Although often ignored from a nutritional standpoint, because it's the most abundant protein in the human body there are many benefits of collagen protein supplementation. Anyone in need of improved connective tissue health and joint strength can benefit from it, so it's beneficial for everyone from sedentary people to weekend warriors to all-out professional athletes. It also plays a role in natural beauty.
Nutritional sources for most people generally include beef or chicken bone broth, but supplemental powders and tablets are also available, also sourced from bovine and poultry. But those aren't the only sources, as certain precursors for collagen can be found in other foods, including fish (wild-caught salmon), chlorophyll (green, leafy vegetables), chlorella, and other fruits and vegetables. Even though these do support the formation of collagen protein, there are no completely plant-based sources of collagen itself.
Collagen is vital to nearly every tissue in the body, including:
- Connective tissue
- Blood vessels
- Intestinal lumen
Collagen protein is beneficial to just about everyone. It's great for athletes seeking improved performance, stronger joints and connective tissue, and even increased strength because collagen supports natural creatine synthesis. Plus, it's great for aging individuals or anyone seeking to look and feel healthy.The Benefits of Using Collagen Protein Alone
Unlike other protein sources that can be used alone, in combination with other protein-containing foods, collagen is best taken alone on an empty stomach at least 30 minutes before a meal. It should also be consumed without any other protein source, whether supplemental or whole-food based, as other proteins may interfere with its absorption rate.
None of that means that collagen has to be your only source of protein. Quite the opposite, in fact. It should be consumed alone, as mentioned above, but there are no restrictions on what other protein sources you use throughout the rest of the day, whether alone, in shakes, or with your meals. And nothing bad will happen if it's not consumed alone, but you won't be getting your money's worth. It's simply best to take collagen completely by itself to ensure optimal absorption of this ultra-beneficial protein source.
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