Most people want youthful skin that glows and is free of wrinkles. It’s with this goal that people pursue all sorts of anti-aging treatments and products in an effort to look younger. Most of these expensive treatments and chemically-processed products promise to replenish collagen in the skin, but many people don’t realize that there are several ways to naturally build collagen and get the youthful skin they’re desiring.
What Is Collagen?
Collagen is a common protein in the body and is found in the skin, muscles, tendons, and bones. Collagen is what holds the body together, and in the skin, it specifically contributes to the skin’s elasticity and strength.
If you’ve shopped in the beauty department, you’ve no doubt seen many lotions and creams with collagen listed as an ingredient. Trying to boost your collagen levels with these kinds of lotions and creams can be a futile effort, however, as collagen molecules tend to be large and not easily absorbed by the body.
How to Naturally Build Collagen
Even though collagen decreases with age and exposure to things like smoking and UV rays, collagen growth is unique in that the more collagen your body has, the more collagen it will produce and maintain.
Whether you’re looking to boost the collagen in your skin to look younger, or you’re taking preventative measures to maintain your youthful appearance, you have some natural options for increasing collagen production.
Aloe vera has been used for centuries as a remedy for cuts and burns, and that’s because aloe vera increases the amount of collagen your skin produces. Applying aloe vera topically can help stimulate collagen growth in the skin. You can either use pure aloe vera or products that contain aloe vera as the main ingredient.
Foods like dark, leafy greens and berries are high in antioxidants. These antioxidants help fight off the free radicals that often break down collagen in our skin, helping you maintain your collagen production in the skin.
Eat foods rich in vitamin C, as this vitamin is integral to collagen production. If you’re low on vitamin C, your body will definitely have trouble synthesizing collagen, so try to consume vitamin C-rich foods like oranges, bell peppers, cauliflower, broccoli, strawberries, tomatoes, and cabbage.
Believe it or not, your workout can help you boost collagen. When you exercise, you get your heart rate up and get more blood flow going. The increased blood flow helps deliver vital nutrients to the fibroblast cells in your skin, which are responsible for producing collagen.
If you’re looking for a way to not just stimulate collagen production but directly consume dietary collagen, give bone both a try. Bone broth is rich in collagen, and consuming collagen directly in this manner is an effective way to increase collagen levels in the body.
What to Stay Away From
In order to preserve the collagen in your skin and prevent any damage, you should avoid certain things in your everyday routine. Harmful habits like smoking, consuming a high amount of sugar, or spending a lot of time in the sun (without protective sunscreen) can all hurt the collagen in your body and decrease your collagen production.
It’s natural to experience a loss of collagen as you age, but using some of the natural methods shared here and not partaking in harmful practices can help you achieve and maintain more youthful-looking skin.
5 Ways to Boost Collagen. (n.d.). Retrieved March 20, 2018, from https://www.healthline.com/health/ways-to-boost-collagen#ginseng
McIntosh, J. (2017, June 16). Collagen: What is it and what are its uses? Retrieved March 20, 2018, from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/262881.php
Can Working Out Double as a Face Lift? (2017, April 14). Retrieved March 20, 2018, from https://www.womenshealthmag.com/fitness/how-working-out-can-help-your-skin-look-younger
How to Produce Collagen Naturally. (2013, December 06). Retrieved March 20, 2018, from http://www.med-health.net/how-to-produce-collagen-naturally.html
Petrucci, K. (2015, June 05). 5 Foods To Naturally Build Collagen For Glowing, Youthful Skin. Retrieved March 20, 2018, from https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-20060/5-foods-to-naturally-build-collagen-for-glowing-youthful-skin.html