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What’s in collagen peptides UK: amino acid composition

by Natasha Whiting

What’s in collagen peptides UK: amino acid composition

Our bodies need amino acids for a variety of reasons, and these change depending on our age, health status and nutrition. Experts recommend a protein consumption of between 1.2-2kg per gram of bodyweight each day for older adults, and a similar amount for physically active individuals at a younger age. By increasing their protein intake, a sportsperson can improve their training capacity and promote faster recovery after physical activity. We can facilitate a high protein intake by eating a varied, regular diet, but supplementation can make it far easier. The choice of protein makes a big difference here.

Collagen peptides UK

Collagen peptides are the result of subjecting pure collagen molecules to a process called hydrolysis, breaking down the triple helix into smaller chains of amino acids. Collagen peptides are particularly high in the amino acids glycine, proline, hydroxyproline and alanine.

After you consume a supplement that contains a dose of collagen peptides, those amino acids are absorbed into the bloodstream. They then become available as small, unique peptides that are defined by a ‘Pro-Hyp’ containing sequence. Essentially, these peptides function as crucial signal molecules that stimulate our cells and also serve as building blocks that provide structure to connective tissues and the musculo-skeletal system.

Collagen peptides are distinct from other protein supplements because they are more abundant in:

• Alanine
• Arginine
• Glutamic acid
• Glycine
• Proline
• Hydroxyproline

This specific composition of amino acids is what gives the collagen peptides UK consumers can buy, their unique bioactive properties. You will not get the same results from any other protein sources. Let’s take a look at what each of these amino acids does for the body.

Alanine

This is a non-essential amino acid for the body. It is known to be a rate-limiting precursor for carnosine, another essential building block for tissues in the body. Alanine is responsible for the skeletal muscle’s acid-base homeostasis, meaning it helps maintain the correct balance between acids and bases to maintain the correct physiology and promote healthy cellular metabolism.

The amino acid is also known to have an ergogenic effect – similar to caffeine, this means it can help boost your energy levels.

Arginine

Arginine is one of the conditionally essential amino acids for our bodies. This means it is not usually an essential one, but in times of illness, injury or stress then it becomes essential.

As you might then guess, arginine plays an important role in wound healing. It helps build body mass and promote good health in the circulatory system. It may help with injury recovery where new tissues need to be grown or repaired.

Glutamic acid

Glutamic acid is another conditionally essential amino acid.

Its key function is that it serves as the precursor for glutamine, which plays a couple of important roles in our bodies. First, it is fundamental to the health of both the digestive system and the immune system. Second, it plays an important role in energy production. So it will promote good health throughout the body and may help you feel more energetic.

Glycine

Glycine is yet another conditionally essential amino acid. It is pivotal in enabling the collagen helix to form its unique helical structure, so it is needed to promote the synthesis of new collagen in the body.

In addition to this, glycine has anti-inflammatory properties that can help with healing where injuries are present, or where age-related swelling occurs in tissues like tendons and cartilage. Glycine is important for good health in the nervous system and will support overall wellbeing when consumed in good amounts.

Proline

Proline is another conditionally essential amino acid. Primarily, in our bodies, it functions as the precursor for hydroxyproline.

Hydroxyproline

Hydroxyproline is needed for the production of collagen in our bodies. It is one of the major components of collagen and plays a key role in its stability. It facilitates the twisting of the collagen helix, so without it, your body will not be able to synthesise new collagen to be distributed throughout the body.

More about collagen peptides UK

Listed above are just some of the amino acids contained in collagen peptides. There are actually up to 19 amino acids in collagen peptides, including 8 of the 9 essential amino acids. This means it is not classified as a complete protein, but it is very close and also contains high volumes of amino acids that are very hard to come by from other sources. These are the ones that stimulate and support the synthesis of endogenous collagen – that is, collagen that is created naturally within our bodies.

The collagen we get from supplements is called exogenous, meaning it originates from outside our bodies. Our bodies don’t simply distribute exogenous collagen around our bodies; instead, we use it to fuel the creation of endogenous collagen which can then be used to support bones, teeth and various connective tissues throughout our anatomy.

So what benefits can I expect to get from collagen peptides?

This depends on a few factors. First, the type of collagen you consume. There are many types of collagen, but our bodies mostly contain type I, type II and type II, with type I making up the vast majority. It plays a role in our skin, bones, teeth, joints, hair and nails, muscles, vascular system and digestive tract. Primarily, its function is to provide strength and structure to the tissues and fibres in those areas – as our collagen levels drop with age (and various environmental factors) we notice problems in all those areas of our bodies.

Another factor that impacts the benefits we might experience from collagen peptides is their quality. Depending on their source, the method of extraction and the process of hydrolysis, there are differing degrees to the purity, integrity and bioavailability of collagen peptides in supplements.

The third factor is dosage – studies have shown that a daily dosage of 2-12 grams will help promote most of the benefits we hope to get from collagen supplements, but the higher on that scale your daily dosage falls, the better.

Kollo uses premium grade marine collagen peptides. This means they are extracted from the skin and scales of aquaculture-farmed fish, where the use of chemicals that might contaminate the collagen is kept to a minimum. That collagen is extracted via chemical-free enzymatic processes and put through a high-quality process of hydrolysis, with various safety controls throughout that ensure the integrity and purity of the collagen peptides. Marine collagen is almost exclusively type I collagen, the type our bodies need the most, and we provide a daily dosage of 10 grams to ensure you get plenty of those all-important amino acids.

Collagen peptides UK: benefits at a glance

The benefits we can expect to experience to varying degrees from daily collagen supplementation mainly revolve around boosting the endogenous collagen in our bodies. This can be more helpful for people in middle age and beyond, or those who suffer from certain conditions that affect the skin, bones or joints. However, most people can benefit in some way from collagen supplementation with a high-quality supplement, as collagen decline in the body begins in our twenties.

The benefits of the collagen peptides UK consumers can buy include:

• Skin health: within 6-8 weeks, you may experience firmer, more vibrant skin that feels better hydrated and more supple.

• Fine lines/wrinkles: in addition to the above, you may notice the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles fades as the skin health improves.

• Aches and pains: if you experience discomfort in your joints, you may notice some improvement within 2-3 months of starting your daily collagen intake.

• Hair and nails: it can take just a few weeks for your new collagen intake to help improve the processes by which your hair and nails are formed. This can make hair and nails firmer, shinier and less brittle.

• Bones: with longer intake (6-12 months), collagen peptides can help increase your bone density, strengthening your musculoskeletal system. This is particularly helpful for older adults or women going through menopause, decreasing the risk of things like fractures and osteoporosis.

• Muscles: the amino acids can help with building new muscle, so if you are physically active then collagen supplements may promote faster recovery from workouts and gains in muscle mass.

• Gut and vascular health: less tangible than some other benefits, in the long run your collagen supplement may help improve the condition of your digestive tract and blood vessels.

Final thoughts

The collagen peptides UK consumers can buy are complex chains of amino acids. They are abundant in certain amino acids that are not so easy to get from our diet or even other protein supplements, and these are the amino acids that play a crucial role in creating new endogenous collagen in our bodies. The benefits of this extend to many areas of our health and beauty, particularly for people in midlife and beyond.

If you want to learn more about Kollo and how it distinguishes itself from the many collagen supplements on the UK market, we invite you to explore our website. We have information about the product itself, links to scientific studies, a section of customer reviews and a blog that covers a wide range of topics about collagen. If you still have any questions, please get in touch and one of our team would be delighted to answer them for you.

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