Foods That Help Your Body Produce Collagen

Foods That Help Your Body Produce Collagen

To supplement or to eat?
“Diet plays a surprisingly large role in the appearance and youthfulness of your skin,” says certified holistic nutritionist Krista Goncalves, CHN. “And that all comes down to collagen.”

Collagen is the protein that gives skin its structure, suppleness, and stretch. There are many types of collagen, but our body mainly consists of type 1, 2, and 3. As we age, we produce less collagen in our skin every yearTrusted Source — hence the tendency toward wrinkles and thinning skin we see the older we get.

This explains the boom of collagen supplements touted in our social feeds and store shelves these days. But are collagen pills and powders the best route? The key difference between the two may be down to the bioavailability — the body’s ability to use a nutrient.

Why you should consider food first
“Foods like bone broth contain a bioavailable form of collagen your body can use right away, making it arguably superior to supplements,” says registered dietitian Carrie Gabriel. A 2012 review on nutrition and agingTrusted Source also concluded that fruit and vegetables are the safest and healthiest approach to boosting skin health.

Plus, since over-the-counter supplements are largely unregulated, it’s probably safer to stick with a dietary approach to boosting collagen.

Eating collagen-rich foods or foods that boost collagen production may also help create the building blocks (amino acids) you need for your skin goals. “There are three amino acids important for collagen synthesis: proline, lysine, and glycine,” says registered dietitian and beauty expert Katey Davidson, MScFN, RD

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