Collagen makes up 30% of the protein in the body and constitutes 70% of protein within the skin. Located within the dermis (below the outermost layer of skin,) collagen is the foundation of connective tissue that supports skin’s structure. As we age, the natural weakening in cellular activity and increase in environmental stressors break down this structural framework, resulting in loose, thin and frail skin.
Although there are many topical products and treatments used to stimulate collagen production, cellular renewal takes place within those deeper dermal layers, having many experts believe a topical and nutritional approach will provide best results for healthy skin aging.
Collagen contains the amino acids glycine, proline, alanine and hydroxyproline.
By adding certain protein rich foods to your diet, you can promote a healthier rate of collagen renewal and protect your skin from premature aging. Mineral copper that is found in nuts, raisins, sweet potatoes, kidney beans, lobster and oysters facilitates collagen production and therefore should be included in your diet. Lastly, be sure to include foods rich in Vitamin C as it is essential for collagen synthesis.
Top collagen boosting foods include;
Eggs (particularly egg whites)
Cod, crab, lobster, oysters
Oranges, tomatoes, lemons, bell peppers, sweet potatoes
Sunflower and sesame seeds, Almonds, Raisins
Azuki, Kidney and Soybeans, Chickpeas
Choose antioxidant rich foods to help ward off damaging free radicals that break down collagen. Include Green tea, Blackberries, Black Currants, Blueberries, Wild Blueberries, Plums, Purple Figs, Purple Grapes Vegetables: Beets, Egg plant skin, Purple Asparagus, Purple Cabbage
If you lead a hectic lifestyle, consider supplementation to ensure you are getting all nutrients required for healthy skin.
In addition to diet, focus on a healthy lifestyle. Smoking, pollution, stress, and chronic sun exposure destroy collagen and can inhibit the skins cellular renewal cycle. Instead, include circulatory exercise daily as this stimulates blood flow bringing nutrients and oxygen to the dermal layer for healthy skin.
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