If you’ve been around a while, you’ve probably heard me talk about collagen, its benefits, and that it comes from cows, fish, and chicken. Yet, one of the lesser talked about types of collagen is eggshell membrane collagen. Yet, the eggshell membrane collagen benefits are many and essential to promote the production of types V and X collagen.
Type V collagen plays a role in childbirth and forms in your skin, hair, and the cornea of your eyes. Type X collagen is found in the cartilage of your joints and promotes bone formation, and you can only find these two types of collagen in eggshell membranes.
I’m going to tell you all about eggshell membrane collagen benefits, what eggshell membrane collagen is, and why you should include it in your daily regimen! Before I get into eggshell membrane collagen, let’s talk briefly about the incredible egg.
The Incredible Egg
Eggs are a nutritional powerhouse. Yes, eggs are a source of cholesterol, which often gets a bad reputation. Yet cholesterol is actually vital to your health. Cholesterol is found in your skin and is needed to synthesize vitamin D. Every cell in your body contains cholesterol. However, eggs are inflammatory, especially if you are on the autoimmune spectrum.
Eggs are also a good source of quality protein: a large egg may contain 6.28 grams of protein. A single egg could satisfy about 12% of your daily protein needs.1 Protein is vital for optimal health as your body uses it to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals and build your bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood. Eggs also contain vitamins and minerals, especially collagen.
My approach to chicken eggs is pretty straightforward: They may be inflammatory for those on the autoimmune spectrum or with a full-blown autoimmune disease because they contain various bioactive compounds that impact inflammation. If you have completed an elimination diet and found that you can tolerate eggs, then, by all means, enjoy them. Most people in optimal health can eat up to seven eggs a week without increasing their risk of heart disease. However, if you are on the autoimmune spectrum, then you should avoid eggs in your diet.
While egg whites and yolks are excellent sources of collagen, the collagen found in eggshell membranes often gets overlooked. I will tell you about eggshell membrane collagen benefits and why you should add this source of collagen to your diet. Let’s dive in!
What is Eggshell Membrane Collagen?
There are 28 known types of collagen in your body, yet five types offer the most benefits. I’ll talk about those in just a bit. Eggshell membrane collagen is in the membranes of hen eggs. The membrane is the layer between the hard eggshell and the egg white.
These collagen-rich membranes separate the eggshell from the egg white and work as a defense mechanism to protect the egg from bacterial invasions. Although eggshell membranes appear thin and delicate, they are surprisingly strong and resilient and contain type I collagen and V and X. As I mentioned earlier, eggshell membranes are the only sources of types V and X. Let’s look at the different types of collagen.
Type I collagen is the most common type, accounting for 90% of your body’s total collagen, and is in the layer of skin just below the surface. This collagen is a big reason your skin is tough yet flexible. Your skin consists of layers and constantly regenerates new cells, and type I collagen facilitates this process.
Type I collagen provides structure to your skin, bones, joints, cartilage, and teeth. It is the collagen that supports healthy skin, hair, and nails. However, as you age, your skin loses elasticity and wrinkles because this type of collagen breaks down.
The primary difference between type I and type II is that type II is not tightly packed together. This type of collagen supports your joints and bones because it produces substances that promote a healthy inflammation response in your joints.2 It targets your joints and connective tissues to restore a healthy, smooth range of motion, and also contains chondroitin and glucosamine, which help rebuild cartilage in joints.3
This type of collagenis different from the other types because it consists of only one collagen alpha chain instead of multiple chains. This type of collagen contains three alpha chains supercoiled around each other and supports your gut, muscles, blood vessels, and the uterus in women. Because type III collagen is so involved in our major organ systems, it also plays a prominent role in inflammation-related diseases.4
Type V & X
Type V collagen helps form cell membranes and the tissue found in a woman’s placenta, which is essential for embryo development. It’s also found in layers of the skin and hair as well as in the cornea of the eye. Type X, described as network-forming collagen, plays a crucial role in bone formation and is found in joint cartilage.
While each type of collagen has an array of benefits, let’s take a look at the benefits of eggshell membrane collagen.
Benefits of Eggshell Membrane Collagen
What benefits can this membrane substance found in eggs have? Well, as with most types of collagen, it supports your joints, skin, gut, hair, and the rest of your connective tissues. The cartilage in your joints is about 95% made from collagen. Eggshell membrane collagen also gives your skin its firmness. It supports the barrier function of your skin, which is what protects your body from outside invaders such as bacteria and viruses. Here are the benefits of eggshell membrane collagen in more detail.
It Promotes Joint Health
Your joints are held together by a strong, flexible connective tissue called cartilage. Collagen is an essential component of cartilage, making it necessary to prevent joint pain, stiffness, degenerative joint disorders, and injury. As I mentioned, 95% of the cartilage in your joints is made from collagen. As your collagen production slows with age, your joints may become stiff, painful, and swollen. Collagen contains amino acids glycine and proline, which promote a healthy inflammatory response and supports joint mobility.
It Supports Gut Health
Collagen contains eight of the nine essential amino acids. A vital amino acid is one you can only get through your diet, whereas nonessential amino acids are ones your body makes on its own. Collagen consists of three nonessential amino acids in collagen – glycine, glutamine, and proline. Glycine, glutamine, and proline are also essential for a healthy gut.
Glutamine can get depleted from trauma and irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS. Glutamine is fundamental to gut health because it supports and promotes a healthy gut barrier essential for repairing a leaky gut. Glycine facilitates the rebuilding of tissue that lines the digestive tract, while proline seals the gut lining and promotes nutrient absorption.
It is Essential for Your Skin
For a good reason, collagen is in quite a few skincare products these days. Collagen promotes a healthy aging process by improving your skin’s elasticity and ability to retain moisture. It also stimulates the production of additional fibrin and elastic proteins, which are vital for healthy skin. Since eggshell membrane collagen contains type V & X collagen, it also helps smooth out fine lines and wrinkles to give your skin a more youthful appearance.
It Promotes Optimal Weight
Glycine, the amino acid I’ve mentioned a few times, forms muscle by converting glycogen into glucose for energy. Essentially, collagen benefits your body by turning it into a fat-burning machine, even when you’re at rest. Some evidence suggests that supplemental collagen may support a feeling of fullness after you eat. After all, collagen is a protein, and one of the benefits of protein is that it makes you feel fuller longer.
Eggshell membranes are the only natural source of Type V and Type X collagen that supports your joint health and optimal weight, improves your skin, and supports gut health. Now that you know the benefits let me tell you why you’d want to supplement with a high-quality collagen powder containing eggshell membrane collagen.
Why You Should Supplement Eggshell Membrane Collagen
Collagen is often called the “glue” that holds your body together, providing support, structure, and strength in your bones, tendons, ligaments, teeth, and skin. Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body.
However, your collagen production diminishes when you are under stress, chronically ill, and as you get older. In fact, at about age 35, your body’s collagen production begins to slow. By age 40, collagen begins to deplete faster than your body can produce. Moreover, over half of your body’s collagen is depleted by age 60. As natural collagen production in your body declines with age, our connective tissues, including our tendons and ligaments, lose flexibility. This causes stiff and painful joints.
Although eggs are rich in collagen, cooking your eggs denatures the membranes and diminishes the amount of collagen you’ll consume. My No. 1 choice to ensure I’m getting optimal amounts of types V & X collagen is Spectrum 5 Collagen™. Let me tell you about it!
The Best Eggshell Membrane Collagen
The best way to get egg collagen is by using a high-quality eggshell membrane collagen supplement from free-range hens’ eggs. This ensures you do not get exposed to antibiotics or GMOs. Combining eggshell membrane collagen with other sources of collagen, such as marine, chicken, and bovine, offers a full spectrum of benefits.
The truth is that most collagen products on the market do not contain all five types of essential collagen, especially eggshell membrane collagen. That’s why I spent years pouring over research to formulate the first-ever multi-collagen formulated by a medical doctor. I call it Spectrum 5 Collagen™
Spectrum 5 Collagen™ is a multi-collagen peptide powder containing all five collagen types, including eggshell membrane collagen. It is the most complete collagen complex available on the market.
Spectrum 5 Collagen™ contains optimal levels of types I, II, and III collagen to facilitate optimal gut health, hair, skin, nails, and cartilage formation. It also contains hydrolyzed type V Marine Collagen to support healthy lean muscle, skin elasticity, and intestinal tissue integrity. That’s not all! Spectrum 5 Collagen™ also contains the regenerative type X collagen found in eggshell membranes to support skin hydration, flexible joints, and healthy inflammatory response.
The Final Word
Eggshell membrane collagen benefits are abundant for a small piece of membrane skin found inside an eggshell. I recommend supplementing your diet with a collagen powder that contains eggshell membrane collagen. I take Spectrum 5 Collagen™ every day to reap all the benefits, such as supporting my gut and joint health. It’s so easy to mix into a smoothie, your morning coffee, or a hot tea!
- Associations of Dietary Cholesterol or Egg Consumption With Incident Cardiovascular Disease and Mortality. Victor W Zhong, et al. JAMA Internal Medicine. 2019.
- Effects of orally administered undenatured type II collagen against arthritic inflammatory diseases: a mechanistic exploration. D Bagchi, et al. International Journal of Clinical Pharmacology Research. 2002.
- Collagen Type II. MedicineNet. 2021.
- Biochemistry of Collagens, Laminins and Elastin. M.J.Nielsen & M.A.Karsdal. Nordic Bioscience. 2016.