8 Foods to Replenish Collagen in Your Skin - Step To Health

8 Foods to Replenish Collagen in Your Skin

Although you can get it from creams and lotions, the truth is that in order to replenish collagen you should add foods to your diet that are rich in this nutrient.
8 Foods to Replenish Collagen in Your Skin

Last update: 30 September, 2020

If you’re over 35 and you notice that your skin has lost elasticity, firmness, and your first wrinkles are appearing, we’re going to show you the culprit: you most likely need to replenish collagen in your skin.

Collagen is a protein made of connective tissue cells known as fibroblasts. It makes up around 30% of your body’s total protein mass, and 80% of the connective tissue.

In more understandable terms, this protein is the glue that binds your whole body together. Without it, your body wouldn’t be able to unite all of its pieces.

Collagen and your skin

Woman with healthy skin
The health of your skin is directly linked to collagen, which is responsible for protecting its structure and forming a barrier to toxins and other harmful external agents.

It’s the main component of your hair and nails, as well as the ligaments and connective tissue. More specifically, it’s responsible for your skin’s firmness and makes up the bulk of the dermis.

For this reason, when you lose collagen you also lose firmness and elasticity.

When do you start losing collagen and why?

Humans start losing collagen when they turn around 25 years old, and it becomes more obvious after the age of 35.

As collagen decreases, the epithelial structures weaken, the skin becomes thinner, your hair is less strong, and wrinkles and sagging skin begin to appear.

Also, your tendons and ligaments become less elastic and your joints lose flexibility.

Factors that accelerate the loss of collagen

  • Exposure to the sun, smoking, pollutants, toxins, stress, and excessive physical exercise increase the production of free radicals that can destroy your existing collagen reservoirs.
  • Low hormone production during menopause and aging also decrease collagen production.
  • Health problems with treatments that prevent the body’s absorption of vitamins and minerals worsen the effects.

What can you eat to replenish collagen in your skin?

Signs of aging
Even though your collagen production has started to fall, not everything is lost. There are some foods that are rich in this protein and others that help produce it. The bottom line is that they help replenish collagen in your skin.

Their consumption can help you recover the firmness, freshness, and elasticity of your skin. They include:

1. Meat

Meat constitutes an important nutritional element of the diet.

Thanks to its high content of collagen, the best meats are:

  • Beef
  • Chicken
  • Goat
  • Ox
  • Deer
  • Pork (especially the legs)

Skin, bones, and offal are also rich sources of protein and collagen, such as pork skin, bone broth, etc.

2. Fish

Although fish has a lower concentration of this nutrient than other protein sources, the scales of fish are particularly abundant in collagen.

Also, the omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon and tuna can help protect the membranes around your skin cells.

As a result, this reduces inflammation and provides elasticity and firmness.

3. Gelatin

Gelatin in a bowl

Gelatin is made up of 90% collagen protein derivatives. It’s also very low in calories. It’s a great food to replenish collagen in your skin.

4. Red fruits and vegetables

Red fruits like apples, strawberries, cherries, beets, red peppers, and more, contain lycopene, a substance that in addition to being an excellent antioxidant, helps promote the production of collagen.

5. Fruits that are rich in vitamin C

Vitamin C is essential for the production of collagen. You’ll find it in oranges, lemons, kiwis, grapefruit, mango, pineapple, and other fruits.

They also contain antioxidants that reduce the formation of wrinkles.

6. Vegetables

Vegetables like cabbage, eggplant, endive, and spinach are great for the production of collagen.

7. Foods rich in sulfur compounds

A bowl of olives to replenish collagen
Foods such as celery, green and black olives, garlic, cucumber, bananas, onions, and tofu have a high sulfur content, which stimulates the production of collagen.

8. Other foods

Other foods you should include in your diet are soy milk, cheese, tea, nuts, and foods rich in lysine like potatoes, seaweed, and brewer’s yeast.

All these products are easy to obtain. Combine them in your diet to your liking. Be sure that your diet is healthy and balanced, and you’ll start to notice the effects through your skin when your body increases its production of collagen.

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  • Prockop, D. J., & Guzmán, N. a. (1981). El colágeno. Tiempos Médicos.
  • Nimni, M. E., & Harkness, R. D. (2018). Molecular structure and functions of collagen. In Collagen: Volume I: Biochemistry. https://doi.org/10.1201/9781351070799
  • Silva, T. F. reira, & Penna, A. L. B. (2012). Colágeno: Características químicas e propriedades funcionais. Rev Inst Adolfo Lutz. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-17226-7_13