Everyone wants younger looking skin but time catches up with us eventually, and its effect is revealed in wrinkled skin and greying hair. Our natural aging process, also known as intrinsic aging, normally commences in our mid-20s. Chronological aging is an inherent degenerative process, and the process continues due to declining psychologic functions and capabilities.
Factors such as stress, unhealthy lifestyle, overdependence on harmful processed and fast foods, caffeine, alcohol, smoking, pollution and lack of exercise speeds up the process of skin-aging. With the progress of age, our skin starts sagging due to lower production of collagen and elastin in the dermis.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is the main structural and most abundant protein found in animal connective tissue. It is made up of amino acids and contains specific amino acids like glycine, praline, hydroxyproline and arginine.
It helps to produce almost 30% of the proteins within the body and is found in tendons, bones, ligaments and skin. It is also found in cartilage, corneas, bones, blood vessels, the gut, intervertebral disc and in teeth. As it gives our skin firmness, suppleness and helps in the constant renewal of skin cells, it is essential for our skin.
Ligament is a flexible connective tissue that connects two bones or cartilages. Tendons are connective tissue that connect muscle to bone and are capable of withstanding tension. Tendons and muscles work together to move bones. The bones, ligaments, tendons, skeletal muscles are made up of collagen which is renowned as one of the most predominant proteins.
Functions of Collagen for Skin
Aging is a natural process and its outward projection is the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Collagen is one of the most important proteins that makes our skin elastic, supple and youthful. Collagen occurs throughout the body and 29 types of collagen have been identified by researchers. Type 1 collagen which is made up of amino collagen C and Hyaluronic acid plays pivotal role in skin supplements. It reduces signs of aging and provides our skin strength and elasticity.
With increasing age, our body’s collagen production reduces, which increases the chance of wrinkles and fine lines. As collagen cannot be absorbed through the skin, people use supplements which help to increase the level of collagen in our body. Collagen supplements are really beneficial to our skin as they help reduce wrinkles, fine lines, reverse age of skin, tighten skin and plump it up and also improve skin elasticity.
10 Best Foods that Improve Collagen in Skin Naturally
There are various types of cabbages like cannonball cabbage, bok choy, choy sum, early jersey wakefield cabbage, January king cabbage, napa cabbage, Portugal cabbage, red drumhead cabbage, savoy cabbage, walkingstick cabbage and winningstadt cabbage. A perfect diet for glowing skin should include cabbage because it is one of the most well known foods containing collagen producing agents. The presence of antioxidants and phytonutrients like lutenin, thiocyanates, zeaxanthin, isothiocynates ans sulforaphane boost skin hydration and elasticity.
Cabbage is a source of fiber, vitamin B6, folate, manganese and it also provides iron, magnesium, phosphorous, calcium for strong bones and potassium, which helps reduce high blood pressure. Rich in Vitamin K, cabbage also helps the process of bone metabolism and prevents Alzheimer’s disease.
A glowing skin diet should include soy products like soy milk and cheese as they help you get rid of wrinkles and fine lines. The presence of genistelin, a natural plant hormone in soya improves the production of collagen which gives skin its strength and elasticity.
The presence of antioxidants in soya act magically in skin care, antioxidants protect the skin by controlling the production of free radicals that can be the main reason of damage or death to a cell. One of the most important benefits of antioxidant in skin care is skin firming.
Red Fruits and Vegetables
Red fruits like apples, oranges, cherries, strawberries and red vegetables like beets, red peppers, red potatoes act as anti-aging foods that increase collagen. The presence of antioxidant like lycopenes in red fruits and vegetables increase collagen production. Lycopense prevents DNA damage in the cells and help the cells function better.
It reduces the risk of cancer, macular degeneration and heart disease. By improving the health of the skin, antioxidants like lycopenes help reverse the effects of aging and the appearance of skin becomes attractive and youthful.
If you want healthy skin, make sure to include beans in your diet. It contains hyaluronic acid which is a vital anti aging substance. Hyaluronic acid holds water that plumps your skin so that wrinkles and lines are less visible.
Hyaluronic acid increases skin hydration, keeps skin moist and smooth, boosts skin elasticity, increases collagen synthesis, nourishes healthy skin cell growth, promotes firm skin tone and supports healthier joints. It is one of the most important components that plays an important role in cell proliferation and migration. Beans can be consumed in any form and sprouts are a very healthy option.
Carrots are rich in Vitamin A which helps increase collagen production and slows the breakdown of collagen and elastin that causes skin aging. Vitamin A thickens and stimulates the dermis where collagen, elastin and blood vessels are present and it also helps improve blood flow to the surface of the skin.
It repairs the cellular structure of the epidermis which gives us protection from UV rays and it decreases the clustering of melanin granules that reduce brown spots and pigmentation. It gives us healthy skin by decreasing sebum production and also lowers the problems of acne. It helps in the eradication of pre cancerous skin lesions and promotes a strong cellular membrane around the cell.
Flaxseeds and Walnuts
Flaxseeds are an amazing source of omega 3 fatty acids. One quarter cup of walnuts contains about 2.7 grams and one quarter cup of flaxseeds contains about 6.3 grams of omega 3 Fatty Acids. Omega 3 fatty acids are considered essential fatty acids. They are immensely necessary for health but our food is the only source of it as our body can’t produce it.
It reduces the risk of heart disease and helps in brain function, growth and development. By damaging the skin’s cellular DNA, excessive UV radiation produces genetic mutations that can lead to skin cancer. Beautiful skin tips should include foods that are rich in omega 3 fatty acids which increase collagen production and reduce the risk of skin cancer also.
Black or Green Olives
The inclusion of black or green olives in your diet is one of the best practices for healthy skin. Black or green olives are rich in sulphur which promotes collagen formation. Sulphur was used in ancient times to treat skin problems like dermatitis. It helps reduce skin oiliness, acne and prevents pore blockage from forming.
Acne is a skin condition that causes pimples, blackheads and red, inflamed patches of skin. Sulphur is found in a wide variety of skin care products like soaps, cleansers, lotions. Sulphur is also required for the proper structure and biological activity of enzymes and it also boosts our metabolism.
Lemons and Oranges
The presence of Vitamin C in lemons and oranges helps increase collagen production. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that slows the rate of free-radical damage and it is the key to avoiding scurvy. Fruits for healthy skin containing Vitamin C include strawberries, pineapple, oranges, and papaya.
Vitamin C reduces wrinkle formation by increasing collagen production and it is also a powerful antioxidant that reduces sunburn and tan naturally as well as reverses age-related damage to skin.
Avocado oil is high in plant steroids which help immensely to reduce age spots. Avocado oil is rich in Vitamin E which protects our skin from damage caused by free radicals and protects skin cells from oxidizing. It is a great source of omega 3 Fatty Acids.
Beautiful skin diet should include foods that are rich in omega 3 fatty acids which increase collagen production and reduce the risk of skin cancer. Avocado oil is ideal for dry and damaged skin because it helps to regenerate and rejuvenate damaged skin cells.
The presence of carnosine in turkey reduces cross lining process of the skin. Carnosine is an amino acid made naturally in the body and reduces skin aging, wrinkles and supports skin elasticity by rejuvenating skin cells. Turkey is a great source of zinc which reduces dry skin, inflammation in the skin and promotes skin cell growth by increasing the production of collagen and elastin. Zinc boosts our immune system and lowers high blood pressure thereby reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. It also helps to prevent ear and lower respiratory infections.
Include the above mentioned foods in your daily diet that increase collagen in skin to make it youthful, glowing and don’t forget to share your skin tips with us.
Deblina Biswas is a professional content writer at TheFitIndian.com. She has done her masters in English and has done her graduation from Banaras Hindu University. She has a penchant for writing on health, beauty and fashion.