Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies. It’s found all over the body: in your skin, digestive system, blood vessels, tendons, muscles, hair, and joints. Collagen is the substance that makes your skin look full, smooth, and hydrated. It’s also abundant in cartilage, the substance that pads your joints.
Collagen intake is important to keep up your body’s collagen production. Your body slows collagen production as you age. That loss of collagen results in wrinkles, weak muscles, and stiff joints.
Why should I eat collagen-boosting foods?
To keep up with the depleted collagen production, supplement your diet with collagen boosting foods! Certain foods naturally stimulate the body’s collagen product.
- Vitamin C
- Amino acids
- Vitamin E
What foods should I eat?
Collagen-boosting foods are not only great for your skin, but they’re great for your body as well. These 9 foods will enhance your body’s natural collagen production.
Greens like kale, spinach, swiss chard, and other salad greens are rich in chlorophyll, an antioxidant that increases collagen production. Eating more fruits and vegetables is also great for your overall health. Your skin benefits from replacing processed foods with fresh fruits and vegetables.
Very little research backs up this claim, but many beauty experts swear that bone broth intake boosts your body’s collagen production. Bone broth is thought to contain the collagen from the bones that it is made from. This idea is controversial, but you can read more about it here.
Marine collagen is one of the easiest absorbed types of collagen. Fish is rich in collagen, but in the parts that you don’t want to eat. Fish skin, scales, and eyes are very high in collagen, so usually they’re ground up into a protein powder.
Chicken is chock-full of collagen. The protein contains amino acids that Chicken neck and cartilage are especially collagen-rich—but you probably won’t be eating a lot of that. You can get collagen supplements with the less desirable chicken parts.
Egg whites contain an amino acid called proline, which is necessary for collagen production. Egg whites can also be applied to your skin in an egg white mask that shrinks pores.
Citrus fruits like lemon, lime, and oranges are great sources of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is a fundamental part of collagen synthesis and makes it a vital molecule for skin health.
Avocado is a great source of Vitamin C and Vitamin E. Vitamin E is an important antioxidant that helps you protect your skin from oxidative damage. Interestingly, Vitamin E is more effective when combined with Vitamin C.
Berries are also full of antioxidants, which protect the skin from damage. Antioxidants fight against free radicals, harmful cells that build up in your skin due to stress and other external factors.
You might not know it, but tomatoes are a great source of Vitamin C! They also contain an antioxidant called lycopene, which may offer some protection against UV rays.