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Choose Collagen Supplements Wisely

Collagen has become one of the most popular health supplements in the world. It’s rapidly becoming one of the most controversial health supplements.

Collagen makes up approximately 30 percent of the proteins within the body, which makes it the most abundant protein in the human body. It is in skin, muscle, bone, and connective tissues. It plays a key role in joint health and skin health. Some describe it as the glue that holds the body together. Collagen is composed of amino acids, which include carbon, oxygen and hydrogen. It contains glycine, proline, hydroxyproline and arginine. 

As we age, our body produces less collagen, which is why many people consume collagen pills, powders and drinks. They hope to reduce wrinkles, increase muscle mass, prevent bone loss and relieve joint pain. Many former fans are backing away. Some reject animal-based products because of animal welfare issues and the potential of prion disease transmission. Some of those who made the switch to marine-based collagen are experiencing allergic or toxic reactions. These risks and reactions may not be worth it when you consider that we can increase the production of collagen within our own bodies by eating the right foods.

Collagen supplements are sourced from the body parts of mammals and fish.

Collagen is in the hair, skin, nails, bones, and ligaments of animals, including beef and fish. Although bovine collagen has long been assumed to be a safe and biocompatible material, dermatologists should be aware of the theoretical potential for prion transmission when the tissue from cows are used.

Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative disorders. New forms of these diseases have appeared in both animals and humans. There is no such thing as a species barrier when it comes to prion disease—clinically known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). Many practices once considered safe demand a  review as the prion pandemic surges and spreads around the world. The use of animal by-products for the production of collagen is one of those practices. Prion contamination is impossible to stop. In a production facility, a small amount of prion contamination will contaminate everything downstream forever, including the product, the consumer and more. Why take the risk when safer alternatives exist. Collagen supplements that come from marine sources instead of bovine (cows) sources have become popular because they minimize the health risks and issues associated with animal products.

Produce More Collagen In Your Body

Don’t despair about the risks associated with collagen. Promoting collagen production within your body through plant-based foods and fish can help promote longevity and vibrancy, while improving the health of hair, skin, and nails.

There are herbs, super foods and vitamins that can improve, strengthen, and prolong the health of our skin. For example, spinach, kale, Swiss chard, and other salad greens contain chlorophyll. Studies have shown that consuming chlorophyll increases the precursor to collagen in the skin.

Vitamin C is one of the primary nutrients involved in collagen synthesis. Eating foods rich in vitamin C and amino acids can increase the levels of hyaluronic acid and collagen in the body as both are important for skin. Red peppers, tomatoes, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries and blueberries, for example, are very high in vitamin C. When used in conjunction with vitamin E, it is even more powerful.

Zinc is one of the essential ingredients to collagen production. If you rely on beef or beef broth for zinc, think again. Beef is a potential prion pathway. The entire body of a cow is infected, if and when infected. Avoid the risk.

Avocado oil is a natural antioxidant. The oil also offers anti-inflammatory effects. When looking for avocado oil, look for oil made from the seeds. They’re said to have the most collagen-boosting effects. Other beneficial foods include:

  • Amino acids (protein)
  • Aloe vera
  • Chicken
  • Cinnamon
  • Citrus fruits
  • Dill
  • Egg whites
  • Garlic
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Legumes
  • Licorice
  • Pomegranate
  • Red and yellow vegetables
  • Salmon/fish/oysters
  • Silica
  • Turmeric
  • White tea

One study suggests that hyaluronic acid can help boost collagen production in the human body. Hyaluronic acid is naturally found in the body, but it decreases as we age.

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Avatar Gary Chandler

Author: Gary Chandler

Gary Chandler is a prion expert. He is the CEO of Crossbow Communications, author of several books and producer of documentaries about health and environmental issues around the world. Chandler is connecting the dots to the global surge in neurodegenerative disease, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and other forms of prion disease.