Top 4 Collagen Rich Foods
Collagen is one of the most abundant proteins in the body. You can find it on your joints, skin, bones, and tendons.
As we get older, the amount of collagen our body produces decreases. Research shows that your collagen production declines by 1.0% – 1.5% every year.
Certain foods, like bone broth, can stimulate collagen production, resulting in young-looking skin and reducing the risk of joint pains.
In this article, we’ll talk about those foods that can boost collagen production, whether because they supply a natural form of collagen or help your body produce collagen internally.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is a protein, and like other proteins, they are made up of amino acids. To produce collagen, three primary amino acids must be consumed: hydroxyproline, glycine, and lysine.
The importance of collagen relies upon its structural benefits. In other words, it is often called the building blocks for your ligaments, tendons, skin, and joints.
As mentioned before, as we age, the collagen supply reduces. This can lead to increased joint pain, and most importantly, it can lead to your skin losing some of its elasticity. That is when you start noticing more wrinkles appearing on your skin.
While more research is needed on collagen intake and the relationship between the appearance of your skin, including foods that promote collagen production can aid in decreasing the signs of aging.
Food To Help Boost Collagen
1. Bone Broth
Bone broth is one of the top foods for consuming foods high in collagen.
You obtain bone broth when you simmer bones from different sources to create a broth.
There are several advantages to consuming one broth.
Different form. You can find it in different forms, like powdered, frozen, or natural.
Low in calories. It won’t jeopardize your nutritional goals when consuming it.
Homemade. You can make it at home, allowing you to save money.
Nutrient-dense. It is packed with vitamins and minerals like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and potassium.
If you are purchasing bone broth from a store, be careful with the sodium content. In some cases, spices, herbs, and sodium get added to the mix to boost the flavor.
Make sure to choose a bone broth with less than 150 mg of sodium per serving to be considered low in sodium.
Another great source of collage is seafood.
You can obtain a lot of collagen from the skin, bones, and ligaments. So, if you are trying to increase your collagen intake, making bone fish soup can be very helpful.
If you are not keen on the idea, you can cook the skin to make it crispy.
For example, one of my favorite things to do with salmon skin is to marinate it with lemon, soy sauce, garlic, and ginger. I add a few drops of sesame oil and place them on the air fryer. This creates a crunchy food I typically add to my salads.
Sardines are another top seafood choice when you want to increase your collagen. Since they are easier to consume whole, you get collagen from the skin, ligaments, and bones.
Berries don’t have any protein, meaning they don’t have any collagen.
However, vitamin C plays a crucial role in collagen production since you need this vitamin to help produce collagen.
Including high vitamin C foods along with collagen can help increase its absorption and internal production.
Berries are a fruit very high in vitamin C. Depending on the berry. They can have 20 to 50% of this vitamin’s recommended value.
You can also include other high vitamin C foods like grapefruit, lemons, and orange.
Finally, another great food to add to boost your collagen production is beans.
Beans are high in protein. This means that you can receive some amino acids needed for collagen production.
Finding natural collagen foods that are not animal-related might be challenging for those following a plant-based diet.
Including beans not only can help you in your collagen production but it can also help you achieve your total protein requirements, which is one of the challenges most people present.
Other legumes like chickpeas are also high in protein, vitamin C, and zinc, all needed for collagen production, so that you can replace them with beans.
What About Collagen Supplements?
Another common source to boost your collagen levels is to add a collagen supplement.
However, what does the research say about this topic?
A study recollecting the information of several studies (meta-analysis) determined that women supplemented with collagen had better skin elasticity and hydration, resulting in fewer wrinkles.
While there seems to be a relationship between supplementing with collagen and younger-looking skin, more research is needed.
The Bottom Line
Collagen is one of the most abundant proteins in the body. Including foods like bone broth, seafood, berries, and beans can help boost collagen production in several ways.
You might find that supplementing collagen is a more accessible alternative to boost your intake. However, more research is needed.