12 Collagen-Rich Foods for a Healthier Body
You may have heard of collagen, but do you know what it does in our body? Keeping a healthier body means we need to include a focus on collagen-rich foods. Keep reading to find a guide for meeting your body's collagen needs.
Did you know that one-third of our body's total protein is collagen? It also makes up three-quarters of our skin's dry weight.
The body's extracellular matrix (ECM) is mostly made up of collagen. The ECM uses proteins and other molecules to give cells and tissues structure and support. It repairs damaged tissue and plays a key role in cellular growth, movement, and function.
Benchmark for a Healthier Body
Today's society places a big emphasis on body weight. It's important to understand that different parts of our body play a role in the number on the scale. The body has both body fat and non-fat mass.
Our bodies need a certain amount of "essential fat." This fat stores energy for fuel, regulates hormone function, and protects internal organs. You find this body fat under the skin, in muscle tissue, and around organs.
Non-fat (fat-free) mass describes bone, muscle, organs, tissues, and water. You may hear this called lean tissue.
The non-fat tissues burn calories to produce energy in the body (metabolically active). Body fat stores energy but doesn't create energy.
A common measure used to assess your wellness is the healthy body fat percentage. So, what is that exactly? This measurement describes what percent of your weight is related to body fat.
The rest of your weight comes from the "fat-free mass." The normal ranges for healthy body fat are different for women and men.
The bathroom scale only tells you the total of body fat and fat-free mass. You can calculate an estimate of your body fat percentage using this calculator. This gives you a way to track your fat loss instead of just your total weight.
Let's Discuss Collagen
The body contains four kinds of collagen. These are divided into the following types.
This is the most common type accounting for about 90 percent of the body's collagen. It gives support to bones, cartilage, skin, tendons, and teeth. You'll often hear it described as the "glue" that holds the body together.
This collagen is found in loose fibers. Examples include the cartilage that supports your joints.
Muscles, organs, and arteries rely on this type of collagen. It provides the support needed for proper function.
You'll find this type of collagen in the skin layers. It helps to filter particles through the skin.
Benefits of a Collagen Rich Foods Diet
Collagen peptides describe tiny collagen pieces found in cow protein. Since the body makes collagen proteins, you can boost your level with supplements. These peptides' low molecular weight and high amino acid content make them easy to absorb.
Collagen-rich diets and/or supplements help delay skin aging and promote joint health. Other benefits include increased bone and artery strength to reduce fractures and bruising. It also maintains a healthy blood circulatory system and heart.
Individuals report better sleep, improved sexual and hormonal health, and enhanced mood. This diet can also strengthen your immune system, increase antioxidants and detoxification. Weight loss and increased lifespan are also benefits ascribed to this diet.
What's Included in the Collagen Rich Foods List?
Since the highest concentration of collagen is found in the skin, let's start with "skin foods." The following provides a run-down of collagen-rich foods for the skin.
1. Fish with the Skin Left On
Fish has abundant amino acid levels that your body needs to make collagen. Fish skin has a high level of Type I collagen, so remove the scales but eat the skin.
Tomatoes and especially the sun-dried variety have high vitamin C levels. The body uses vitamin C to produce collagen.
Tomatoes contain the antioxidant lycopene. This protects against skin sun damage and the breaking down of collagen.
Get big doses of vitamin C from blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, and more. This will rev your body to make more protective collagen.
Order up! No matter how you like your eggs cooked, the yolk provides collagen.
The whites also contain amino acids for collagen production.
You'll get lots of nutrients and vitamin C from eating greens of all types. What's your favorite: kale, collard greens, spinach, rainbow chard? The chlorophyll that makes plants green may increase your procollagen that builds collagen.
Now let's focus on collagen-rich foods that benefit the rest of your body.
6. Red Bell Peppers
Red bell peppers are "stuffed" with vitamin C. Did you know that red bell peppers are super ripe green peppers?
The more they ripen, the more vitamin C they contain.
7. Bone Broth
Bone broth offers one of the most popular collagen food sources. You can make this by cooking animal bones or buying pre-made broths.
Zinc is essential for collagen production. If you're a meat-lover, you're in luck because it's high in zinc.
In fact, beef contains three collagen amino acids: hydroxyproline, glycine, and proline.
9. Citrus Fruits
You'll get about 70 mg of vitamin C when you eat one medium-sized orange. The recommended daily value of vitamin C for adult women is 75 milligrams.
That's pretty good.
Legumes of all types provide many proteins and minerals that your body needs. Chickpeas provide a great source of vitamin C and zinc to promote collagen synthesis.
Stop! Don't run away if you think they're gross and slimy. So stick around and be excited to know this fun indulgence has health benefits.
Oysters provide high levels of copper, which promotes collagen production. Remember, they're deliciously baked, grilled, and broiled.
Avocado toast, anyone? Want some Guac? As it turns out, these make healthy snacks.
Avocados and avocado oil provide vitamin E that fights free radicals. They also contain omega-3, which boosts collagen.
Are You Ready to Eat Healthier?
Choosing the right foods is a big step toward achieving a healthier body. Since 2010, SupplementRelief.com has advocated a whole-foods nutrition diet. We believe in making small healthy lifestyle changes and using old-fashioned common sense. We focus on reducing health risks, eliminating chronic disease, and healthy living.
Contact us today to discuss living a healthier life.
Jay Todtenbier is an original founder of SupplementRelief.com in 2010 and has operated the business ever since. He is also a tennis instructor and gospel musician. Formerly he spent 25 years in business development, technology and marketing with startups and major corporations having gone through the tech boom in Silicon Valley in the 90s. He became passionate about, and began studying and practicing Wellness as a Lifestyle after experiencing chronic, personal health challenges including depression, auto-immune disorders, and being overweight that impacted his ability to live a healthy, vibrant life. Since then, he has been an advocate for healthier living encouraging others to live better through making small, gradual changes to lifestyle behaviors relating to whole-foods nutrition, stress management, reasonable exercise, proper sleep, and the use of targeted, high-quality supplements.
Learn more about Jay Todtenbier.
We encourage you to take advantage of these FREE Wellness Resources on our website.
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How to Grocery Shop and What to Eat
We are what we eat. Studies from reputable health organizations suggest that 40-60% of Americans are living with one or more chronic diseases, which negatively impacts their quality of life, reduces employment productivity, and drives up health care costs.1 Lifestyle choices, in particular, the foods we choose to put into our bodies, are making us sick. However, we do have choices regarding our nutrition.
Learn practical tips for healthy and affordable grocery shopping and consider using a list similar to the recommended natural, whole foods grocery shopping list provided to get you off to a good start!
What's the Big Deal About Collagen?
You have probably heard of collagen and the hype surrounding it. From putting it in smoothies to having collagen injections to improve your looks, collagen is having a moment.
The information, knowledge, and experience shared on this website is the opinion of SupplementRelief.com. This site and its content is intended to enhance your knowledge base as YOU MAKE YOUR OWN HEALTHCARE DECISIONS in partnership with your qualified health professional. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Any products referred to are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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