Collagen Diet: How to Boost Collagen Production Naturally
From injections to creams, there is a whole market of products that claim to boost collagen production. However, there are other ways to increase collagen levels naturally, such as the collagen diet!
Just like any other diet, it is important to determine if the collagen diet suits your nutritional needs. After all, your collagen levels may vary according to your age, gender, and other factors.
What Is Collagen?
To have a better understanding of the collagen diet, we must first understand what collagen is and how our bodies produce it.
Most people believe that collagen mainly helps to prevent the development of wrinkles. Actually, collagen is one of the most abundant proteins in the body. In fact, we can find collagen in muscles, organs, fats, ligaments, and bones. As a result, collagen is crucial to preserve the strength and good health of our bodies.
How Do You Know if Your Body Is Lacking Collagen?
Collagen production decreases as we age. Some of the signs of low collagen levels include:
- Lack of flexibility in tendons and ligaments
- Muscular weakening
- Joint pain and related diseases
Besides aging, an unhealthy diet is one of the main reasons you may produce less collagen. Also, according to many studies, smoking can decrease the production of collagen.
How Does the Collagen Diet Work?
In simple terms, this diet consists of eating foods rich in collagen. Since collagen is a protein, we are most likely to find it in animal products, such as:
- Beef (including gelatin and bone broth)
- Fish (particularly dishes that contain fish skin)
- Dairy products
Eating foods with collagen is a good start to encourage collagen production. However, for our bodies to absorb collagen, we need to consume vitamins and minerals like zinc, copper, and vitamin C.
The older we get, the harder it is for our bodies to absorb collagen. Therefore, as we age it is crucial to make dietary changes that include such vitamins and minerals.
Here are some foods that can help with the absorption of collagen:
Foods Rich in Vitamin C
Oranges are a popular source of vitamin C. However, there are other foods that are richer in vitamin C than oranges. Some examples include guavas, garlic, kiwis, strawberries, brussels sprouts, kale, and red bell peppers.
Foods High in Zinc
Red meat is an excellent source of zinc. However, other healthier, more earth-sustainable alternatives that are rich in zinc include legumes, seeds, and nuts. We can also obtain zinc from treats like dark chocolate.
Foods Rich in Copper
Certain seafoods, like lobsters and oysters, are rich sources of copper. Other foods rich in copper include nuts, seeds, and leafy veggies (including kale and spinach).
Before increasing the intake of these vitamins and minerals, we strongly encourage you to consult your dietary needs with a healthcare professional.
What Else Can You Do to Boost Your Collagen Levels?
Besides our food choices, our lifestyle can also have a significant impact on the production of collagen. For example, long-term sun exposure can negatively alter our collagen levels. Also, sleep deprivation and stress also affect the collagen production and the health of our skin.
In short, if you are aiming to increase collagen in your body, the best thing you can do is lead an overall healthy lifestyle. Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.
If you are looking to start a healthy diet, Z.E.N. Foods can help! We offer meal delivery plans that are both tasty and nutritionally balanced. For more information about our meal plans, please reach out to us at (310) 205-9368.