If you’ve been on the lookout for ways to make your complexion prettier, you’ve likely noticed collagen supplements everywhere—and likely wondered if it’s just another trend. Consumable collagen has definitely become more popular, as wellness gurus and celebrities like Jennifer Anniston rave about the supplements they blend in their morning smoothies. While there’s some debate on both sides, edible collagen is a great way to supplement your skincare regimen. Studies have shown that ingesting collagen can help with hydration, skin elasticity, and visible reduction of wrinkles. But before you run to buy a collagen supplement, read on for a little breakdown of the science behind the supplements so you can make the best choice possible.
First things first, just what is collagen?
Collagen is a protein naturally produced in our bodies. In skin, it is found in the dermis (the layer underneath the top layer) and helps form a fibrous network of cells upon which new cells can grow. With age, collagen synthesis drops considerably. When these networks weaken, there isn’t enough collagen to bolster skin and keep it smooth and taut.
What is the best type of collagen for skin?
Over the years, many different types of collagen have been identified. Each type of collagen is best for its own special role and the ones most commonly used in health and beauty products are Types 1-5. For example, Type 1 collagen is the most abundant type present in your body and best for anti-aging.
Beyond the different types of collagen, there’s also another distinction to make before choosing the right supplement. Native collagen, which is the complete collagen protein, is a very large molecule. As a matter of fact, it’s too large to cross through the intestinal wall or cross the barriers of your cells. It is also very difficult for your digestive system to break down.
The collagen found in gelatin and in supplements is hydrolyzed collagen. Hydrolyzed collagen is created when full length collagen is broken down into smaller blocks through a chemical process called hydrolysis. Unfortunately, gelatin is only partially hydrolyzed, so it only has medium solubility – this is why gelatin can only be dissolved in hot water. Most collagen supplements use hydrolyzed collagen peptides, which are smaller than the hydrolyzed collagen in gelatin. These smaller-sized molecules are more able to cross cell barriers and their solubility shows – you can dissolve this type of collagen in cold temperature liquids, perfect for a smoothie or an acai bowl.
How does collagen work when you consume it?
In order to understand why the different types of collagen are important, it’s important to know what happens in your body when you ingest collagen. When collagen is ingested, there are two things that happen: some of it reaches the small intestine and is absorbed into the blood stream while some of it is broken down by your digestive system and used as building blocks for other proteins.
Just how much of the collagen from a supplement is absorbed depends on its bioavailability. Bioavailability, in turn, is affected by the size of the molecule. Larger molecules have trouble crossing barriers in your body.
Because the collagen peptides are pieces of the complete collagen molecule, they are much smaller and thus, have a higher bioavailability than native collagen. This is why not every food source with collagen will necessarily have visible effects on your skin. As much collagen as gelatin or bone broth have, the collagen from those sources is not completely hydrolyzed and thus, will not be absorbed into the bloodstream. Instead, that collagen will be broken up in your digestive system and serve as building blocks for other proteins that your body will make. This is actually where most of the controversy from collagen supplements emerges – not all supplements use the hydrolyzed collagen peptides necessary for visible skin benefits.
The best collagen supplements to try: YANA
Now that the basics are covered, it’s easy to see that YANA Daily Collagen Shots were specially formulated to be the perfect companion for your topical skincare routine. YANA is highly concentrated and uses LUMIPLEX technology for anti-aging kick.
While hydrolyzed collagen peptides are the stars of the show, LUMIPLEX includes phytoceramides, biotin, an antioxidant blend, and vitamin B6 for an extra boost of anti-aging activity.
The collagen in YANA is
hydrolyzed into pieces called peptides. These are the building blocks of
collagen and are highly bioavailable. They are able to cross your small
intestine and enter your bloodstream. Once there, the collagen peptides enter
cells and help slow the loss of collagen while also increasing the body’s
ability to produce more collagen. After all, when your body has more of the
building blocks necessary to the creation of collagen, it is able to create
more of it. YANA can be combined with water or blended into your favorite
smoothie and is available in super convenient to-go bottles.