What is hydrolized collagen?

Written by wendy travis
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Hydrolyzed collagen has been used for years as a food product. Recent research on hydrolyzed collagen has offered a host of new uses for this important ingredient. Today, hydrolyzed collagen is found in everything from bodybuilding supplements to skin care products. The substance has also been touted for its medicinal value in treating burns, painful joints and a variety of skin conditions.

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History

Hydrolyzed collagen has been used by doctors and hospitals for a variety of treatments since it was patented in the 1970s. However, the history of hydrolyzed collagen goes back decades further as a gelatin product used in cooking. In addition to its many other uses today, hydrolyzed collagen is still used as a gelatin food product. It is also commonly found in the coating on many capsules containing medication.

Function

Collagen is a main substance found in humans, accounting for one-fourth of all the protein in the body. Collagen bonds together the underlying structure of the body, including the bones, ligaments and muscles. As we age, our bodies produce less collagen, which accounts for sagging skin and the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Collagen supplementation is helpful in the middle to later years of life, to maintain healthy collagen production and younger, firmer skin.

Benefits

Hydrolyzed collagen in its various forms can provide a host of benefits for the body. As a liquid supplement, collagen aids in weight loss by stimulating the production of human growth hormone or HGH. This hormone helps the body convert fat to energy. It is also used by bodybuilders for this reason. Some studies suggest hydrolyzed collagen supplements might be beneficial in reducing pain and stiffness associated with arthritis. A double-blind study at Harvard University School of Medicine showed significant improvement in patients with rheumatoid arthritis who took daily doses of hydrolyzed collagen. The study was published in the medical journal Science in 1993. The substance enhances the skin's appearance and has been used by hospitals for some time in treating burns and other skin conditions. Hydrolyzed collagen is also known for effectively strengthening and improving the appearance of hair and nails.

Types

Hydrolyzed collagen comes in a variety of forms. One of the most common types of collagen supplements is a liquid that can be taken alone or added to water. It can also be found in tablet or powder form. Hydrolyzed collagen is also found in topical solutions for the face, hair and nail. It is commonly found in anti-ageing products. Consumers can find products containing hydrolyzed collagen from beauty supply retailers and supplement shops. Bodybuilding websites also offer hydrolyzed collagen supplements.

Considerations

Edible hydrolyzed collagen supplements have not been found to cause unwanted side effects or drug interactions. However, topical applications containing hydrolyzed collagen may cause skin irritation in sensitive individuals. It is advisable to test topical solutions on a small area of skin first to make sure irritation does not result. Women who are pregnant or nursing should consult with a doctor before taking hydrolyzed collagen supplements.

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