The world of cosmetics is one that combines science with the mystical, the pharmacy with the magic of well-done branding. That’s why it’s easy to spread misinformation and promise magic to no avail. Collagen, one of the fundamental components in the human body and one of the favorites in dermopharmacy, it is the victim of this cloud of smoke that surrounds the industry, and as one of the most efficient workhorses in the toilets of the wisest skin care, we set out to raise the curtain and understand what is true and what is not.
We talk with Gabriela del Fueyo, a chemist, pharmacobiologist and nutritionist specialized in cosmetics and dermopharmacy, and if that introduction was not enough, she is also a spokesperson for SESÉN, a Mexican health and wellness supplement company with hydrolyzed collagen as its main ingredient, to dismantle some of the the myths surrounding the use of collagen, from when you should start using it to whether it is true that you are fattening or not.
But before we begin to uncover some of the most important questions surrounding collagen, we need to hear, from the voice of an expert, what collagen really is: ‘Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body, is present in the skin, bones, muscles, in blood vessels, and is the molecule that functions as the support of the body. Our body produces collagen through our diet ‘, thanks Gabi, now we can get into the matter:
From when do we stop producing collagen?
When we are children we produce the amount of collagen our body needs, as long as we have a balanced diet, but from the age of 20-25, endogenous production begins to decline, Gabi explains. ‘That is when we begin to see that we lose the smoothness of the skin that characterizes children, and it is normal, it is when we begin to see the first wrinkles’, this is the moment when she recommends starting to supplement the intake of collagen, accompanied of a balanced diet.
When we turn 40 we produce half the collagen that we produced in our 20s.
What is the best way to consume collagen?
To define a balanced diet, Gabi relies on the Harvard plate model, where half is full of fruits and vegetables, a quarter has whole grains and the other healthy proteins. Collagen, explains Gabi, found in proteins. Good sources of collagen are meat, eggs, fish, chicken and beef broths, which have high concentration of collagen.
‘Collagen powder is the most convenient to consume, because you can put it in a smoothie, a little water, in your tea or coffee, because to consume the recommended daily dose, which is 15gr, you would have to take many capsules or tablets, since these have between 500mg and 1 gr ‘.
Although Gabi confesses that the SESÉN ones are the ones she likes the most, she says that the bars, which also have the brand, are other convenient products to consume because they contain the recommended dose of 15g per day, and you can carry them in your wallet when you have to go out and you don’t have time to make yourself a green juice.
Does collagen make you fat?
Each 15gr of collagen has 98 kilocalories. We get fat when the global set of the daily diet exceeds the recommended kilocalories for our weight and height, ‘I do not like that people focus so much on kilocalories, but on quantities. If you have an unbalanced diet where you eat hamburgers all the time and also consume collagen, you are probably going to gain weight, but it will not be the fault of collagen. ‘
Myth dismantled, thanks Gabi.
Does the time you take your collagen matter?
It doesn’t matter what time you take it, Gabi explains, laughing a bit at the question.
Does collagen have contraindications?
Collagen It does not have important contraindications according to Gabi, but it does recommend consulting with gynecologists and pediatricians when patients are pregnant or breastfeeding before consuming any type of supplement, as well as if it is someone with a diagnosed pathology, always consult a doctor, sense common first!
With what other supplements should we combine the consumption of collagen if we want a super powerful and rejuvenating formula?
‘Jó!’, Gabi was moved by this question, ‘if we combine it with vitamin C it is the bomb, because vitamin C also helps the body produce collagen and it is very good for health. And if we already want to improve the appearance of nails and hair, scientific studies have shown that biotin helps a lot and with hyaluronic acid you are giving your skin a cosmetic nutrient. You combine this with a good diet, good care, consistently! And you are going to help your skin look much better. ‘
Can collagen or biotin cause acne?
Collagen is not linked to breakouts, but biotin can cause it, although it depends on the person (as these things usually are).
The ‘good news’ is that biotin-induced acne should disappear when intake is stopped, Gabi explains. ‘Several ways that acne does not appear can be to consume a lower dose of biotin or drink plenty of water during its consumption’, although I who recently went through about two years of severe adult acne, I would not do anything that can reactivate it.
Does collagen give immediate results?
After a month and a half, two months, you usually see results. Magic does not exist, says Gabi, what exists is constancy.