Ladies, we are at that age (over 40) when we start to see more fine lines on our faces, hair is thinning and getting out of a chair brings the sounds of snap, crackle and pop! One of the reasons for this is COLLAGEN or the lack of it.
Collagen is the ‘glue’ that makes up a huge percentage of our skin, bones, muscles and tendons and this vital protein decreases as we age. Around the age of 25 we start to see a natural decline in our collagen levels and women see a drastic decline after menopause.
Yah for menopause!!
The following factors will contribute to a faster collagen decline:
- High sugar consumption
But did you know that we can help lessen the decrease and help increase our collagen stores naturally??
Foods High in Collagen
There are so many foods that are known to help increase our collagen stores and I will just touch on a few important ones.
The main rule to follow is to eat clean foods high in vitamin and nutrients.
One of the main foods that is very high in collagen is animal (beef, chicken, turkey, fish) foods and one of the best ways to use animal foods to increase collagen is by using broth. Homemade broth is best when you can slow cook the leftover bones and connective tissue along with vegetables. The slow cooking pulls out the nutrients into the broth.
Ever made broth at home and put the leftovers in the fridge overnight and you take it out and it is jelly-like..That is from the collagen that has come from the bones, etc. Homemade bone broth is super easy to make. Throw the leftover carcasses into a crock pot along with some vegetables (great way to use up those scraps), add some salt and set at high for 4-5 hours. Then I usually set to low for another couple of hours. The longer you can let this cook, the better. Once done and cooled, strain and pour into mason jars to freeze.
Berries are high in vitamin C, which is an important vitamin for pre-collagen production.
Almonds are high in vitamin E, which works together with vitamin C to stimulate natural collagen production
Red vegetables such as beets, tomatoes and red peppers are high in lycopene which boosts collagen production and protects you from the sun (which mentioned earlier, the sun helps to decrease your natural collagen.)
Along with eating clean and increasing some of the collagen boosting foods, you can also take a supplement. There are so many out there right now, so it really is up to you to make the right decision on what works best for you. I have been using Organika Enhanced Collagen ( not sponsored). But in any product you choose, you want to use a hydrolyzed collagen. Hydrolyzing reduces the molecules and allows for the most efficient absorption.
For those that want to try a different way of boosting collagen, you can also try microdermabrasion – exfoliation of the top layer of dead skin cells by crystal or diamond tips. The crystals are sprayed on the the skin, then suction to remove the dead skin cells. Somewhat like a ‘skin sandblasting’, this technique has shown to increase blood flow to the skin’s surface and stimulate collagen production.
I have been taking a collagen supplement along with eating very clean for about 3 months now. I decided to try a supplement as my skin was looking tired, dehydrated and I was dealing with hormonal breakouts. So I was looking for anything to help. I will say I have noticed a hydrated look overall on my skin overall. (especially my hands and they were very wrinkly, in my opinion) and I have lessen the hormonal breakouts. I still get them, it just seems to be less.😳
I know as we age, we are always looking for that fountain of youth. This may not be the fountain but eating healthy and adding some supplements may help you find that slow drip that will lessen those fine lines and wrinkles and helps us to age gracefully as they say 🙂
For further reading – Menopause and Bone Health