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5 Best Collagen Producing Foods

 

Hi Jessie,

Collagen is a structural protein produced in your dermis (located below the epidermis and is the thickest of the 3 layers of the skin) that provides support and elasticity for your skin.

As you get older (from the age of about 25), your body produces less and less collagen. Decreasing collagen fibers within the skin results in signs of aging – wrinkles, fine lines, saggy tired-looking skin. If you want to delay the skin aging process and maintain a smooth youthful complexion, you need to replenish collagen.

As far as I know, many dermatologists argue that collagen face creams do very little to provide anti-wrinkle, skin firming benefits. This is because the collagen molecule is too large to penetrate through the surface of the skin. I've also heard of some people who had allergic reactions such as redness and itching to collagen facial creams.

So why pay for overpriced face creams when collagen producing foods can do a great deal to protect skin cells from damage and build collagen and elastin from the inside out. Not only it's much cheaper in the long term, you're also nourishing you body with a wide array of vitamins and minerals found in real foods. And, if you eat organic produce, you can be absolutely sure that you're eliminating synthetic chemicals, additives, pesticides and a list of other harmful things that are detrimental to skin health.

 

Foods to Boost Collagen in Your Skin

1. Fish

Your body will build collagen and elastin naturally when you eat enough omega 3 fats along with Vitamin C. Oily fish such as salmon, sardines, cod, herring, tuna, as well as mackerel, and also flax seeds and linseeds, are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids. These superfoods not only strengthen, soften and hydrate your skin but also prevents collagen breakdown. Uma Thurman and Heidi Klum are said to be huge fans.

 

 

2. Soy

If you crave for velvety smooth, soft and luminous skin like those beautiful Japanese actresses you see in SKII commercials, make sure to load up on soy products. Soybean-based products like soya milk, tempeh, miso, edamame and tofu contains phytoestrogens which mimics the effects of oestrogen, a female hormone. Decreased collagen production are associated with low oestrogen levels. Consuming soy products regularly will help to encourage your skin to keep producing collagen.

 

 

3. Berries

Everyone knows that Vitamin C is required to make collagen, and berries – blueberry, blackberry, strawberry, raspberry, cranberry, and goji berry (wolfberry) – have truckloads of Vitamin C and antioxidants. All of those berries soak up damaging free radicals and fight premature skin aging. Vitamin C also evens out blotchy complexion, lightens dark spots and brightens dull-looking tired skin.

 

 

4. Pig Trotters

Eating chicken skin, fish maw (dried fish belly) or pig trotters (pig's feet) may sound strange to you but these age-old Chinese beauty foods hold the secret to firm luminous skin. It is also believed that the natural collage in pig's trotters helps strengthen joints and ligament. Pig's trotters are usually stewed with vinegar or black sauce and eaten with steamed rice while fish maw is commonly used in soups.

 

 

5. Bird's Nest

Ever wondered why some women are so into bird's nest? It is said consuming this ancient delicacy (since the late Ming Dynasty) rejuvenates skin and maintain skin youthfulness with its "nurturing and cooling" properties. Bird's nest promotes cell regeneration and enhances collagen synthesis in the skin. Hence your skin will become smoother, more radiant and wrinkle-free.

If you can't afford bird's nest, consider this cheaper yet just-as-good alternative, white fungus. White fungus is also known as tremella fuciformis, snow fungus or silver mushroom. Usually used to make sweet dessert soup.

 

 

 

Having said that, stay out of the sun and use an SPF15 cream every day, even on cloudy days. Ultraviolet light from the sun's rays is the primary cause of skin aging. And remember, a good diet and a healthy lifestyle – being physically active, getting enough sleep and not smoking – go above and beyond any collagen face cream.

 

 

 

By Diane Hanson

 

I know collagen is essential to keep skin firm and supple but my problem is, I've a strained beauty budget and can't afford pricey anti-aging skincare products in the market. Can you tell me what foods helps boost collagen production naturally? I'm in my late thirties and I want to keep my face looking younger than my real age. – Jessie, Queensland.

what foods are rich in collagen

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