What Are Collagen Peptides?

Collagen peptides refer to bioactive ingredients that are utilized in dietary supplements and functional foods. The proteins take part in tissue strength, tissue architecture, and cell to cell relationships. Tremendous power characterizes collagen peptides, and they are found in various tissues such as blood vessels, ligament, tendon, skin, and bone. Studies have shown that collagen peptide supplementation improves skin health and the density and structure of the dermis’ collagen network.

The word collagen originates from a Greek word for ‘glue’. The derivation is based on the fact that when collagen is heated in water, it forms a gelatin which is soluble and gummy. The gelatin formed has several applications and it can be used in the manufacture of glues. The types of collagen peptides differ in composition because of the variation in functional requirements and chemical environments. However, they have a basic structure that is comprised of three polypeptide chains which are coiled together to produce a triple helix.

Sources Of Collagen Peptides

Piscine

These collagen peptides are sourced from fish and are superior in increasing the overall collagen levels in the body and improving the health of hair, nail, skin, and bone quality. Studies have revealed that fish collagen is easily absorbed and it provides the body with type one collagen. It is also rich in glycine, hydroxyproline, and proline amino acids. Consuming fish collagen has been associated with various health benefits to different tissues, including the joints, skin, vital organs, and blood vessels.

Hydroxyproline amino acid is also a component of the collagen triple helix. Deficiency of this amino acid is associated with joint degradation. An individual that is deficient in the amino acid presents with symptoms and signs of aging. Hydroxyproline is also required for the stability of collagen. It is developed through the modification of normal proline after the collagen chain is formed. The formation of the amino acid requires the presence of vitamin C, so individuals having vitamin C deficiency often have abnormalities in collagen levels.

Bovine

Collagen peptides from cows are available at a lower cost. There are different types of bovine collagen supplements on the market due to the accessibility of bovine materials. However, the bovine collagen peptides are not as effective as the fish collagen peptides when it comes to raising the general levels of collagen in the body. They are specifically derived from the cow's skin, muscles, and bones. Bovine collagen is mainly comprised of types one and two. It is rich in glycine and proline amino acids. Bovine collagen peptides are essential for the production of creatinine, muscle growth, and the synthesis of natural collagen in the body.

Porcine

Pig collagen peptides are also available at affordable costs. The high accessibility of pig materials has seen a wide array of porcine collagen supplements introduced on the market.

Fowl

Fowl collagen peptides (usually chicken) are the most useful for supporting body cartilage because they are rich in chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine sulfate. As a result, the type 2 collagen peptide supplements are commonly sourced from chicken. Chicken collagen is not effective in boosting the overall level of collagen in the body. It is also not useful in a beauty supplement.

Eggshell Membrane Collagen

This collagen is sourced from the shells and whites of eggs. They mostly contain type one collagen. The eggshell membrane collagen provides the body with chondroitin sulfate, glucosamine sulfate, and hyaluronic acids. It also provides the body with various amino acids that are necessary for the formation of connective tissues, wound healing, and building muscle mass. This collagen is also known to reduce pain and stiffness.

Types Of Collagen Peptides

There are different types of collagen peptides which differ regarding the composition and effectiveness. As already mentioned, collagen is the most abundant substance in the human body and plays a role in the health of various tissues, including the skin, bones, and nails, among others.

Type One Collagen

This makes up 90 percent of the skin, hair, ligaments, bones, and organs. Research in the field of Dermatology has revealed that type one collagen is the best. Type one collagen has 19 amino acids which are essential to the functions and maintenance of the body tissues. They are produced by the fibroblasts and osteoblasts cells. The amino acids found in this type of collagen include alanine, proline, hydroxyproline, and glycine. Studies suggest that glycine supplementation is crucial for an ideal metabolic process in the body. The proline amino acid is essential for the function of the joints and tendons. Hydroxyproline plays a role in ensuring the stability of collagen and alanine is crucial for protein biosynthesis.

Type Two Collagen

This type of collagen is produced by chondrocytes. The term chondrocytes refers to the non-cellular matrix of cartilage. It is a component of the joint cartilage. Oral ingestion of this collagen has been suggested to lower inflammation that is observed in individuals with osteoarthritis and rheumatism. This collagen is available in hydrolyzed form to increase its absorption. The best quality of collagen type two is derived from the chicken sternum and has several benefits for the joints and cartilage. The properties of type two collagen include:

a. The presence of peptides which act as building blocks for the production of natural collagen in the body.

b. The presence of Chondroitin, known to promote the body's inflammatory response; as a result, the enzymatic breakdown of cartilage is blocked.

c. The collagen has hyaluronic acid that plays a role in the synthesis of synovial fluid that is required for the lubrication of the joints.

d. Type two collagen redirects the body’s immune response that targets the breakdown of cartilage.

e. Type two collagen is also specific to the reproduction, function, and maintenance of the cartilage tissue in the body.

f. This collagen is gluten-free and hence safe for individuals that are gluten-intolerant. It is also dairy-free and non-GMO.

g. It also has no side effects, and it is highly tolerable by most people.

Type Three Collagen

This is a fibrillary collagen that is found in various connective tissues such as lung, skin, intestine, and the vascular system. Type three collagen is typically found in association with type one collagen. The mutations of its genes result in various conditions, including Type four Ehlers-Danlos syndrome and aneurysms associated with the aorta and arteries. The Ehlers-Danlos syndrome is genetically acquired and causes the sufferer to have fragile blood vessels and skin tissues. The condition results from the mutation of the COL3A1 gene that codes for type 3 procollagen.

The type three collagen plays a crucial role in fibrillogenesis. The process is necessary for the development of various organs, including the cardiovascular system, skin, and the intestine. The deficiency of this collagen results in poor development and function of these organs. Type three collagen is also important in the regulation of type one collagen fibrillogenesis. Studies suggest that type three collagen regulates the diameter of the type one collagen fibrils. The regulatory mechanism is important in meeting the various physiological requirements of the different tissues in the body.

Type Four Collagen

Type four collagen is necessary for the development of the basal lamina. The basal lamina is found in endothelial cells. They form tissues that surround muscles, organs, and fats. The basal lamina are required in the body for the proper function of the blood vessels and nerves. They line the majority of the digestive system and the respiratory surfaces. The basal lamina are also located between the top layer of tissue and its deepest layer. They provide cushion or padding for the tissue that is located above it.

Type Five Collagen

Type five collagen peptides are required for the development of the surface of cells and the hair strands. They are also required for the development of the tissues that are found in the placenta.

Type Ten Collagen

This collagen is important for the formation of bone and the articular cartilage. Type ten Collagen also plays a role in endochondral ossification. Studies have revealed that type ten collagen is important for bone healing and synovial joint repair.

Benefits Of Collagen Peptides

1. Collagen Improves The Health Of Skin And Hair

As human’s age, there is a decline in collagen production in the body. Individuals present with fragile skin, wrinkles, and less elasticity. The supplementation of the body with collagen helps the skin to look firmer and smoother. Collagen promotes the renewal of skin cells and the repair of the damaged ones. A study that was investigating the antiaging properties of collagen found that administration of collagen hydrolysate to women who were aged between 35 and 55 years improved the skin moisture, elasticity, and transepidermal water loss. It also improves the skin’s smoothness and made it less rough.

Collagen has also been found to reduce cellulite and stress marks. The loss of skin elasticity leads to a more visible cellulite. The cellulite becomes evident because the skin is thin. Improvement of the skin elasticity through collagen peptides helps in reducing dimpling on the skin.

2. Collagen Reduces Joint Pains And Degeneration

Loss of collagen is associated with stiffness and pain in the joints. The pain and stiffness are a result of an effect on the tendons and ligaments which start moving with less ease. The patient will present with swollen joints that lead to stiffness.

The gel-like and smooth structure of collagen holds the bones together, allowing them to glide and move without pain. A recent study has also suggested that collagen can be used in the management of joint disorders such as osteoarthritis.

Scientists at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston revealed that collagen supplementation helps patients who have rheumatoid arthritis. Collagen reduces symptoms by reducing the swelling in the tender joints. A study published in the International Journal of Medical Sciences revealed that patients with osteoarthritis joint pain administered with collagen experienced significant improvements in their daily activities such as walking up the stairs and sleeping. The patients also showed an improvement in their quality of life.

3. Collagen Helps In Weight Loss

Studies have shown that the intake of collagen improves the body’s metabolic process while also reducing appetite. A study cited a 20 percent reduction of food consumption after breakfast when collagen peptides are administered at this time.

The study also suggested that collagen peptides are 40 percent more satiating than any other protein supplements such as whey, casein, and soy. Collagen also boosts the metabolic process due to the presence of glycine amino acid. Glycine is known to deliver the blood sugar to the tissues and, in turn, boost the energy levels in the body.

4. Collagen Improves The Health Of Nails, Hair, And Teeth

The collagen protein is a building block of the fingernails, teeth, and hair. Its deficiency results in peeling and splitting of the nails. The addition of collagen into a diet regimen can help in keeping the nails strong. Supplementation of the body with collagen is also known to prevent hair loss. A study published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology recently explained the significant relationship between the extracellular matrix and the process of follicle hair regeneration. The study suggested that collagen could be a potent therapeutic agent for hair loss and skin-related diseases.

5. Detoxification Of The Liver

Collagen is extremely helpful when it comes to the detoxification of the body of harmful substances. The intake of collagen is known to improve blood flow and the functioning of the heart. Glycine amino acid minimizes damage to the liver when it absorbs foreign substances for a breakdown. The easiest way to detoxify the liver is through bone broth. Researchers suggest that glycine can be used in the management of alcohol-induced liver damage. It can also be utilized in the management of other forms of liver injury.

6. Improves Cardiovascular Health

The amino acid proline found in collagen plays a major role in improving cardiovascular health. The amino acid helps in shrinking the fat in the arterial blood vessels, hence minimizing the accumulation of fats. Proline also plays a major role in the regulation of blood pressure. The amino acid prevents the hardening of the arteries by getting rid of dangerous plaque build-up.

Collagen Peptides Conclusion

The best ways of improving the intake of collagen are using the broth protein in recipes or drinking the real bone broth. One can also choose to take collagen supplements. The supplements, such as collagen protein powder, boost the level of collagen intake. The supplements can be taken in soups, smoothies, or even baked goods. During the intake of collagen supplements, it is advisable to consider the various factors that support the formation and utilization of collagen. They include vitamin C, copper, and proline.

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