Collagen-Skin, Muscle, Joint, Brain and Heart Health

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“In 2018, thanks in part to a small but growing body of evidence suggesting it (collagen) can improve skin, ease arthritis symptoms, promote wound healing, and fend off muscle wasting,”

Nutritional supplementation is a matter of priorities. A person like me can ingest dozens of supplements for dozens of health reasons. The issue then becomes one of priorities. Which of my many health issues requires the most attention and what do I do about it? I am a long-term cancer survivor living with a number of late-stage side effects like chemotherapy-induced heart damage. Based on the studies linked an excerpted below, collagen (COL) addresses several of my most important issues-namely heart, bone, joint and brain health.

Cost and convenience is a close second when it comes to prioritizing supplementation. I buy Collagen (Verisol) Powder because some of the studies I read specified “verisol” as the type of collagen. In addition, I shop at my local Whole Foods regularly so this brand of collagen is convenient for me. At $16.00 for 45 daily doses of collagen, this nutritional supplementation comes to less than 45 cents a day. I can live with that.

The real test will come with my next echocardiogram. While brain, bone, joint, skin, etc. health are important to me, my main reason for supplementing with collagen is to address my chemo-induced heart damage.  For the record, it seems to me that collagen’s proven benefit is for the skin. The other benefits are less well researched. Science has a bad habit of chaning its mind. Think coffee…

I will update this post next fall when I have my next echo. Stay tuned…

Do you supplement with collagen? What is your reason for this? What has your experience been?

Thank you,

David Emerson

  • Cancer Survivor
  • Cancer Coach
  • Director PeopleBeatingCancer

Oral intake of specific bioactive collagen peptides reduces skin wrinkles and increases dermal matrix synthesis.

“Dietary consumption of food supplements has been found to modulate skin functions and can therefore be useful in the treatment of skin aging. However, there is only a limited number of clinical studies supporting these claims. In this double-blind, placebo-controlled study, the effectiveness of the specific bioactive COL peptide (BCP) VERISOL® on eye wrinkle formation and stimulation of procollagen I, elastin and fibrillin biosynthesis in the skin was assessed…

Moreover a positive long-lasting effect was observed 4 weeks after the last BCP administration (p < 0.05). Additionally, after 8 weeks of intake a statistically significantly higher content of procollagen type I (65%) and elastin (18%) in the BCP-treated volunteers compared to the placebo-treated patients was detected.

For fibrillin, a 6% increase could be determined after BCP treatment compared to the placebo, but this effect failed to reach the level of statistical significance. In conclusion, our findings demonstrate that the oral intake of specific bioactive collagen peptides (Verisol®) reduced skin wrinkles and had positive effects on dermal matrix synthesis.”

Oral Collagen Supplementation: A Systematic Review of Dermatological Applications

“Importance: The use of nutraceuticals such as collagen for skincare has been rising, but regulations are lacking on quality, absorption, and efficacy. To address this knowledge gap, clinical studies regarding the potential effects of collagen-based dietary supplements on skin are being completed.

Objective: To review the literature and assess available randomized-controlled trials using collagen supplementation for treatment efficacy regarding skin quality, anti-aging benefits, and potential application in medical dermatology.

Evidence Review: A literature search was conducted with PubMed using search criteria (collagen) AND (supplement OR food OR nutrition). No lower limit on the year of publication was set.

Inclusion criteria were: randomized, placebo-controlled trials using collagen supplementation in human subjects related to dermatology and written in English.

Findings: Eleven studies with a total of 805 patients were included for review. Eight studies used collagen hydrolysate, 2.5g/d to 10g/d, for 8 to 24 weeks, for the treatment of pressure ulcers, xerosis, skin aging, and cellulite. Two studies used collagen tripeptide, 3g/d for 4 to 12 weeks, with notable improvement in skin elasticity and hydration.

Lastly, one study using collagen dipeptide suggested anti-aging efficacy is proportionate to collagen dipeptide content.

Conclusions and Relevance: Preliminary results are promising for the short and long-term use of oral collagen supplements for wound healing and skin aging. Oral collagen supplements also increase skin elasticity, hydration, and dermal collagen density. Collagen supplementation is generally safe with no reported adverse events…”

Collagen: ‘Fountain of Youth’ or Edible Hoax?

“In 2018, thanks in part to a small but growing body of evidence suggesting it can improve skin, ease arthritis symptoms, promote wound healing, and fend off muscle wasting, U.S. consumers are expected to spend $122 million on COL products…

As a protein source alone, COL is a good one, packing in more protein per calorie than other sources while containing less sodium and sugar. And Moyad finds the evidence suggesting it may improve body composition, joint health, and healing rates intriguing.

One recent study of 53 elderly men with sarcopenia, a loss of muscle caused by aging, found that those who took 15 grams of COL daily, in addition to lifting weights three times per week for 3 months, gained significantly more muscle and lost more fat than those who only lifted weights.

Another study of 89 long-term care residents with pressure ulcers found that those who took COL supplements three times daily for 8 weeks saw their wounds heal twice as fast.

And, while research is mixed, a few studies have shown collagen supplements to help with arthritis pain and sports-related joint pain…”

Collagen May Help Protect Brain Against Alzheimer’s Disease

“Scientists have discovered that a certain type of COL, COL VI, protects brain cells against amyloid-beta proteins, which are widely thought to cause Alzheimer’s disease…”

Effect of Collagen Tripeptide on Atherosclerosis in Healthy Humans

Conclusions: The results of the present study indicate that CTP contributes to the prevention and treatment of atherosclerosis in healthy humans..”

Efficacy and tolerability of an undenatured type II collagen supplement in modulating knee osteoarthritis symptoms: a multicenter randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study

“Conclusion- UC-II improved knee joint symptoms in knee OA subjects and was well-tolerated…”


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Noella says a couple of years ago

What about the articles that say collagen and collagen peptides causes pancreatic cancer and other cancers?

    David Emerson says a couple of years ago

    HI Noella- I replied to you via email.


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