Collagen peptides are a type of collagen supplement prescribed for keeping the skin healthy and reducing aches and pains in the joints. Collagen absorption by the body becomes easy when it is in the peptide form.
Collagen is an important protein that is necessary for the proper functioning of the body. It is mainly found in the connective tissue in the skin, bones and joints.
However, many people are unaware that gelatin, a product that is commonly used in food, cosmetics, and supplements, is also collagen in a processed form.
Collagen Peptides and Gelatin – What’s the difference?
Collagen peptide supplements are now very popular even though people must have even otherwise been consuming them in some foods in the form of gelatin.
The main difference between gelatin and collagen peptides is that the latter dissolves in water easily, and is digested without any difficulty.
In its undissolved form, Gelatin is not something easy to digest. It is a common ingredient in Jell-O products and may benefit those who consume Jell-O’s puddings and gelatin desserts.
But all these contain significant amounts of added sugar that can be harmful to the user.
On the contrary, collagen peptide supplements, while giving all the benefits of collagen to users, do not saddle them with unwanted sugar. Further, it also gets digested easily in the supplement form.
Vegetarians and vegans should know that collagen peptides are not vegetable products.
They are extracted from fish scales, animal bones, etc. However, for vegans, there are other effective methods for keeping their skin glowing and healthy.
How are Collagen Peptides different from Collagen?
Collagen and Collagen Peptides are similar and different at the same time. The similarity is that both are proteins. The difference is that while the former is a whole protein, the latter is splinters of the former.
Collagen peptides are obtained by breaking down animal collagen through the process of hydrolysis.
While the body cannot easily absorb collagen in its original form, it can absorb collagen peptides without much difficulty.
The bioavailability of whole collagen is very low so the body will be able to absorb only a small portion of whole collagen when it is taken as a supplement.
On the other hand, collagen peptides in supplement form are almost fully absorbed and made use of by the body.
Collagen peptides can help in rectifying problems related to the skin and bones. It can also help in producing fresh collagen. Taking these supplements is an easy path for helping collagen formation in the body.
Common Types of Collagen Peptides
Collagen peptides are generally made from meat sources like bovine bones, fish scales, fish skin, etc.
As of now, there are no plant or plant products from which collagen supplements can be sourced. Collagen peptide supplements are available in capsular form as well as powder.
Is heat bad for Collagen Peptides?
Medicines are most often recommended to be stored in a cool, dry, place. That rule is generally applicable to collagen peptide supplements also.
However, while consuming, there is no harm in putting a collagen peptide capsule into a cup of hot water or coffee.
It will not harm the supplement in any way, or reduce its effects on the user. The supplement will get damaged only if it is put in a cooking pot and boiled.
Collagen Peptides Benefits
Taking supplements of collagen peptides can benefit the user in the following ways:
- Lessens pain in the joints:
Collagen is essential for keeping the joints cushioned and flexible. It is also effective in preventing the wear and tear of cartilage that often happens with advancing age.
So, when the body has a sufficient supply of collagen, the individual is unlikely to have any discomfort related to the joints.
- Improves skin health:
Collagen helps in the retention of moisture in skin cells and keeps the skin firm. It also helps in the production of proteins like elastin and fibrillin.
All these together keep the skin supple and slow down the aging process of the skin.
- Increases muscle mass:
Collagen is an important component of muscles also. As such, supplements containing collagen peptides can help in reversing sarcopenia or the loss of skeletal muscle mass because of aging.
It helps in muscle growth and the production of creatine, the amino acid that helps in the movement and contraction of muscles.
- Strengthens heart function:
Collagen peptide supplements help in keeping arteries flexible and elastic, and prevent the thickening of blood vessels, thereby reducing the risk of heart problems.
- Prevents bone loss:
A very high percentage of bone mass is made up of collagen. Reduced production of collagen, due to advancing age, weakens bone and causes problems like osteoporosis.
Collagen peptide supplements can nullify such problems by increasing collagen production.
These supplements are also believed to help in maintaining digestive health, promoting the health of nails and hair, and controlling weight.
Are there any Side Effects of consuming Collagen Peptides?
Consumption of collagen peptides has rarely if at all, caused negative side effects in users.
However, since they are made from animal bones, shellfish, eggs, and other meat, those who are allergic to these could be sensitive to the supplement.
In rare instances, people have reported a sensation of bloating after taking the supplement.
How to consume Collagen Peptides?
It is best to take collagen peptide supplements early in the morning, as one begins their day. It can be taken with water or any drink like fruit juice or tea. Even if it is added to a drink, it will not significantly change the texture or taste of that drink.
However, sometimes a capsule may become sticky when it comes into contact with fluids, and that is an indication that the brand is not satisfactory.
How long to see Positive results from Collagen Peptides?
Collagen peptide supplements are unlikely to give instant results. As with other health supplements, they have to be given a reasonable time to produce results.
In most cases, the benefits become visible after taking the supplement regularly for two months. Including foods rich in vitamin C in the diet will help in collagen production in the body.