Next time you’re walking down the beauty aisle of your local health food or grocery store, pay attention to just how many products contain collagen. More and more products are relying on this important protein because of its ability to help maintain luxurious hair, optimize the smoothness and suppleness of your skin, and support strong, beautiful nails. 

However, did you know that these are just a few of the benefits of taking collagen? It’s true! The health benefits of collagen reach far beyond its beauty-boosting abilities to support gut, heart, and joint health. Nowadays, you can venture past the beauty aisle to find collagen in products such as protein bars, tea, and even coffee.

Despite this warm welcome into our foods and beauty products, finding a clean source of collagen can be tough. That’s why I formulated my own collagen protein sourced from grass-fed, pasture-raised beef.

Before I get into my own physician-formulated supplement, however, let’s take a look at the health benefits of collagen and why I recommend taking it daily.

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What is Collagen?

Think of collagen as the “glue” that holds your body together. In fact, collagen comes from the Greek word ‘kolla’ – meaning ‘glue’. It’s the fibrous protein found throughout your body, in organs, muscles, skin, hair, nails, teeth, bones, blood vessels, tendons, joints, cartilage, and your digestive system. There are many different types of collagen (16 to be exact), that do different things, but the majority of collagen, up to 90%, is “Type 1”. Like a superhero, it’s even stronger than steel (gram for gram!) This type is found in your skin, bones, organs, eyes, and inside your digestive tract.1

Starting at about age 35, collagen production naturally begins to slow, which can have all sorts of negative effects on your body. By age 40, collagen begins to deplete faster than your body can reproduce it, and by age 60, over ½ of your body’s collagen has been depleted.2 In addition to aging, many other factors impact collagen levels. These include genetics, smoking, pollution, excessive sun exposure, and nutritional deficiencies, among others. Luckily, adding a collagen supplement such as Collagen Protein Powder to your daily regimen can help you continue reaping the benefits of collagen as you age.

Surprising Health Benefits of Collagen

So in addition to the external benefits of collagen, what else can it do for you? You might be surprised to learn the many amazing benefits of taking collagen.

Surprising Top 7 Health Benefits of Collagen – Infographic – Amy Myers MD®Surprising Top 7 Health Benefits of Collagen - Infographic - Amy Myers MD® 7 Health Benefits of Collagen – Infographic – Amy Myers MD®

1. Collagen Helps Repair a Leaky Gut

Nearly 80% of your immune system is housed in your gut. When your gut becomes leaky, toxins, food particles, and infections tear through your intestinal wall and enter your bloodstream, causing inflammation. Over time, this chronic inflammation can lead to autoimmunity.

Thankfully, your intestinal wall is made up of microscopic folds or “villi,” which are actually built of collagen. When I see a patient with a leaky gut, I use supplementation to increase the production of collagen-produced amino acids. These little compounds literally “seal the leak” in your intestinal lining by promoting tissue growth and cellular health.

If you have been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease or thyroid condition (the vast majority of which is autoimmune), then you likely have a leaky gut and would benefit from adding collagen into your diet.

2. Collagen Improves the Appearance of Hair, Skin, and Nails

Hair loss and skin issues can be symptoms of thyroid dysfunction, as well as the normal aging process. As you age, you may have noticed that you’re not seeing as many collagen benefits as you used to; your skin has become looser and less elastic, you may have more wrinkles and creases where your skin was once more smooth and supple. You might also experience brittle nails, peeling, splitting or breakage, and your hair may also begin to thin and become dry and brittle.

This is because collagen protein is essential to healthy hair, skin, and nails. As I mentioned, your natural collagen production decreases as you age. Increasing collagen intake can go a long way to make your skin appear more firm and smooth. Collagen can also benefit the appearance of your hair’s fullness and shine.3

Many people don’t realize that adding collagen to your diet can also help in reducing the appearance of cellulite and stretch marks. When skin loses its elasticity and becomes thin, cellulite becomes more obvious. Collagen benefits your skin by increasing moisture retention, boosting elasticity, and helping to smooth out that dimpled appearance.

3. Collagen Impacts Joint Health

Collagen benefits your joints, tendons, and ligaments by allowing them to glide and move with ease — much like how oil benefits a car!. With age, and as your collagen production depletes, your joints can become stiff, swollen and painful, even causing a lack of mobility. Collagen contains the amino acids glycine and proline, which help to support joint mobility and a healthy inflammatory response.

4. Collagen Supports Weight Management

One of the most amazing benefits of collagen is that it can even help you manage your weight! Glycine, the amino acid I mentioned earlier, forms muscle by converting glucose into energy. Because muscle burns more calories than fat, having more lean muscle tissue gives your metabolism a natural boost. Essentially, collagen benefits your body by turning it into a fat-burning machine, even when you’re at rest. There is some evidence to also suggest that supplemental collagen may support a feeling of fullness after you eat.

5. Collagen Benefits Your Heart Health

Proline, which is found in collagen, can minimize the depositing of fat in your arteries and repair the tissues within them. Arterial fat may play a role in blood pressure and hardening of the arteries.

6. Collagen Supports Bone Formation, Growth, and Repair

Bone health is the next benefit of taking collagen, as calcium is not the only component for healthy bones. Your bones are ⅓ collagen, which gives them their flexibility. Your bone cells are constantly turning over, and adding collagen protein to your daily diet may support both health by increasing bone mineral density. Several studies have shown that osteoporosis can be impacted by supplementing with hydrolyzed collagen.4

7. Collagen Impacts Detoxification and Liver Function

The toxins we are exposed to everyday must be processed by your liver to be removed from your body. Glycine, which is found in collagen, can support your liver during the potentially damaging detoxification process – another amazing benefit of taking collagen.5

This is particularly welcome news for those of you who consume alcohol, a toxin I suggest you avoid. As if all this weren’t enough, glycine may even support a calming and restful sleep. It’s one of the reasons I love to drink collagen powder in my hot tea before bedtime.

How to Add Collagen into Your Diet

To gain the full benefits of collagen, I highly recommend supplementing your diet with plenty of this important protein. Where can you find good sources? Of course, there are collagen-rich foods (spinach, kale, tomatoes, beets, fish, and many others), and bone broth has become wildly popular in recent years as an excellent source of collagen. However, many people find it inconvenient to incorporate bone broth into their diets or go through the process of making it at home.

I take a collagen supplement every day in a convenient powder form. The Myers Way® Collagen Protein is a unique combination of amino acids in concentrated levels that promotes rapid reproduction of blood cells for healing and conditioning over other proteins, especially for bone and joint health care. Because it’s in a hydrolyzed form, you know you’re getting all the benefits of collagen in each, easy-to-take dose.

The low molecular weight protein is easily digested in just minutes after consumption. It will not congeal in cold liquids because it has been hydrolyzed for quick assimilation and improved hydration of your connective tissue.

I simply add it into my smoothie each morning or a hot cup of tea. It is a great source of protein with 12 grams per serving. It has no taste and can be added to juices or even a glass of water, making it a quick and easy way to reap the benefits of collagen. At a minimum, to help repair a leaky gut, take 1-2 rounded tablespoons per day. The many benefits of drinking collagen go far beyond “skin-deep”! With my convenient, ready-to-use powder, you can easily make it a part of your daily health regimen.

Collagen container

Benefits of Collagen FAQs

Is it OK to take collagen every day?

Yes! I take my Collagen Protein every day. Before incorporating it into your diet, however, I always recommend consulting with your healthcare practitioner with any concerns or questions you may have.

What does collagen do to your face?

Collagen benefits the appearance of your hair, skin, and nails. It can also help in reducing the appearance of cellulite and stretch marks by increasing moisture retention, boosting elasticity, and smoothing out a dimpled appearance, as well as diminish the appearance of fine lines.

How much collagen should I take daily?

To reap the full benefits of collagen protein, I recommend taking 1 scoop per day, or 1-2 rounded tablespoons per day.

Article Sources

  1. Collagen - What Is It and What Is It Good For?. Kerri-Ann Jennings. Healthline. 2020.
  2. Decreased Collagen Production in Chronically Aged Skin. James Varani, Michael K Dame, Laure Rittie, Suzanne E G Fligiel, Sewon Kang, Gary J Fisher, John J Voorhees. NCBI. 2006.
  3. 5 Evidence-Based Ways Collagen May Improve Your Hair. Lizzie Streit. Healthline. 2019.
  4. Role of Collagen Hydrolysate in Bone and Joint Disease. R W Moskowitz. NCBI. 2000.
  5. Glycine Accelerates Recovery From Alcohol-Induced Liver Injury . M Yin, K Ikejima, G E Arteel, V Seabra, B U Bradford, H Kono, I Rusyn, R G Thurman. NCBI. 1998.