How to Find the Best Collagen Supplement: What to Know Before You Buy
12 minute read
Collagen has become a big buzzword lately, because of the fact that more and more people are using collagen to help with a variety of health issues. Still, many people are not aware of the specifics behind this material, or how it can impact human health.
Collagen is often associated with skin, but it can also be used to help with joints, inflammation, and even the bacterial balance of your digestive system.
Before you consider adding collagen to your health regimen, it’s important to know the basic facts about collagen.
What Is Collagen?
Collagen is a compound made up of a wide variety of amino acids. It comes in two types, Type I and Type II.
Type I collagen is the most common and most abundant in the human body. It is present in scar tissue, tendons, ligaments, skin, and bones.
Type II collagen is the collagen that preserves joint function and protects them from damage. Both types of collagen are important to your body’s overall function, but Type II collagen is more powerful if you’re trying to supplement with additional collagen.
How Is Collagen Used?
Collagen is used for a variety of different purposes. It can help with skin elasticity and wound healing, as well as joint health and gut bacteria balance. Some collagen can even improve the appearance of hair and nails.
Collagen is typically extracted from animal tissue, like chicken and fish, and then made into a powder or pills, so it can be easily consumed.
Collagen Vs. Glucosamine and Chondroitin
While glucosamine and chondroitin are also derived from natural substances in joint cartilage and have been linked to improved joint health, Type II undenatured collagen has been shown in clinical studies to produce more effective results.
Collagen consistently outperformed glucosamine and chondroitin in treating joint pain. As this type of collagen requires only a small dose for maximum results, it is also an ideal candidate for inclusion in multi-ingredient supplements.
This allows the best collagen supplements to include other ingredients, like curcumin and boswellia serrata, to provide multiple ways of relieving pain and reducing inflammation.
Why Is Collagen Such an Important Supplement?
Collagen has many important health properties, which can provide incredible benefits if consumed regularly in the right doses. Here are some of the benefits collagen can provide:
Improved Joint Function
Perhaps the most important and most noticeable benefit that collagen can provide is boosted joint health. Your joints require ample amounts of collagen to function properly.
As an essential building block for joint support, when you don’t have enough collagen in the right levels, it can contribute to wear and tear and make your joints stiffer or more painful.
Collagen can help restore joints to their proper order, which is a huge help for anyone trying to maintain an active lifestyle. Collagen can help protect joints against damage, which is especially useful for people who are aging and want to make sure their joints can maintain optimal function.
Some joint discomfort is obvious, such as when you have a sore knee or you experience arthritis in your wrist. But your body is actually made up of far more joints that are smaller and may not come to mind right off the bat.
Still, every joint in your body is important, as they all contribute to your range of motion and comfort. Even if you don’t notice pain in your knees or wrists, it can still be joint-related.
For example, back pain can be considered a type of joint pain, as a lack of collagen can cause friction between your vertebrates, which can cause discomfort ranging from mild to severe.
Collagen can help improve the function of all your joints, not just the big ones like elbows and knees.
Helps Reduce Inflammation
Collagen is also a powerful inflammation fighter, which is one of the main reasons why it’s such a powerful overall health booster. Inflammation is responsible for a wide range of issues, including many serious illnesses and other health conditions.
Keeping inflammation at bay is essential to maintaining good health, especially the older you get. As the human body ages, inflammation is more likely, as it is often an immune response that can be triggered by a wide variety of factors.
The amino acids in collagen help protect your body against inflammation, which is why it’s useful to anyone looking to improve their overall health.
Improves Gut Bacteria Balance
One of the other ways that collagen can help improve health is by assisting in regulating the balance of your gut bacteria. People with imbalanced gut bacteria have been shown to have lower collagen levels, so it’s important to keep collagen at the optimum amount for your gut health.
Gut bacteria are responsible for more areas of your health than you may realize. The “gut microbiome,” as it’s often called, has been linked to digestive health, mental clarity, energy levels, and even mood regulation.
The gut contains both “good” and “bad” bacteria, which is natural, but it’s important to keep them at the right balance. When bad bacteria begin to overtake the good, it can lead to issues like digestive distress, bloating, cramps, and even junk food cravings.
Because the gut bacteria are so essential to so many different areas of health, making sure that they are at the right balance is crucial, and collagen can help.
Some collagen has been shown to help reduce the appearance of skin aging and help protect your skin against various threats. The skin is the largest organ of the body, but it often goes overlooked when considering overall health.
The truth is, the skin is just as important to your health as many of your other organs, and so it’s equally crucial to keep your skin health in good order. Collagen can help protect your skin from wear and tear, and it can even help reduce the appearance of fine lines or wrinkles.
Just as collagen helps with joints and tendons, it can also help keep your muscles strong. Collagen is an important building block of the muscular structure, and if you don’t have enough, it can cause your muscles to get weaker and lose their effectiveness.
This is especially true the older you get, as the effects of aging can leave your muscles vulnerable to deteriorating faster. To keep this from happening, collagen could be an effective helper.
Joints, muscles, and bones all work together, and they need collagen to function optimally. Sore, achy muscles could be the result of depleted collagen levels.
As mentioned above, collagen helps with almost all elements of joint and muscle function, and this includes ligaments. Ligaments are an important building block of your body, as they help ensure that you maintain the right level of mobility.
If you struggle with mobility, which is common as people get older, it could be because your body isn’t producing collagen at the rate that it should. One of the ways you can take steps to reverse this troubling trend is by adding collagen to your daily health routine.
Can Help With Joint Pain
In addition to helping maintain proper joint function, collagen can actually reduce the friction between joints, which can ease the pain.
Joint pain and stiffness are all too common, especially the older you get. That’s because when you age, your body naturally produces less collagen than it did when you were younger. This is perfectly natural, but it can come with some negative side effects, including joint pain.
If you struggle with this issue regularly, it can affect your ability to participate in certain activities or maintain an active lifestyle, which can lead to even worse health effects.
Getting daily exercise is one of the most important things you can do for your health, no matter your age. And reducing your joint pain is a big step towards making exercise a part of your daily routine.
Best Way to Get It
As mentioned earlier, your body naturally produces collagen, but this production declines with age. Yes, the most optimal way to get collagen into your system is for your body to make it on its own, but, unfortunately, the human body cannot always keep up with the demands it needs.
To help boost collagen levels, it’s a good idea to consider a collagen supplement, which can be an easy addition to your routine that can have noticeable results.
Most collagen used in supplement form comes from animal sources, and if you use the right kind, it can impact your health in a positive way.
Things to Look for in a Collagen Supplement
But what is the right kind of collagen to buy? It’s important to make sure you get the best, most effective collagen supplement.
As explained, there are two main types of collagen: Type I and Type II. When looking for a fast-acting joint supplement, you need to make sure it contains Type II collagen.
But it’s not just that simple. There are variations within certain forms of Type II collagen, so it’s important to make sure you get the best one that can actually impact your health the most.
Undenatured Type II Collagen
Within the category of Type II collagen, there are actually two sub-categories: Denatured and Undenatured Type II collagen.
| Related: Why Using Collagen That Is Undenatured Is Essential |
The kind that is most beneficial to the body is undenatured. This word refers to the process that the collagen undergoes when it is prepared into supplement form.
Unfortunately, many commercial producers of collagen use chemicals and heat to alter the collagen’s basic form. That causes the proteins to break down and modify, which is called “denaturing.” This is precisely the process you want to avoid, as it strips the collagen of many of its beneficial properties.
So if you do decide to go the route of adding a collagen supplement to your health routine, pay close attention to the label and make sure it is made with Undenatured Type II Collagen (also known as UC-II).
UC-II is the more potent and more effective form of collagen, so you can be sure you’re getting the results you want.
The Bottom Line
Collagen can be extremely useful, especially for people struggling with joint issues, which unfortunately get worse and worse as we age. Your joints are an especially crucial part of your overall health.
Having uncomfortable joints can affect your ability to do even the most basic tasks, not to mention more strenuous activities such as running, hiking, or riding a bike. These are all things that are not only enjoyable, but they can also help boost your health.
When you can’t function at an optimal level, it can drag down your entire health, and it can cause you to suffer from fatigue or low energy as well.
It’s a slippery slope if you allow joint issues to go unattended, and taking a collagen supplement like EasyFlex could be a great solution for this problem.