaque in their arteries.

– It may help heal leaky gut syndrome, a condition in which toxic substances leak into the bloodstream instead of being funneled out of the body as they should be.

– Collagen has shown promise in easing knee and joint pain 

– as well as chronic back pain.
– It promotes skin elasticity
– and nail growth, and helps to treat or prevent brittle nails.

 

This valuable amino acid can be found in many foods including

– chia seeds
– garlic
– berries
– leafy green vegetables like kale and spinach

– eggs
– avocados and peanuts.

When choosing a collagen supplement, always consult with your healthcare provider first. Here are some tips for choosing a supplement that’s right for you: avoid flavored supplements, choose ones with easy-to-read ingredients. If you can’t pronounce them, it’s probably best to avoid them. Because the FDA doesn’t regulate collagen supplements, look for third-party certification and read reviews. Ask people you know which brand they take. Check with your doctor to see if there is a brand he or she recommends. Don’t go all-in. Buy a small bottle to see how it works for you because, as with any other supplement, you may have an unpleasant reaction. Take the recommended dose. More doesn’t necessarily mean better. Keep track of any changes, positive or negative, you may experience. They could be important.

 

By Carolina Martinez