Loading...
BYH, offering someone something temporary for something permanent isn't a proposal, it's a con. Offering someone...

Research limited on collagen peptides

KathyKolasa

Kathy Kolasa

Loading…

Kathy Kolasa

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Q I got a text from a patient this morning that said, “It seems that collagen peptides, packets that you would add to any liquid, are the going thing. Would I benefit from using such a product?” I think it sounds like an expensive protein supplement. Do you have any info on that? Thanks. — Dr. J

A Catherine Thriveni, a third-year Brody medical student, found your question challenging and wanted to give you a clear answer. Here is what she wants you to know.

You may recognize the word “collagen” from the variety of anti-aging health and beauty products displayed at the drugstore: anti-wrinkle face creams, skin-firming body lotions, lip-plumping glosses. Collagen injections are also commonly used to smooth face lines and enhance thinning lips. It’s as though this substance contains the essence of the fountain of youth. But a recent trend involves collagen as a dietary supplement, taken as capsules or as a powder that can be mixed into beverages. You may be wondering what this new fad is about and what the potential benefits are.

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. It strengthens muscles and bones, and it keeps joints working smoothly. It also provides elasticity that makes skin firm and smooth. Our bodies’ natural collagen stores decrease with age, and this process can be made worse by sun damage, smoking and air pollution. Loss of collagen manifests as wrinkles, face lines, joint pain and muscle soreness. Some medicines like NSAIDs interfere with healthy collagen production in the body, so it’s best to avoid long-term use of NSAIDs if you don’t need them.

The type of collagen some people, including actress Jennifer Aniston, are currently raving about is called hydrolyzed collagen. It is derived from the bone and cartilage of cows, pigs and fish. The collagen is then broken down into amino acids — the building blocks of protein that are more easily absorbed in the body — and made into a powder. This powder can be mixed into beverages such as coffee and smoothies.

It’s also marketed as a protein supplement because a two-scoop serving contains about 18 grams of protein. However, it’s worth noting that this is incomplete protein because it does not contain all the amino acids needed by the body. Hydrolyzed collagen is also sold as capsules to take daily. Some of the benefits these products claim include glowing skin, shiny hair, strong nails and healthy bones and joints. But how true are these claims?

Regarding the benefits to skin and nails, some studies document positive results. In a 2014 study published in Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, women took 2.5 grams of a brand name oral collagen peptide supplement once a day. After eight weeks, researchers measured a 20 percent decrease in the depth of wrinkles around the women’s eyes, and that difference was clearly visible. In another study with similar supplementation, women’s fingernails grew 12 percent faster than before. These women also reported fingernail breakage decreased from 10 times a month to six times a month after 24 weeks of treatment.

The effects on joint health are also noteworthy. In 2012, researchers examined the effect of taking a 10 mg daily dose of an oral collagen supplementation on the pain levels experienced by five female patients with osteoarthritis. Four of five women reported their pain dropped an average of 26 percent after 42 days of supplementation. It is useful to note that patients in studies of pain often experience a placebo effect.

But the research is still limited, and it remains unclear exactly how collagen supplementation improves skin, nail and joint health. Some researchers suggest the peptides are easily absorbed, make their way to the skin and nails, and help produce new collagen. Those who study joint health believe collagen supplements reduce inflammation. Clearly, much more research is needed to determine if the results of these small studies can be replicated.

There are a few things to be wary of when considering collagen peptide supplementation. As with any supplement, these products are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.. Because these supplements are mostly derived from animal bones, which can be a source of lead, it’s possible they contain heavy metal contaminants. However, there is not much evidence to suggest these powders are a risk for heavy metal exposure.

Nevertheless, it is important to choose a supplement checked for contaminants by a credible third-party consumer safety group, like NSF. Also make sure you’re not allergic to eggs or any other ingredients in powder. The habit can also become a bit pricey since it takes four to eight weeks to see any benefit and it seems like you would need to continue to take the supplements. One brand, for example, offers two weeks’ worth of supplement for $25; some are even more expensive. Using the supplement regularly may get to be expensive.

If you are interested in trying a collagen supplement for two to three months, the health risks appear to be minimal, and there may be benefits. Discuss this with your doctor or dietitian before beginning. Some skin experts say if you’re trying to keep your youthful glow, stick with what research has proven works: a healthy diet, sun protection, anti-aging moisturizer, adequate water consumption and no smoking. It is likely that if collagen supplements work you would need to take them long term. At this time, we don’t know if taking the supplements long term has good, bad or indifferent effects.

Professor emeritus Kathy Kolasa, a registered dietitian nutritionist and Ph.D., is an Affiliate Professor in the Brody School of Medicine at ECU. Contact her at kolasaka@ecu.edu.

Loading…

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Look

January 18, 2019

AYDEN — Rudy Robinson was a builder in life.

He built and rebuilt homes. He restored buildings and put businesses in them.

He operated several businesses that brought him and his family financial success. He rented to others, both commercially and residentially. He was adept at it. He worked…

0116-oakley-rudy.jpg

January 16, 2019

Q I form oxalate stones. The only advice I had been given was to drink lots of water and I do drink about a gallon a day. A friend told me I should pay attention to the oxalate content of food. I really like grain products but have been told they might be giving me troubles. What do I need to know?…

Kolasa, Kathy

January 13, 2019

While I have been traveling up and down North Carolina’s roads in search of local eateries, UNC Law School professor Gene Nichol has been traveling the same roads looking for something else.

I was gathering material for my book, “North Carolina’s Roadside Eateries,” and…

DGMartin

January 13, 2019

The first mistake was opening the refrigerator door. I opened it silently, but it emits a silent sound unknown to science that only cats can hear. From under the bedcovers at the other end of the house. And they do not need to walk or run to the refrigerator to inspect what I'm doing. One second,…

JimMullen

January 11, 2019

As I write this review, it’s still up in the air whether Kevin Hart will host this year’s Academy Awards. He was picked because he’s funny, he’s a performer of color, and his star was on the ascendance.

But someone dug up old comments by Hart that were homophobic. The…

Upside

January 11, 2019

ARBA — Sybil Thomas is not your average “little old lady.”

Rather than bemoaning the aging process, she has walked right up to it, looked it dead in the eye and given it an impish wink.

Thomas celebrated her 100th birthday Dec. 30, surrounded by friends and family at Hull Road…

0109-sybil2.jpg

January 09, 2019

 

Q: I don’t think my mom ever used anything other than salt, pepper, and cinnamon to flavor food. She said it was silly and expensive to a container and then use only ¼ teaspoon. I am intrigued by the possibility that some herbs might be helpful in controlling inflammation. Can…

Kolasa, Kathy

January 06, 2019

It was in 1983 that parents told leaders of the Diocese of Lafayette, Louisiana, west of New Orleans, that Father Gilbert Gauthe had molested their sons.

Dominos started falling. The bishop offered secret settlements to nine families — but one refused to remain silent.

The rest is a long,…

Terry Mattingly

January 06, 2019

What really happened to Virginia Dare, the first child of English parents born in the New World? The same Virginia Dare whom I suggested recently belonged on “The World Almanac’s” list of famous North Carolinians.

A few weeks ago I wrote about Sir Walter Raleigh’s…

DGMartin.jpg

January 05, 2019

For to make chireseye, tak chiryes at þe feast of Seynt Iohn þe Baptist, & do awey þe stonys …

— Hieatt, Constance B. and Sharon Butler. Curye on Inglish: English Culinary Manuscripts of the Fourteenth-Century (Including the Forme of Cury). New York: for The Early…

pruncaro.jpg
121 stories in Look. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 13
        Next Page»   Last Page»