Throughout history, people have sought out the mythical fountain of youth, and although we haven’t discovered the secret to immortality just yet, science has made us aware of one of nature’s remarkable helpers. Marine collagen is a natural protein, derived from sustainable marine life, which has gained immense popularity in the world of skincare and anti-aging. In this article we explore the marine collagen benefits and how it can help you achieve a youthful appearance and enjoy optimal health.
Table of Contents
Collagen can be thought of as the glue that holds you together. Your body makes collagen by combining amino acids which are proteins largely derived from food. Collagen is present in skin, hair, joints, bones, tendons, nails, and the digestive system. It is collagen which is responsible for the structure, texture, strength, elasticity and resilience of the skin which covers your body and the skin which lines all of your internal tracts.
To manufacture its own collagen your body needs a mixture of amino acids. There are eleven amino acids which your body can make, and nine essential amino acids which can only be obtained from your diet. Foods which contain all of them are known as complete proteins. They are fish, poultry, beef, eggs, dairy, soy, quinoa and buckwheat. Foods which contain some, but not all the essential amino acids, are called incomplete proteins.
Collagen is mainly made from three non-essential amino acids called proline, glycine and hydroxyproline. Although our body makes its own collagen, by the time we reach the age of twenty, natural production begins to reduce, and from then on, signs of ageing gradually begin to show. By eighty years of age, we have about 30% of the collagen we had when we were in our twenties.
A diet which is rich in seafood will provide a certain amount of collagen-boosting nutrients, but choosing fish such as sardines and anchovies, where you can eat the skin and bones as well as the flesh, will provide higher amounts of collagen. When buying salmon, go for wild rather than farmed, and with white fish if you can eat the skin too then that will help. If you decide to choose the dietary route to boost your collagen levels, rather than using a supplement, the fish which is highest in collagen is sardine.
Marine Collagen Benefits
Recently research has focussed on marine organisms as promising sources of collagen because, unlike porcine and bovine sources, they have no issues of use for any religious reasons. The use of marine by-catch from the harvest of the sea makes good use of certain sea creatures which might otherwise be discarded, making the extraction of marine collagen a worthwhile environmental project.
High collagen content is found in a variety of marine species such as the skin, scales and bones of fish, sea urchins and by-catch organisms such as jellyfish, sponges and starfish.
Marine Collagen for Skin
Collagen plays a star role in the health of your skin, helping to keep it strong and providing elasticity which also has the effect of holding at bay or smoothing out those fine lines and wrinkles.
In more clinical terms, research has found from several studies on skin-wound healing that marine collagen isolated from sea creatures such as jellyfish and sponges has potential for increasing wound healing rates. As well as skin healing, marine collagen has been found to have anti-ageing properties by slowing down the rate at which skin deteriorates due to age. It was found to ‘reduce wrinkles, improve skin elasticity and enhance the overall structure and appearance of the skin.’
Collagen for Hair
A healthy head of hair depends greatly on collagen for its strength and general health. Hair is largely made up of the protein keratin which is produced from a combination of several amino acids, some of which are found in collagen.
Proline is the main component of keratin, so proline-rich collagen will boost the health and strength of your hair.
Collagen for Joints
As we age, joint pain and stiffness can become a daily struggle. Because marine collagen has anti-inflammatory properties it can help reduce joint pain, while at the same time supporting cartilage health and preventing age related ailments such as osteoarthritis. By promoting tissue repair and healing, marine collagen helps keep joints strong and mobile.
Research has concluded that there is compelling evidence that collagen supplementation inhibits bone collagen breakdown and eases the painful symptoms of degenerative joint conditions. These findings suggest that collagen supplementation is a safe and therapeutic means of managing symptoms of osteoarthritis and osteoporosis.
Dental and Bone Health
Marine collagen strengthens teeth, promotes gum health, and aids in maintaining strong bones and improved bone density. Although teeth themselves are not made of bone, collagen is essential for the health of the periodontium which is the structure of gums and bone that support and surround your teeth.
Periodontal tissue is composed of collagen which makes up gingival tissue and periodontal ligaments which connect teeth into the jawbones. Although nothing is more important than a conscientious cleaning and flossing routine, keeping an age-defying set of teeth well into senior years is also dependent on strong periodontal ligaments and healthy gingival tissue.
Strong and Supple Tendons
Due to their high percentage of collagen, tendons can endure resistance from high-impact stress, which helps to reduce the risk of injury, particularly when taking part in sporting activities.
A recently published study in the journal Frontiers in Physiology from Liverpool John Moores University, led by Robert Erskine, reported that female soccer players found big improvements in tendon stiffness after taking collagen supplements three times a week.
Marine collagen strengthens brittle nails, preventing breakage and ensuring they remain strong and healthy. Two of the amino acids present in collagen, and essential for nail growth, are arginine and proline. Arginine provides nutrients and oxygen to tissue, such as that in the nail bed and roots. Proline is responsible for the production of keratin which is vital for nail health.
Marine collagen supports digestive health and improves gut function so as well as keeping you feeling and looking good on the outside, collagen also plays a major role in strengthening and thickening intestinal mucosa, which is the lining of the gut. If the lining of your intestines becomes thin, this condition may lead to thyroid and adrenal disorders.
Immune System and Post-Exercise Recovery
A strong immune system is vital for overall well-being, and marine collagen can give it a much-needed boost which helps you fight off illnesses. Additionally, it aids in post-workout recovery, accelerating muscle repair and reducing the inflammation that is often the result of rigorous exercise.
Marine Collagen Supplements
Much like other forms of collagen, marine collagen can help delay some of the signs of ageing such as wrinkles, joint problems, weakened hair and nails. Besides these anti-ageing advantages, marine collagen also gives an alternative to those who may have issues with using bovine or porcine- derived collagen for religious or other ethical or medical reasons.
Collagen is a safe supplement with very few side effects. Some people may experience mild digestive upset such as bloating and diarrhoea. It is a protein, and the usual recommended and effective intake is around 3-9 grams a day.
If you have allergies to fish or shellfish, you should not choose marine collagen.
Our Collagen Beauty Blend uses Peptan F2000 marine collagen peptides. Peptan F2000 is MSC certified and uses 100% wild caught, white ocean fish.
Ten Key takeaways
- Marine collagen is a natural protein derived from fish, fish skins and scales.
- It promotes a youthful appearance by reducing wrinkles and maintaining skin elasticity.
- Marine collagen benefits include strengthening hair and promoting hair growth.
- It supports joint health, reducing pain and preventing age-related ailments.
- Marine collagen improves dental health and bone strength.
- It promotes tendon and cartilage health.
- Marine collagen improves nail growth and prevents breakage.
- It supports the digestive system and helps avoid and eliminate digestive discomfort.
- Marine collagen enhances the immune system and aids in post-exercise recovery.
- Including marine collagen supplements in your daily diet can reduce the effects of ageing, both in terms of appearance and mobility.
When it comes to keeping you informed on health and nutrition, we’re here for you and aim to help where we can. If you would like to discuss any aspect of using natural supplements, or would find advice helpful, please feel free to contact us on 01297 553932.