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If you’ve heard about the trend of using collagen protein, you may be aware of some of the benefits. You may also wonder how does collagen help you lose weight. There are a few key ways collagen can help you lose weight. These include:
- Collagen can help you feel fuller, so you might eat less.
- Collagen can help you avoid injuries and aches and pains that could prevent you from working out.
- Taking a collagen supplement may help reduce your appetite
- There is some evidence using a collagen supplement can help you retain muscle mass which will allow you to be leaner and burn more calories
While that gives you a quick answer to the question of how does collagen help you lose weight, there’s more to it than that. The following gives you an overview of how collagen helps you lose weight, but also more details about using a collagen supplement such as other benefits it can have for your health and appearance.
What is Collagen?
Before delving into the details that answer “how does collagen help you lose weight,” what exactly is it and why is it one of the most popular supplement trends right now?
Collagen is the most abundant naturally-occurring protein in our bodies. Collagen is what helps structure our bones, ligaments and tendons. It helps with fluid movement and it also plays a role in the health and appearance of your hair, skin and nails. While collagen is in our bodies naturally, aging and stress can impact our collagen production, so many people opt to supplement with collagen protein to make up for this loss.
Collagen includes different amino acids like arginine, glycine, proline and hydroxyproline. These help our bones, skin, connective tissues and hair and nails remain healthy.
When you buy a collagen protein supplement, it’s different from the traditional types of protein you might use as a post-workout snack. For example, whey and casein protein powders don’t have the number of amino acids you’ll find in a collagen protein.
There is evidence that using a collagen supplement can have visible benefits. For example, a study in 2014 looked at 69 women who ranged in age from 35 to 55. These women took either 2.5 grams or 5 grams of collagen every day for eight weeks. There were significant improvements in skin elasticity compared to the women who didn’t use it. Another study looked at women who took one gram of collagen derived from chickens for 12 weeks. They showed fewer visible wrinkles and less dryness of the skin.
With that being said, research on the use of collagen supplements is still fairly limited because many of these products are relatively new on the market. As a protein source, many medical professionals do feel collagen is beneficial. It has more protein per calorie than other sources, and also less sugar and sodium.
Most forms of collagen protein supplements are hydrolyzed, so the collagen is broken down, which makes it more absorbable.
What Are the Benefits of Collagen Supplements?
The following provides more details about the potential benefits of taking a collagen supplement.
Collagen Supplements Can Help Improve Skin Health
Collagen plays a vital role in the health of your skin. In particular, collagen boosts hydration and elasticity. As we get older, our body produces less collagen, which can lead to dryer skin and more wrinkles.
With collagen supplements, it’s possible to improve the overall appearance of skin and reduce dryness and wrinkle appearance and depth.
Relief from Joint Paint
Collagen can help your cartilage, which is what protects your joints. When you get older, and your natural collagen production slows, then you are more at risk for the development of joint disorders such as osteoarthritis.
Some studies indicate collagen supplements can help with the symptoms of osteoarthritis and may relieve joint pain.
For the treatment of joint pain or symptoms of osteoarthritis, a dosage of anywhere from eight to 12 grams a day is recommended.
Promote Heart and Cardiovascular Health
Heart conditions and illnesses related to the cardiovascular system are a significant issue among the population in the United States. Collagen supplements may help lower the risk of developing or experiencing a heart-related condition because it helps strengthen the arteries so they can effectively transport blood to the heart.
Some believe the use of collagen supplements can help with gut and digestive symptoms such as leaky gut syndrome. There currently isn’t a lot of reliable research on this collagen benefit, but antidotally people feel using collagen is help for them.
So what about weight loss? How does collagen help you lose weight?
Reason #1 Collagen Helps You Lose Weight: It Helps You Feel Fuller
One of the most direct ways collagen can help you lose weight is because it can help you feel fuller for longer. A lot of people use other types of protein powders to help them lose weight in this way, but they might not be as good as collagen protein because they can have fillers or more calories. Collagen is considered a clean form of protein to help promote the feeling of fullness.
In one study that looked at the benefits of using collagen to lose weight, hunger hormones were assessed in ten people who were obese and ten people considered normal weight. The use of gelatin, which is derived from collagen, improved the satiety hormone. The satiety hormone helped subjects in the study stick with their weight loss diet.
Basically, when you feel fuller for longer, then you’re less likely to eat too much. You may also be less likely to give in to unhealthy cravings when you feel satisfied. Other studies have found similar results which provide an answer to how does collagen help you lose weight.
Reason #2 Collagen Helps You Lose Weight: Promotes Healthy Activity Levels
Part of losing weight is being active and burning calories. To stay active, you need a body that’s strong, and you need to work to avoid injuries or pain that could keep you from getting exercise. Using a collagen supplement can provide support for your joints and bones, reducing pain and improving range of motion and mobility.
Collagen also has an amino acid called arginine. This helps promote healthy circulation because it relaxes the blood vessels. Arginine can also help promote strength and recovery.
Reason #3 Collagen Helps You Lose Weight: Maintaining Muscle Mass
When we get older, we lose muscle mass naturally, and it’s replaced with fat. There are ways to combat this, such as exercising and doing weight training. Additionally, there is some evidence that the use of a collagen supplement can help in the maintenance of lean muscle mass. When you have more muscle mass, your body also burns calories more quickly.
There you have it—the primary reasons collagen can help you lose weight.
If you would like to learn more about collagen supplements, check out our post on Ancient Nutrition’s Multi Collagen Protein Powder, which has multiple key sources of amino acids and collagen proteins.