Regardless of your level as an athlete, anyone who has performed physical activity understands the pain and feeling of wearing that this activity can have on your body. Without physical activity, our bodies will certainly deteriorate more quickly; but it doesn’t always feel like this.
However, physical activity itself does place a legitimate toll on our bodies. One way to negate some of the more lasting effects that intense physical activity can have on our bodies is to eat a diet high in collagen boosting foods, and consistently take a collagen supplement as you get older.
Benefits of Using a Collagen Supplement
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Collagen is the main structural protein in our entire body, and is responsible for the cellular-level creation of our tendons, ligaments, skin, bones, and more. In fact, collagen makes up for at least 25% of all the protein without our bodies.
Problematically though, our body does not entirely produce as much of this substance as we would like it to.
Over 90% of the collagen in our bodies (there are 28 different types) are Type 1 collagen, which is responsible for helping to build the skin, organs, bones and tendons. Type 1 collagen is responsible for the elastic texture of our skin, and is basically the glue that holds our entire body together.
When the natural slowing of collagen production in our bodies happens, the negative effects can settle in rapidly.
One of the main side effects of a lack of collagen is the wearing down of your joints. This can happen rapidly, since collagen makes up the cushioning on your joints.
To slow down this process, it is wise to eat a diet high in foods which can boost collagen levels such as chicken, fish, red meat, and eggs.
Is a Collagen Supplement Beneficial?
If you are unable to obtain enough of these foods in your normal diet, supplementation is also an option! According to a study in the journal of Current Medical Research and Opinion, after 24 weeks of disciplined experimenting the effects of collagen supplementation on athletes,
“This was the first clinical trial of 24-weeks duration to show improvement of joint pain in athletes who were treated with the dietary supplement collagen hydrolysate. The results of this study have implications for the use of collagen hydrolysate to support joint health and possibly reduce the risk of joint deterioration in a high-risk group.
Despite the study’s size and limitations, the results suggest that athletes consuming collagen hydrolysate can reduce parameters (such as pain) that have a negative impact on athletic performance.”
Although there are still some people who doubt the ability of collagen supplementation to improve joint pain, there certainly is proof that it is effective.