Four veggies to turbocharge your collagen production
Posted on Feb 10, 2020 by Canyon River Staff
Collagen, the most plentiful substance in the body after water, is one of the major building blocks of bones, skin, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. It’s also the protein that gives skin it’s structure, suppleness, and stretch.
The body’s natural collagen synthesis decreases as we get older—signs of aging (wrinkles, hair loss, joint pain) are linked to this. However, we can increase collagen creation by consuming the ingredients necessary for it to occur. Here are some of the most potent vegetable sources of the nutrients required for collagen production.
Broccoli is a particularly beneficial food being a good source of fiber and protein alongside a good number of vital vitamins and minerals.
Vitamin C is present in high amounts in broccoli. This important vitamin is responsible for holding the cells together during the creation of collagen. Vitamin C itself is not produced by the body, so all of it comes from diet. Without adequate amounts of this, collagen cannot be created or stored in the body.
Vitamin C also acts as a powerful antioxidant that prevents the breakdown of collagen caused by free radicals. These toxins are present in the food, water, and even in the air.
Kale is one of the healthiest foods on the planet thanks to its nutrient-rich composition. They are high in Vitamin C, A and E which are both all crucial to collagen synthesis, repair, and protection.
In addition, kale is a good source of the carotenoid lutein known as the ‘eye vitamin’, which works as a filler to block against damaging blue light waves and a protective factor against damaging free radicals, preventing degradation of collagen.
Studies have evidenced that an increase in lutein in the diet can result in significantly improved skin tone, luminance, and color.
The beetroot part of the beet plant is considered to provide a wide range of health benefits, including reducing blood pressure and lowering the risk of diabetes.
In addition to being high in vitamins C and E, beetroot contains a whole host of other vital nutrients that are important in the production of collagen. They are packed with the phytonutrients, anthocyanins. These compounds are naturally found in certain plants, giving them their bright blue, red, or purple colors.
Anthocyanins work with vitamin C to create cross-links that strengthen and reinforce collagen fibers. Their antioxidant activity also helps to protect skin from oxidative damage caused by the aging process.
Beets also contain small amounts of copper. This mineral is essential for collagen development. Research has demonstrated that when the level of copper within the skin cells increases, collagen production goes up.
Moreover, beets, like their red-colored fruit counterparts, tomatoes, and peppers, contain an antioxidant called lycopene. It is suggested that this can offer protection for the skin from harmful solar rays and so prevent the degradation of existing collagen.
Sulfur compounds in garlic have been evidenced to have a vital role in collagen production and repair. They also work to prevent its breakdown. The compound allicin, when broken down, acts as an incredibly efficient antioxidant that reacts with free radicals and traps them, protecting collagen from any damage.