Collagen supplements are the latest craze in anti-ageing skincare. But are they worth the hype?
Many claim collagen supplements are the secret to healthier, younger-looking skin, and that they can also help strengthen bones, promote hair growth, and improve joint health.
Meat-based collagen is often made of undesirable animal part. Think, ground-up chicken, pig, and cow parts. These ingredients can contain untold levels of contaminants and heavy metals. There’s none of that to worry about with Reverse Life high-strength collagen as it’s made from a quality sustainable marine source.
What is collagen?
Collagen is a protein found in almost every cell in our body, serving as a framework for bones, tendons, and muscles.
There are over 16 different types of collagen in the human body, but Types I and II are the most common:
- Type I: Made of densely packed fibres and accounts for 90% of the body’s collagen. This collagen type provides structure to the skin, bones, tendons, connective tissues, fibrous cartilage, and teeth.
- Type II: Made of more loosely packed fibres and found mainly in elastic cartilage to help cushion the joints.
- Type III: Supports the structure of muscles, organs, and arteries.
- Type IV: Found in the skin and helps with filtration.
From an anti-ageing perspective, collagen is what keeps our skin from sagging or wrinkling, and is responsible for the plump, youthful looks we enjoyed in our teens and twenties.
What harms collagen production?
As we age, our body’s natural ability to produce collagen decreases.
We start losing collagen from our mid-twenties, and women can lose up to an extra 30% of collagen production in the first five years of menopause! And it’s this loss of collagen that’s responsible for most of the visible signs of ageing; as the skin loses collagen, it also loses its natural firmness, leading to sagging and wrinkles and an overall reduction in radiance and dewiness. If you looked in the mirror this morning and the reflection staring back at you was a little "droopy" you can thank a reduction in collagen for that!
In addition to ageing, diet, smoking, environmental damage (including sun damage) and even some health conditions can have dramatic effects on the body’s ability to produce collagen. As too can sugar. So if you have a sweet tooth, it’s not just your waist line that you’re putting in jeopardy. A diet high in sugary treats is going to fast track those wrinkles.
What are collagen supplements?
Collagen supplements like Reverse Life marine collagen seek to replenish the body’s natural collagen supplies.
Most collagen supplements are made from animal parts that have been broken down into peptides: smaller cells that can be more easily broken down and absorbed by the body.
Because plants don’t produce collagen, true collagen supplements contain collagen peptides taken from the connective tissues of animals or fish – bone broth is an excellent source of collagen.
In theory, this could include almost any animal source, however, most are either bovine (cow) or marine collagen.
Marine collagen, the type used in Reverse Life high-strength liquid collagen formula, is believed to contain the highest amounts of Type I collagen, which makes up around 90% of the human body’s collagen supply.
In recent years, there has been a rise in “vegan” collagen. However, it’s important to note that any vegan/vegetarian supplements don’t actually contain collagen. Instead, they contain the “ingredients” our body needs to produce its own collagen, such as vitamin C and amino acids.
You can take a collagen supplement in numerous ways. From powders that can be baked into cakes to pills or even creams that are applied topically.
Generally, liquid collagen is seen as the best option, as this is most easily absorbed by the body. Reverse Life marine collagen is an excellent example of a liquid collagen supplement that’s packed full of Type I collagen in addition to all the nutrients the body needs to continue producing its own. It also contains hyaluronic acid which is another beneficial property in the fights against skin ageing.
What are the benefits of taking a collagen supplement?
Because collagen is such an essential part of the body’s makeup and has such a dramatic effect on ageing, collagen supplements are incredibly popular in beauty circles. But the benefits don’t stop at reducing wrinkles.
There are plenty of pros to taking a daily collagen supplement:
- Improves skin health
Studies have found that collagen peptides and supplements can be instrumental in reducing wrinkles and hydrating the skin, leading to healthier and younger-looking skin.
- Relieves joint pain
Collagen supplements can help reduce inflammation that leads to joint pain and disorders like osteoarthritis. A study of 73 athletes consuming 10g of collagen daily for 24 weeks found a significant decrease in joint pain compared to a control group who didn’t take a supplement.
- Prevents bone loss
We know collagen decreases as we age, but you might not realise that bone mass also decreases naturally over time. This loss of bone density can lead to conditions like osteoporosis and a higher risk of bone fractures.
Studies have shown that collagen supplements might be able to reduce bone breakdown and strengthen the bones, particularly when taken alongside calcium.
- Boosts muscle
1-10% of muscle tissue is made of collagen, so as collagen decreases, so does muscle mass. So, it stands to reason that collagen can help build and strengthen muscles.
A study of 27 “frail men” found taking 15g of collagen alongside a 12-week exercise program gained significantly more muscle mass and strength than those who didn’t take the supplement.
- Promotes heart health
In theory, collagen supplements can help reduce the risk of heart-related conditions as it provides structure to the arteries. It may also help boost HDL “good” cholesterol.
One study of 31 healthy adults found that taking 16g of collagen daily for 6 months lead to a significant reduction in artery stiffness, and experienced an average 6% increase of “good” cholesterol.
Whare are the risks associated with collagen supplements?
Up until recently, the biggest concern surrounding collagen supplements was the lack of research surrounding them. You’ll be as pleased, as we are proud, to hear that Reverse Life partnered in 2021 with the NHS in an initiative to carry out more research into the many health and wellbeing benefits of collagen. Look out for more information and white papers being published in 2022.
Best collagen supplements UK: Are they worth it?
Most health professionals agree there’s very little risk associated with collagen supplements but plenty of benefits - so why wouldn't you!
Today there is sufficient evidence to justify regular collagen consumption.
Additionally, the mass-held belief is that, if you’re getting your collagen supplements from reputable sources (like Reverse Life Marine Collagen), there are plenty of potential benefits of taking a collagen supplement that make it worth a try!
If you’re in any doubt about the effectiveness of Reverse Life liquid collagen supplement, just check out the Feefo and TrustPilot ratings. With over 8,500 genuine customer reviews, this is one UK collagen company you really can trust. We also offer a 30 day money back guarantee so as we like to say, what have you got to lose? Only your wrinkles!