Is there a link between collagen and immunity?

Collagen makes up for 30% of our body’s protein. However, the level of collagen within us starts to decline in our 20s [1]. Here we look at how the whole body benefits from taking daily collagen supplements. 

Do you suffer from hair loss, weak nails and skin prone to breakouts? 

Perhaps you’ve heard about the benefits of collagen on hair, skin and nails (check out our ‘collagen 101’ blogs for more in depth explanation and real life scenarios). 

Did you know that collagen can also aid with our immune system? There is growing research that highlights the link between collagen rich tissue with a well functioning immune system [2]. 

The last couple of years have had us all thinking about our immune system, more so on how to strengthen our immunity. Let’s take a look at what collagen actually is and how taking collagen can boost your immune health through a variety of ways.

What is Collagen? 

In short, collagen is a protein. In fact it is the most abundant protein in our body. Its main function is to hold our bodies together, ensuring we have strong connective tissue in our ligaments, tendons, skin and muscles. 

Although there are 28 types of collagen, the most common types are type I, type II and type III. Here’s a brief description of their role within our bodies:

            • Type I – found in connective tissue, these allow our skin, muscle and body tissues to be stretched without tearing.
            • Type II – found in cartilage, it allows our bones and joints to glide without residence.
            • Type III – provides support for the functioning of blood vessels, muscles and organs [3].

In which ways can collagen aid in maintaining strong immunity and health? 

#Skin 

Our skin is our body’s first line of defense. Covering roughly 2 square meters of our body with 11 miles of blood vessels. The skin is the largest body organ, housing several types of immune cells that assist the body’s immune response. 

Collagen is known for strengthening skin tissue, providing hydration and increasing its density. A study has shown how collagen can also speed up the healing of cuts and wounds [4], preventing bacteria from entering our body.

#Bones

Bones are mainly made up of collagen protein, giving them strength and density. As we age, the levels of collagen in our body reduces, weakening our bones and ultimately leading to stiff and painful joints. 

A year long study of post-menopausal women found that the group of women taking 5 grams of collagen, were showing an increase of up to 7% more bone mass density, compared to a group of women not taking any collagen [5]. Bone mass density is a measure of the calcium, protein and minerals the bones contain. A low bone mass density can lead to weak bones and the risk of osteoporosis. 

#Heart

Arteries are the blood vessels that carry blood away from your heart. Collagen keeps these arteries flexible and elastic, helping to regulate blood pressure. When the arteries become less flexible and elastic, it can lead to narrowing of the vessels, known as atherosclerosis. Which in turn can lead to cardiovascular disease such as a heart attack and stroke. 

A study taken over a 6 month period followed adults that took 16 grams of collagen on a daily basis. The study showed a significant reduction of the stiffness in arteries from the start of the study to the end of the study [6].  

#Gut

Poor diet and other health issues can cause the lining of the gut to thin out. Allowing bacteria to permeate the microbiome (a large part of the immune system). Type I collagen helps with the stretching of body tissue, which can also aid in the sealing and healing of broken tissue. 

A study found that taking collagen peptides can reduce the negative effects of this digestive issue. In addition, reducing the inflammation and aid in repairing the digestive tract [7]. 

Our unflavoured collagen powder will give you everything you need to help maintain healthy skin, bones, heart and gut. With the addition of Biotin, Hyaluronic Acid and  Vitamin C (needed to hold collagen fibres together) [8], as well as the stimulation of type I, type II and type III collagen in your body. This powder will provide a wholesome boost.

Being a loose, unflavoured powder means you can add it to any of your favourite drinks, hot or cold, tea, smoothies. You name it, you can add it! 

Here’s a secret, you can even add it to bakes goodies!

There is quite a lot of research and ongoing support that shows the link between immunity and taking a daily supplement of collagen. 

Whilst Collagen on its own is great for immunity, for an added immunity boost, why not try our new product Immunity Collagen Peptides which contains 10,000mcg of collagen peptides per serve, with added Vitamin C, Zinc, Vitamin A and Vitamin D3. It is a powerful blend for immune health. As the skin is our body’s first line of defense, collagen peptides are important for a healthy immune system as they can help maintain normal skin function and help to reduce inflammation. 

It goes without saying that a healthy lifestyle, balanced nutritional meals and exercise is also needed to maintain strong immunity. 

In addition, care needs to be taken if you are on regular medication as taking collagen can interfere with certain medications. Please see our blog Does Collagen Interfere with medicines? Everything You Need to Know for more information.

Here at The Collagen Co we’ve got you covered with your collagen needs. From unflavoured loose powder to flavoured sachets you can pop in your bag ready to add to your water and take during the day. 

Sources 

[1] https://parjournal.net/article/view/3863 

[2] https://www.gelita.com/sites/default/files/documents/2021-02/Role%20of%20Collagen%20and%20IMMUPEPT%20in%20Immune%20Health_2021-01-21_GELITA.pdf

[3] https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/collagen-benefits

[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4203321/

[5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5793325/ 

[6] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5429168/

[7] https://ketologic.com/blogs/articles/collagen-immune-health 

[8] https://kalumibeauty.com/blogs/in-the-glow/how-do-collagen-and-vitaminc-work-together-and-what-are-their-benefits 

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