As we get older our bodies make less collagen which causes sagging skin, wrinkles, weak joints, thinner hair and fragile bones. Imagine Collagen is the structural protein that provides framework to our cells, holding everything together and in place, especially your skin and the connective tissues in your joints.
If you don’t get eat enough vitamins and minerals, the body makes collagen which makes you appear older, and you can age faster. And your body can age at a faster rate Eating junk foods, alcoholic drinks, sugar, smoking and stress can also damage your collagen and weaken your body. Fortunately, There are certain vitamins that you can consume to help boost collagen production, to keep your skin elastic and youthful, And your joints strong and healthy.
1. Collagen Peptides
The first item on my list is collagen peptides You can take 1-2 scoops of collagen powder every day to boost collagen production in your body. This tasteless, odourless powder provides all 19 amino acids which the body uses as raw material for the collagen in your skin, joints, tissues, hair etc… You can drink this in a glass of water, blend it into a smoothie, or add it to your soups as it is not damaged by heat. You can also get collagen into your diet by eating the skin and small bones of fish, like sardines, anchovies and salmon, or by consuming bone broth or real gelatin.
2. Vitamin C Complex
Secondly is the most important vitamin for boosting collagen production, is Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an antioxidant complex that you must consume daily if you want to have a youthful and healthy body. Some of the richest sources being REAL Vitamin C comes from raw fruits and vegetables, such as berries, bell peppers, leafy greens, kale, cabbage and sauerkraut.
This helps to turn the raw amino acids that you eat into collagen for your skin and connective tissues. It also protects your skin, and body from oxidation and the damaging effects of aging. Please note I recommend as these are not the true form of vitamin c. Avoid over the counter ‘ascorbic acid’ supplements as these are not true Vitamin C. If you are looking to take a dietary supplement, acerola cherry powder is the best option. Along with other whole fruit powders.
3. Retinol (Vitamin A)
When it comes to nourishing the skin and building collagen, retinol is one of the most important nutrients. Retinol is the active form of Vitamin A found in egg yolks, butter, cheese, cod liver oil and organ meats. It’s known as the anti-aging nutrient because it activates genes that trigger collagen synthesis. It also clears up acne, skin irritation, dandruff and sinus problems because it regulates oil production on the outer and inner skin of the body. Taking 1 teaspoon of raw virgin cod liver oil daily is the best way to nourish your body with active Vitamin A. You can also get the precursor to Vitamin A from leafy greens and vegetables, (beta carotene).
Did you know that every single cell in your body contains CoQ10?
It’s an extremely powerful antioxidant that protects your trillions of cell membranes from oxidative damage, having an anti-aging effect. You can boost CoQ10 by taking a daily supplement of Ubiquinol, or consume organ meats regularly like liver, kidney, heart etc… Boosting your CoQ10 helps to protect against collagen loss. It prevents cellulite and sagging muscles, Renews anti-aging hormones like growth hormone, And helps your cells produce more ATP and energy, to keep you feeling fit, energised and healthy.
5. Vitamin E
Vitamin E is fat soluble nutrient found in avocados, sunflower seeds, EVOO and almonds. This is one of the most important anti-aging nutrients, because it helps to prevent hormonal imbalances that come with age. Vitamin E protects against collagen loss after the menopause in women and aging men, by boosting the output of pituitary hormones. It’s also one of the most important antioxidant vitamins for the skin, helping to prevent wrinkles and retain youthful and moisturised skin. Although it’s important to get this from healthy foods, If you wish to take a supplement, tocotrienols from annatto are the highest quality.
Copper is an overlooked yet extremely important mineral which your body needs to make collagen. It actually works with Vitamin C to boost collagen and elastin in your skin, to protect the structure of your skin cells, protecting against sun damage and pollutants. Copper is needed to protect the connective tissues in your joints like tendons, cartilage and also the discs in your lower back. Studies show that getting lots of this in your diet can also reduce greying of the hair. You can get copper by eating organ meats, oysters, shellfish and shitake mushrooms. It’s also found as tyrosinase in foods that contain vitamin C.
Astaxanthin is a carotenoid which gives the vibrant red colour to Salmon, Krill and Shrimp. With 6000x more antioxidant power than Vitamin C, astaxanthin is one of the best anti-aging nutrients in the world. The best natural supplement containing this is arctic krill oil capsules. Other fish oils tend to go rancid very easily, however the red astaxanthin in krill oil protects the integrity of the oil, giving it a long shelf life. Taking this improves blood flow, enhances collagen production, and prevents the skin from drying out due to the omega 3-s.
Whenever you sustain an injury, have an illness or inflammation your body uses up its zinc stores to try and heal you. However, zinc is needed as a co-enzyme to make and remodel collagen. As we age, we tend to suffer with lots of ailments which depletes zinc, and therefore makes our collagen weaker. You can load up on zinc by eating crab meat, oysters, mussels, shrimp and pumpkin seeds to help improve collagen production. The best supplement would be 30mg of Zinc chelate or zinc glycinate. As you can see there are a range of powerful nutrients and vitamins that you can use to boost collagen and protect your body against sagging skin, aging and collagen loss.
Many of these nutrients are already in foods that you regularly consume, so you can start by eating more of these that we have shared in today’s article.