There’s been a bit of buzz around lately about Collagen.  It’s popping up everywhere – in your skin creams, in snack bars, and added to smoothies.  But what is the benefit?

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body.  It’s in your muscles, skin, blood, bones, cartilage and ligaments.  It is a complex protein which is made up of 19 amino acids!

So what is collagen good for?  In our body it:

  • promotes skin elasticity
  • holds together your bones and muscles
  • protects your organs
  • provides structure to joints and tendons

The good news is that your body produces collagen on a regular basis. But, it does slow down with age. Other lifestyle habits that can bring collagen production to a screeching halt include smoking, sun exposure, and an unhealthy diet. Some health conditions may also deplete your collagen storage. And without this important building block, you may start to see wrinkles and sagging skin, or even experience joint pain.

Adding collagen to your diet:

1. May ease joint pain
As your cartilage weakens and deteriorates with age, you may start to feel stiff, achy joints. It’s possible that upping your collagen intake may help reduce joint pain and alleviate symptoms of arthritis.

2. May reverse the effects of skin aging
One of the most well-known benefits of collagen is its ability to promote glowing, vibrant skin. This essential protein provides elasticity to the skin, helping it to appear more youthful and healthy.

3. Helps build muscle and burn fat
Collagen is a major component of muscle tissue, so it should come as no surprise that it can have a big impact when it comes to building muscle mass. Plus, collagen also contains a concentrated amount of glycine, an amino acid involved in the synthesis of creatine. This can provide muscles with the fuel needed to power through your workout.

4. May reduce cellulite
Besides keeping your skin healthy and glowing, collagen may also help improve the appearance of stubborn cellulite. Cellulite is when the layer of fat under the skin pushes up against the connective tissue, creating a dimpled or lumpy appearance on the skin.

5. May improve digestive health
Collagen is in the gut’s connective tissue and can help support and strengthen the protective lining of your digestive tract. This is critically important because alterations in the barrier function of your intestine, also known as leaky gut syndrome, can allow particles to pass into the bloodstream. This may result in inflammation.

Adding collagen to your diet is really easy.  You can buy it in powdered form.  It’s as simple as adding a teaspoon to your morning tea or coffee, or sprinkled over food.  It is soluble and doesn’t have a taste.