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Collagen Restores Aging Joints and Skin

Collagen Restores Aging Joints and Skin
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Collagen makes up about one-third of all protein in the body.1 In the skin and joints, collagen provides structural support, strength and resiliency. In youth, damaged collagen is continually repaired and replaced. But with age, the body’s ability to replenish collagen stores declines by about 1.5% each year.2 This loss of collagen is a major contributor to skin aging and loss of joint function.

Whole collagen is a large, complex protein that cannot be easily digested or absorbed into the body. But scientists have discovered that partially broken- down collagen—known as hydrolyzed collagen—is highly absorbable. Consumed orally, hydrolyzed collagen stimulates the production of new collagen in the skin and joints.3-5

What Is Collagen?

There are connective tissues throughout the body, in the skin, bone, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, and more. They give structure, strength, and support to tissues. All connective tissues have protein fibers within them that influence the mechanics and strength of that tissue. Collagen makes up a large proportion of these fibers.

In humans, most of the collagen is present in three forms:2

• Type I collagen is especially prevalent in
the skin, where it makes up over 80% of all collagen. This collagen is the reinforcement structure of connective tissues. It has great tensile strength, resisting stretching and tear- ing. It is also prevalent in bone, tendons, and ligaments.

• Type II collagen is primarily found in cartilage, the connective tissue that protects the bones at the joints.

• Type III collagen is found in skin, cartilage, blood vessels, and throughout many other soft tissues.

Whole collagen is difficult to digest and too large to be absorbed into the body.

But scientists have found that if the collagen is pre- pared in such a way that it is already broken into frag- ments, as much as 95% of it can be absorbed and distributed to tissues throughout the body.2,9

Collagen formulated in this manner is known as hydrolyzed collagen. Once these collagen pieces reach the skin or cartilage, they stimulate repair and rejuvenation of tissues.

Many clinical trials have assessed the ability of oral collagen to improve skin health and appearance. In just the last two years, a number of reviews have sum- marized their findings.7,10,11

The vast majority of published studies have found that skin appearance and markers of skin health are improved after oral intake of collagen.7

Collectively, these studies show that collagen intake results in:

• Improved skin hydration,
• Improved skin elasticity (the ability to stretch

and bounce back without sagging),

• Improved skin texture and condition, and

• Reduction of lines and wrinkles, including crow’s feet.

Collagen and Joint Health

Joints are structures where two or more bones meet.

Cartilage keeps joints like the knee, elbow, fingers, shoulder, and hip working through a full range of motion without pain. This lubricated, rubber-like tissue lines the ends of the bones, cushioning them so that they can glide over each other smoothly without damaging each other.

With wear and tear, joint cartilage breaks down. Over time, it becomes thin, rough, and cracked, and can even erode completely, leaving bone on bone.

This condition is referred to as osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis. It results in inflam- mation, pain, and significant reduction in the range of motion of joints.

Osteoarthritis is a major source of chronic pain and disability in older adults. Knee osteoarthritis is the most common condition leading to surgical joint replacement.13

Collagen is vital to the structure and health of car- tilage, along with other supportive structures around joints, such as ligaments and tendons.

Hydrolyzed collagen has been shown to protect cartilage and repair it in an animal model of osteoarthri- tis, and to improve measures of osteoarthritis severity and quality of life in a clinical trial.14,15


Collagen is the most prominent protein in the body. It gives form and strength to various tissues, including the skin and joints.

Collagen production declines with advancing age. In the skin, that leads to dryness and wrinkles. In joints, it causes a breakdown in cartilage that can result in arthritis.


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  2. Sibilla S, Godfrey M, Brewer S, et al. An Overview of the Beneficial Effects of Hydrolysed Collagen as a Nutraceutical on Skin Proper- ties: Scientific Background and Clinical Studies. The Open Nutraceu- ticals Journal. 2015 03/04;8(1):29-42.
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