Top 8 Benefits Of Collagen For Hair And Skin And 13 Ways To Get It Naturally

Collagen is not a small part of our body. It is a wonderful chemical for good skin and hair. It can be said that collagen loss is one of the important factors that cause aging not only in appearance but also in the decline of the structure and function of organs in the body. Therefore, today, in this article, Beauty Talk will give you some information about the top benefits of collagen for hair and skin, and how to get it naturally.

Top 8 Beauty Benefits Of Collagen And 13 Simple Ways To Get It Naturally

I. What Is Collagen?

1. Overview

The name collagen comes from the Greek word “κόλλα”, which means “glue”, and the suffix -“γέν”, which stands for “producing”. This can be contributed by the early method to obtain glue by boiling the skin and tendons of animals.

Collagen is a protein found in animals, especially in muscle and connective tissue in the mammal body. It is a major component of connective tissue, and is the most abundant protein in mammals, accounting for about 25% to 35% of body protein.

Collagen, in the form of long fibers, is mainly found in fibrous tissue such as ligaments, tendons and skin, and also in the cornea, cartilage, bone, blood vessels, intestines, and discs[1]. Fiber fibroblasts are the most common cell that produces collagen.

Collagen accounts for 1-2% of muscle tissue and accounts for 6% of muscle weight. Gelatin, used in food and industry, is partially hydrogenated collagen.

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The main role of collagen is to connect tissues in the body together, without which the body will only be discrete parts.

2. Collagen In The Human Body

In the human body, collagen is a protein that accounts for 30% of total protein. Collagen helps to connect the tissues. Scientists often compare collagen as a type of glue to unite parts of a human body into a whole complete body, without which the human body would be disjointed.

Collagen is essential in the production of pure amino acids for the health of the hair, skin, joints, nails, and other tissues in the human body.

There are about 29 types of collagen found in the body, accounting for 90% of the following groups:

  • In the skin, tendons, blood vessels, organs, and bones
  • In bone cartilage
  • In muscles
  • In the cell membrane
  • In the cell surfaces, hair, and placenta

II. Benefits Of Collagen

A. Benefits Of Collagen For Hair
1. Strengthens Hair

As a result of physical, dietary, and lifestyle factors, the amount of collagen in the body is reduced, affecting parts of the body, including the hair. Weak hair can cause many troubles for you. Dry and damaged hair will not react well to humidity, and the hair will appear frizzy. Lighter hair will also get float or wispy after shampoo.

With damaged and dry hair, and frequent use of styling, bending, dyeing, and so on, collagen treatment will be the best rehabilitation for hair.

Collagen is found in keratin in hair and nails and has been shown to provide nutrients that support the activity of this keratin[2] [3]. Proteins of collagen will accelerate the process of bonding the hair tissue to remove damage and help the hair to become healthy. Thus collagen supplement makes strong hair and nails, shiny nails, smooth, strong, and works to limit hair loss.

2. Prevents Hair Loss

Hair loss can be contributed to chemical damages, stress, aging, and nutrient deficiency. One of the deficient nutrients can be collagen, which amount decreases substantially when we age. Damaged hair causes women to become less confident and have difficulty in styling hair; too thin hair will also cause the aesthetic appearance to decrease.

Proper collagen supplementation will make your hair sleek, healthy, restore damaged hair, and prevent hair loss from the inside by increasing hair-building proteins[4]. It also leads to thicker and longer hair.

3. Treats Grey Hair

Black hair is a manifestation of mental comfort, good health, hormonal balance, and sufficient nutrients such as copper, zinc. Normally, hair over the age of 40 starts to turn grey due to loss of pigmentation, hair root shrinkage, resulting in gradual hair loss and grey hair. The root cause of grey hair is that the hair follicles stop producing melanin – pigmented hair cells. Your hair starts becoming colorless when your body stops producing melanin pigments.

Collagen can also reduce the appearance of grey hair by strengthening the structure of your hair follicles, where the pigment that gives hair its color is produced[5].

4. Heals Split Ends and Breakage

Dryness is the first cause of split ends. Split hair usually occurs when the hair is exposed to high temperatures, which often results in insufficient natural oils to maintain moisture for the hair. Hair is split due to the effects of air, severe sunshine, and humidity changes continuously. Especially, split ends are the sign of aging, when the amount of collagen in the body decreases dramatically.

Collagen supplements are an excellent way to deal with dry, brittle hair. Hair’s moisture level is restored. As a result, collagen repairs split ends, increases overall hair health, and makes your hair look beautiful.

B. Benefits Of Collagen For Skin
1. Improves Health Of Skin

Since the age of 40, the speed of degradation is very fast; the skin begins to lose, the muscles are not strong, the bone loss of calcium and the tissue around the vessels reduce the elasticity of the arteries prominent, vulnerable to the formation of bruises.

Collagen makes up about 70% of the skin structure and is distributed mainly in the dermis of the skin. Collagen works to connect cells, stimulate the metabolism, and create elasticity of the skin[6]. Therefore, collagen acts as one of the most important substances of the cosmetic industry, especially skin care, plastic surgery, burn surgery, and so on.

In addition to the task of linking, collagen also has the duty of creating resilience. Our facial skin can relax when laughing, talking or squinting; and can go back to normal as the activity stops thanks to muscle movement and skin elasticity. Facial skin can be stretched smoothly because young or wrinkled as aged is a result of changes in the natural collagen. Thus, collagen is the most important factor that helps us maintain our youth.

2. Heals Scars

Scars are a natural part of the body's self-healing process, which occurs when the skin is exposed to injuries caused by accidents, burns, surgery or inflammatory acne. Scars are formed due to the broken and damaged collagen and elastin binds of the skin. When your skin is damaged, your body will produce tissue and collagen to heal the wound. The new skin is called a scar, different from the normal skin of the body.

Collagen has a positive effect on the production of new skin cells, resulting in rapid regeneration of the skin so that the bruises will also be blurred. In medicine, collagen is used to treat skin lesions due to burns. In beauty aesthetics, collagen is used to regenerate skin surface quickly, to repair the skin damage, to stretch the surface of the skin, to recover the scar caused by acne.

3. Takes Care Of Wound

Almost everyone experiences open wounds at some points in their life. Wounds that are not well looked after may lead to tetanus, skin and subcutaneous tissue infections, vaginitis, cellulitis, fever, and pus.

Collagen is a component of skin tissue that can benefit all stages of the wound healing process[7]. In other words, it can heal the wound effectively and quickly in the safest and most natural way.

The open wound can be closed if a good amount of collagen is applied to the wound bed. Collagen forms a wound dressing that resists against bacteria. It keeps the wound sterilized and heals the wound more quickly.

4. Removes Wrinkles

The decline in quality and quantity of collagen will lead to the “aging” effect of the body. Changes in the skin and on the face are the most recognizable signs. Wrinkles start from the small lines on the canthus and the lips. Gradually, it becomes deep wrinkles; the facial features are sag and limp.

Collagen consumption increases skin elasticity and moisture, in that way it declines the aging process and removes wrinkles[8]. The thicker the collagen, the stronger and firmer is the skin. Besides, the damage or cell death on the skin will be collagen remodelling, regeneration, and production of new cells “vitality” more.

III. How To Get Collagen Naturally

Supplementation of collagen by including it in your diet is recommended for its safety, effectiveness, and thoroughness. Skin and hair are nourished from the inside are highly effective, beautiful and long-lasting. The use of collagen through food is also very safe, and do not cause allergies. Below are the top 13 foods that have been proven to be collagen friendly.

1. Cabbage

Cabbage is the most well-known food that contains collagen-producing components. Including cabbage in your diet can also boost your health and increase skin hydration and elasticity.

  • Type: Cannonball cabbage, bok choy, napa cabbage, savoy cabbage, purple cabbage, Portugal cabbage, and so on
  • Nutrient profile: Fiber, vitamin B6, folate, iron, potassium, vitamin K, antioxidants, phytonutrients
  • Warning: Cabbage contains ascorsbic acid oxidase that destroys vitamin C. Do not eat cabbage when taking vitamin C for best results.
  • Who should not consume cabbage: people under the following conditions: with diabetes, hypothyroidism, and surgery.
2. Soy Products

Genistein in soy is a natural hormone that stimulates the production of collagen. Soy helps to get rid of wrinkles, fine lines and control free radical damage to the skin.

  • Type: Soybean, soy milk, soy cheese, tofu, soy sprouts, soy sprout powder
  • Nutrient profile: Genistein, fiber, antioxidants, isoflavones
  • Warning: Never eat soy or soy product with the following ingredients: honey, egg, and brown sugar.
  • Who should not consume soy: People with breast cancer, gastritis, renal calculus, gout should stay away from soy, especially soy milk. Pregnant women and men should limit the consumption of soy.
3. Red Fruits And Vegetables

Lycopene in red fruits and vegetables is an antioxidant that protects the skin from sun damages and prevents collagen breakdown.

  • Type: Apples, tomatoes, beets, red peppers, red potatoes, watermelon, pomegranates
  • Nutrient profile: Lycopene, anthocyanin, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C
  • Warning: Do not eat tomatoes with cucumber since enzyme catabolic in cucumber will destroy vitamin C in tomatoes.
  • Who should not consume red fruits and vegetables: People with diabetes and pregnant women should avoid eating too many tomatoes, watermelon, and pomegranates.
4. Olive

Olive provides a large amount of sulfur, which contributes to the formation of collagen in the human body. Eating olive prevents dermatitis, reduces skin oiliness, and treats acne.

  • Type: green olive, black olive, olive oil
  • Nutrient profile: Calories, sulfur, fiber, vitamin E, acid oleic, antioxidants
  • Warning: Do not fry olive (olive oil). Olives are rich in calories, so eating too many olives or olive oil can cause weight gain (2 tablespoons account for 240 calories).
  • Who should not consume olive: people with diabetes and high blood pressure should not eat too many olives as it decreases blood sugar. Olive can also cause allergies and nausea.
5. Avocado

Avocados contain vitamin E that reduces collagen breakdown and omega 3 fatty acid that promotes collagen production. Adding avocados to your diet helps boost skin and hair health and rejuvenate damaged cells.

  • Type: Avocado flesh, avocado oil
  • Nutrient profile: Omega 3 fatty acid, omega 6 fatty acid, vitamin A, vitamin E, fiber, and unsaturated fat
  • Warning: Eating avocados cause weight gain
  • Who should not consume avocado: People with latex-sensitive, liver problems should avoid avocados and avocado oil. Pregnant women should not eat avocados during pregnancy and breastfeeding, as it can reduce milk production. Avocados also can cause damage to the mammary glands and milk production.
6. Turkey

Zinc in Turkey increases the production of collagen and elastin that promote cells growth. A proper amount of turkey added in the diet can reduce skin aging and promote hair growth.

  • Nutrient profile: zinc, magie, vitamin A, vitamin D, trans fat
  • Warning: Eating turkey can lead to drowsiness and vomit. Weight can increase if you eat turkey meat along with the skin,
7. Fish

Collagen synthesis can be promoted by the effect of zinc and omega 3 fatty acid, including in fish[9].

  • Type: Salmon, mackerel, tuna
  • Nutrient profile: Zinc, magie, vitamin A, omega 3, calcium
  • Warning: The choice of fish plays a decisive role in the processing of food flavors and ensuring healthy hygiene, especially for fish that are usually eaten raw.
  • Who should not consume fish: Obesity and diabetes people should not eat too much wild sea fish (salmon). Pregnant women or breastfeeding mothers should not eat salmon meat because it can slow down the development of infants. Children eating too much salmon and tuna will have poor memory and reduce the ability to focus.
8. Bone Broth

Bone broth is the first dish people think of when talking about collagen. Because it is the ancient way to produce collagen, bone broth contains the bioavailable form of collagen synthesis.

  • Type: Beef bone broth (provide collagen type I), chicken and turkey bone broth (provide collagen type II)
  • Nutrient profile: Antioxidants, amino acids, electrolytes, and collagen
  • Warning: Homemade bone broth is best. Cook the bone with low heat for a long time to prevent destroying the nutrients.
9. Citrus

The presence of vitamin C in citrus connects the amino acid to form collagen in the body[10]. The vitamin protects the cells from collagen breakdown and aging.

  • Type: Lemon, oranges, kumquats, and pomelo
  • Nutrient profile: Fiber, vitamin C, and sugar
  • Warning: Most citrus has sour flavor (acid) and can damage the stomach. Try to dilute the pure juice or avoid eating citrus for breakfast, when the stomach is empty.
10. Eggs

Like bone broth, an egg contains collagen[11]. Besides, sulfur in eggs is required for collagen production inside the human body.

  • Type: Egg yolk, eggshell membranes
  • Nutrient profile: Lipid, Glucid, sulfur, phosphor, calcium
  • Warning: egg white is difficult to digest raw. Egg yolk contains lots of calories that can cause weight gain. Consumption of 3 eggs per week is limited. Egg also contributes to the formation of scars.
  • Who should not consume eggs:  People under the following conditions should not eat eggs: fever, diarrhea, surgery.
11. Berries

Ellagic acid in berries prevents collagen breakdown in cells. Along with that, vitamin C in berries contributes to collagen synthesis in the human.

  • Type: Strawberry, blueberry, raspberry, blackberry, red currant, and black currant
  • Nutrient profile: Vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, magie, and potassium
  • Warning: Eating berries can lead to gastrointestinal distress, hypoglycemia, and vitamin K overdose.
  • Who should not consume berries: People with salicylates sensitivity, prescription blood thinners, and diabetes.
12. Garlic

Set aside its uncomfortable duration smell, garlic and its close cousins provides a huge amount of sulfur for collagen to synthesize in the cells.

  • Type: Garlic, shallots, leeks, chives, and onion
  • Nutrient profile: Allicin, vitamin B6, vitamin C, magie, phosphorus, sulfur, and zinc
  • Warning: Foods that should never be combined with garlic: chicken and eggs. Ten grams of garlic per day is up to limit.
  • Who should not consume garlic: People suffering from liver problems, indigestion, allergies, diarrhea, and eye problems.
13. Chia Seed

Omega 3 fatty acid present in chia seed contribute to collagen production in the body[12]. Adding chia seeds to the diet helps to build healthy skin and hair and prevent dryness.

  • Nutrient profile: Saturated fat (omega 3 fatty acid, omega 6 fatty acid), vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B6, calcium, phosphorus, and zinc
  • Warning: Chia seed consumption can cause low blood pressure, stomach irritation, and indigestion.
  • Who should not consume chia seed: Chia seed has potential effects on pregnant women, so it is probably better to stay away from chia seed during your pregnancy period.

IV. Warnings 

Collagen is possibly safe when taken by mouth. However, there are some side effects in some circumstances.

1. Side Effects
  • Increase Calcium Intake: Collagen products made from pigskin, cow, and fish contain high amounts of calcium compared with hydrolyzed collagen. Average calcium levels are in the range of 8.5-10.2 ml/dl. If numbers increase, we have high calcium. Some prominent manifestations of increased calcium intake include constipation, bone pain, fatigue, abnormal heart rhythms.
  • Irritation: An allergic reaction can occur if users are allergic to collagen sources.
  • Decrease Appetite: Collagen derived from marine fish often has an unpleasant sensation. The smell is not attractive, taste difficult to drink.
  • Acne: Collagen products often contain vitamin C to help promote collagen effects. If you use for a long time, while combining diet, resting unreasonable, acne will begin to appear.
2. Dosage 

The recommended dosage for hair regrowth is 5 to 6 grams. Dosage for collagen type II is up to 2.5mg daily, up to 24 weeks.

3. When To Take Collagen

Collagen is safe to be taken at any time of the day.

4. Who Should Use Collagen

Collagen is essential for everybody. Collagen from natural sources (diet) cannot be omitted in the diet for a long time, especially for people over 30. Collagen supplements should only be used for people over 20, after 25 years old to be ideal, and up to 3 months long.

The article has provided the best benefits of collagen for hair and skin. We also gave you the top foods to naturally obtain collagen into the body. However, collagen is not the only factor that affects your gorgeousness. One point to note is that each body of each age will have the ability to absorb different collagen. If you continue to take collagen supplements, there are a number of factors that you should consider before using. Ask your doctor or experienced consultant for advice.

Read more: Top 11 Benefits Of Buttermilk On Hair And Skin. This article was medically reviewed/fact checked by Heather M. Duquette-Wolf, RD, CSSD.

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