Collagen is a protein that your body produces. It performs a number of important functions, including building skin, bones and muscles, tendons and ligaments, and aiding in blood clotting. In recent years, it has become popular as an ingredient in dietary supplements and cosmetics, intended to provide firmness to the skin and shine to the hair and generally anti-aging. One of the most visible effects of a lack of collagen, which our bodies produce less and less of as we age, is skin laxity.
There are several scientifically proven ways to help your body produce this vital protein. The whole process happens thanks to two amino acids, glycine and proline, which use vitamin C to come together. So you can start by supplementing with this vitamin or eating more foods rich in it. These are mainly citrus fruits, but also peppers, broccoli or strawberries. Proline is found in egg whites, dairy products and mushrooms, among others. Glycine will be supplemented by eating products with gelatin and proteins. Your body needs various proteins, the sources of which are mainly meat, but also dairy products, legumes, lentils and tofu. So also people on vegetarian and vegan diets can ensure a constant access to proteins.
Used directly on the skin can be effective cosmetics with aloe vera, algae, ginseng, vitamin C and hyaluronic acid. A serum with one of the above as the main ingredient will help the body work from the outside in.
What to do to avoid damaging your collagen? First of all, avoid ultraviolet radiation. That’s why it’s so important to protect yourself from the sun with sunscreen every day. Another step is to limit sugar in your diet and smoking, which hinders the body’s ability to produce collagen, leading to faster wrinkles.
Consumption of any collagen supplements and supplementation of vitamin deficiencies should be consulted with your doctor beforehand.
Read also: 7 tips to enjoy radiant skin
Main photo: Noah Buscher/ unsplah.com