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Posts Tagged ‘collagen health’

New Research Shows How Collagen Benefits Our Bones

 
 

Man Doing Yoga In Spectacular Coastal Scenery

 
Making up around 75% of the body’s protein, collagen benefits most of the functions we rely upon. We need adequate levels of this essential substance to ensure our skin, hair, nails, muscles and joints operate as they should. Studies have shown collagen benefits can be particularly effective in treating arthritis and sports injuries.

Another area that we now understand is affected by a loss of collagen is the strength of our bones. Beyond the age of 25 the levels of collagen in the body reduces by around 1.5% every year. As we reach middle age this loss starts to be significant, especially with the onset of hormonal changes in women, and conditions such as osteoporosis (brittle bones) can cause distress.

We have known for a long time that such problems can be reduced by a combination of a good diet, regular exercise and avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol. The careful consumption of supplementary collagen benefits our bodies too (find out more about collagen supplements at LookRavishing.com).

It has taken a recent study at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to understand just how the collagen benefits our bones.

The structure of bone has long been something of a mystery; the two main constituents of our skeletons are soft collagen and hydroxyapatite, a hard form of a mineral called apatite, but the riddle has been how these two work in combination.

Hydroxyapatite is brittle, like chalk, and collagen is the opposite, very bendy and soft, so researchers attempted to find out what combines the two to make the tough substance we know as bone.

It took the latest technology to shine the light upon this mystery: super computers were used to produce three-dimensional image of the molecules and it was shown the grains of hydroxyapatite are incredibly tiny and embedded within the collagen. They are held together by electrostatic energy.

The new research opens the door for further studies to discover just how conditions such as osteoporosis take place and how they can be countered.

Let’s hope the answer is not too far away.

Read more about the MIT study on their website.
 
 

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Tips To Beautiful Skin: Sugar And Your Skin

We all know about the damage to the skin created by alcohol, smoking and the sun but did you know one of the healthy skin tips we should follow is to avoid consuming excess sugar?

Of course the body needs some sugar for energy but too often we eat sugary foods and drinks that provide amounts in excess of our requirements. Interestingly sugar molecules will attach themselves to proteins and create a damaging process called glycation. This takes place where there is a lack of enzymes, which usually control the damage caused by sugar.

The type of sugar consumed makes a difference too. Fructose and galactose have ten times the glycation activity of glucose. The reactions are slow but end up as advanced glycation end products (or AGEs). It is these AGEs that cause the trouble as they can lead to heart disease, deafness, cancer and even Alzheimer’s disease. In other words, an excess of sugar accelerates the sign of ageing.

You will not be surprised therefore to learn that glycation damages the proteins (collagen) in the skin so leading to yet more wrinkles. This happens in two ways; the AGEs reduce the abilities of collagen to rebuild the skin and also they increase the rate at which collagen breaks down.

So the best way to keep your collagen health is to lay off the sugary foods and perhaps take a collagen capsule course.

Read more about the effects of sugar on the skin on the BangkokPost.com website.

 

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How Collagen Benefits The Human Body


Collagen is one of those substances that are fashionable in discussions on health these days but what is it exactly and what are some collagen benefits?

Collagen is a durable substance with the consistency of glue that makes up around 30% of the body’s proteins. It is a fibrous material and contains large amounts of two amino acids: hydroxyproline and proline. The areas most reliant on this substance include bones, skin and the connective tissues in tendons and cartilage.

Smoking, ageing, the menopause, pollution, trauma and ultra violet light (from the sun) will damage the levels of collagen available.

Collagen And The Skin

Collagen benefits the skin by ensuring its elasticity and strength. Collagen molecules resemble microscopic ropes and they act as such by giving strength to the appropriate areas of our bodies. Collagen hydrolysate also helps hydrate the skin.

Interestingly collagen makes up some 90% of the skins proteins. Sadly women see to lose collagen faster as they age as a result of the reduction in oestrogen in the menopause. This results in dry skin, a thinning of the dermis layer, some bruising, reduced elasticity and even a reduction in hearing. The effects are easily seen with the development of lines, wrinkles and sagging skin. As exposure to the sun has the same effects the link with reduced collagen are clear.

A deterioration in the quality of nails and hair is also symptomatic of a loss of collagen.

Collagen And Connective Tissue

People active in sports will also find collagen benefits in the maintenance of the connective tissues in the joints. Cartilage covers the ends of bones of course as a strong lubricated pad to cushion the movement of bones against each other during muscle movement. Cartilage is made up of a combination of collagen and water.

A healthy level of collagen benefits the weight bearing abilities of ligaments and cartilage. Young athletes in particular need to keep levels of collagen maintained as the growing process connected to extra activity puts more strain on the joints.

According to a recent study in Germany athletes suffering damage to their connective tissues have found a collagen capsule course speeds up recovery markedly.

Collagen And The Skeleton

As we get older joints suffer wear and tear and a reduction of articular cartilage (bone cartilage) can result in osteoarthritis.

Affecting around nine million people in the United Kingdom alone, osteoarthritis is the most common disorder of the joints suffered by older people and those in middle age. Osteoarthritis is the deterioration of the cartilage at the end of the bones and creates swelling and a great deal of pain.

Another disease related to ageing is osteoporosis or brittle bones disease. This results in disability and too often death following bones breaking and is caused by a low level of calcium in the skeleton but also a reduction in levels of collagen.

This disease in found in both men and women but the menopause can create especial problems in women.

The Answer

Certain foods such as flax seed, prunes, vitamin rich fruit (such as oranges) and dark, leafy vegetables will improve the body’s own collagen production but a collagen capsule course would also have collagen benefits.

There are so many collagen benefits to the body it would seem wise to do everything possible to maximize the levels of this important substance.

To find out more about collagen and collage capsule supplements, please go to LookRavishing.com.

 

 

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New Calcium Natural Diet Supplement

 

Fabulous Arched Backflip by Londons Festival Pier

 

Last year the Duchess of Cornwall had a fall and broke both her legs. Both her mother and grandmother suffered from osteoporosis, or brittle bone disease, and the Duchess is the President of the National Osteoporosis Society: the fear was that she too was suffering from the condition.

According to statistics from the International Osteoporosis Foundation, an estimated 75 million people in the USA, Europe and Japan suffer from brittle bones and there were around 9 million new osteoporotic fractures during the year 2000. The cost of treating sufferers is estimated at $5.2 billion each year. In women over 45 years of age, osteoporosis accounts for more days in hospital than many other diseases, including breast cancer and diabetes.

The problem is going to get worse too. 1 in 3 women over the age of 65 are prone to fractures, as are 1 in 5 men. By the year 2050 the number of people in Europe and America living beyond the age of 80 is set to triple.

So how can we avoid becoming part of these statistics?

Calcium is the substance that hardens the bones. Actually the real strength in the bones comes from a combination of collagen and calcium. Minerals such as calcium bind to the collagen to form bone.

But it is not just the bones that benefit from calcium. The substance is abundant in the body and maintains the strength of nails and teeth too.

It was the case that we would simply drink lots of milk to build up the calcium levels in our bodies and this has been largely successful in the past. However it is becoming widely accepted that over farming has lead to a reduction in the goodness we receive from various foodstuffs and this is beginning to be understood in the case of the calcium benefits of milk too.

Unfortunately too many cows are being fed on artificial feedstuffs and even those grazing on open meadows may be eating grass reduced in nutrition.

So what do we do then?

While calcium is still found in milk, we need to use nutritional health supplements to increase the calcium we take in. During the Proto-col National Conference earlier this year Managing Director of Proto-col, James Greenwell, launched a new Calcium Complex capsule.

This new product contains both calcium and collagen to help to strengthen bones. However there are other trace substances and vitamins included to ensure bone health and indeed the absorption of calcium to where it is needed.

The figures on osteoporosis are sobering but I think we all owe it to ourselves to give our bodies’ structure the strength it requires for good health and safe living.

The emergence of any new and effective natural diet supplement should be welcomed.

 

To find out more about Proto-cols new Calcium Complex natural diet supplement, go to LookRavishing.com.

 


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Hyaluronic Acid And How It Can Help Us

Stunning Oriental Girl With Lovely Eyes

You may be the same as me and have never heard of hyaluronic acid, which is a pity as it is quite a useful substance in terms of skincare.

This substance is key in moisturizing the skin as it can hold a thousand times its own weight in water. This is significant as it carries the water around the body to where it is needed. It works with elastin and most particularly collagen to provide benefits in many parts of the body, particularly in hydrating the skin and repairing cartilage. It also helps in repairing scar tissue so has benefits to new mothers and sufferers of acne. Other benefits include faster repairing wounds and relief from arthritis (as it helps lubricate joints.)

Collagen molecules provide the structure into which hyaluronic acid locks moisture.

Hyaluronic acid is one of the substances that deteriorate with age; we lose significant amounts from the age of eighteen and, combined with the loss of collagen, leads to lines and wrinkles later in life.

It hardly seems surprising that this substance is affected by ultra violet light when you consider excess sunlight leads to premature aging and wrinkles. This process has been linked to skin cancer too.

The body is unable to produce sufficient hyaluronic acid in later years so one of the more useful healthy skin tips you could receive would be to find a way to reintroduce this acid into the body. Previously the only method was to inject affected areas with doses (and this is presently the only way yet approved by the US Food and Drug Administration) but of course this involves potential problems such as skin bruising and indeed the fear of injections.

In February the Proto-col company in the United Kingdom introduced it’s Skin Plus capsules, which combine collagen and hyaluronic acid in one easy to take dose. Just for good measure, each natural diet supplement capsule includes a range of useful vitamins too. Proto-col believe this new product represents a significant step forward in skincare.

To find out more about Proto-col’s new Skin Plus natural diet supplement, please come over to LookRavishing.com .


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James Greenwell Talks About Proto-col (Video)

Protocol Naturally Advanced Skincare Range

This interesting video is an interview with James Greenwell founder and owner of the Proto-col company producing natural beauty products and nutritional health products.

To find out more about Proto-col and it’s products and opportunities for consultants, please visit LookRavishing.com.


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Smoking And Your Skin

Girl smoking cigarette

The effects of aging and excess sun on the skin on otherwise healthy skin are well known but there is one pollutant that can have a detrimental effect too. Smoking.

Healthy skin comes from the inside through nutritional health but in the case of smoking damage comes from inside and outside too.

Of course there has been a lot of negative propaganda about smoking in recent years so it would be too easy to see this article as another annoying campaign to stop smoking. Nonetheless, I will try to set out how smoking affects the skin as a reasoned argument for healthy skin.

The primary role of the blood is to transport oxygen to the vital organs in the body including healthy skin. One of the byproducts of tobacco smoke is carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is absorbed two hundred times more quickly than oxygen and displaces the oxygen in the bloodstream thus starving the vital organs. In excess carbon monoxide kills.

Carbon monoxide also creates extra free radicals in the body, which attack various areas, particularly the skin.

One of the roles of the liver in the body is to neutralize harmful chemicals. If it has to deal with too many it will have to switch from its usual functions to deal with the threat. Just to summarize the livers important functions, it helps process digested food and turns it into energy, controls the level of fats, glucose and amino acids, combats various infections in the body, cleans the body of infections, stores essential chemicals and vitamins, manufactures proteins and enzymes essential to the bodily functions, manufactures bile and of course neutralizes drugs and toxins. Pretty useful then.

Cigarette smoke contains several harmful chemicals including hydrogen cyanide, arsenic, cadmium and prussic acid. Overworking the liver in combatting these threats leads to healthy skin turning yellow: a condition that can get worse the more cigarettes smoked.

Smoking also damages the nutritional health of the skin by restricting the formation of vitamin C. This vitamin is itself an anti-oxidant so is unable to attack the extra free radicals produced by the act of smoking.

Vitamin C also helps in the production of collagen, which helps plump the skin. Reduced vitamin C begins the change from healthy skin to the dry, wrinkly and saggy skin seen in experienced smokers.

We all know smoking produces nicotine, another of the harmful chemicals, and this acts like an adrenaline, restricting the blood vessels to the skin. This further restricts the flow of nutrients and oxygen. Another consequence is wounds are slow to heal.

But it is not just the chemical effects that damage healthy skin. Think about the physical reactions to smoking. Firstly, smokers purse their lips to draw the smoke and this repeated action promotes extreme wrinkles around the mouth. Equally, the eyes are more frequently squeezed shut, both in the action of smoking and in avoiding smoke getting into the eyes. Again, this repeated action creates wrinkles around the eyes.

All of us probably know someone who has spent too long in the sun on a regular basis and is showing premature aging of his or her skin. If you look at a heavy smoker you will see similar effects, except the skin will also look sallow.

Clearly smoking tobacco has a detrimental effect on otherwise healthy skin. Natural supplements and natural beauty products can reverse the signs to an extent but the better option is to not smoke at all.


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Man smoking a cigarette

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Protocol Freezes VAT On Their Products

I am sure you are aware that VAT in the UK is to rise from 17.5% to 20% on January 1 2010.

The On Group, owners of the Proto-col brand of natural beauty products has however announced today that the prices of their products will not increase.

This means you can buy your favourite collagen supplement, mineral makeup, fake tan products, natural supplements, natural skincare and sports nutrition supplements at the same price in 2011 as it has been this year.

Equally any distributors of these natural beauty products will benefit from the same great profits and commissions as before.

Everybody wins.

A government economist, Roger Martin-Fagg noted “This is a stroke of genius for Proto-col in the British and European economy.”

If you are thinking of becoming a distributor for Proto-col then now is a great time. Many are predicting great growth for this natural beauty products brand in 2011.

Join the excitement now!

NOTE: There are still great promotions for the Christmas period available on LookRavishing.com – the last dates for ordering for Christmas is December 20 (12pm for Royal Mail delivery) and December 22 (12pm for courier delivery) so there is still time to give family and friends some wonderful gifts whilst keeping the costs to a minimum!

Also note that there is a Proto-col National Conference on February 6 2011 so all new distributors can go along and find out all they need about this fast-expanding range of natural beauty products.


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Vitamin C In Anti Aging Products

Many natural beauty products include vitamin C in their ingredients. What are the advantages of this particular vitamin to healthy skin, especially in those claiming anti- aging properties?

Vitamin C, also known as Ascorbic Acid, enables the production of collagen and, as we know, collagen is essential to healthy skin. A loss of vitamin C results in a loss of elasticity in the skin and wrinkling – similar to that seen in people who have spent too long in the sun. In addition, a lack of vitamin C results in wounds and indeed the gums not healing correctly.

A well-known symptom of an extreme lack of vitamin C is the condition known as scurvy. This was the curse of seafarers years ago and symptoms include bleeding gums and open wounds.

Vitamin C is also a good antioxidant and ensures healthy skin through the scavenging of free radicals. Vitamin C also has benefits to the health of blood vessels and the immune system.

One problem is vitamin C oxidizes easily on contact with the air so good natural beauty products have to carefully formulated to prevent this. You will know if oxidization has occurred as a light brown residue will form around the neck of the container. Oxidized vitamin C loses much of its antioxidant properties.

One way to overcome the problem is to use not vitamin C but a derivative of it but this is less effective on the skin. Pure vitamin C products are therefore usually expensive. This clearly gives manufacturers of natural beauty products a problem but there are quite a few that have solved the problem without making the natural skincare product too dear.

Of course, a good diet with plenty of vitamin C in it (using perhaps citrus fruit) will help, or if required, good natural supplements. Good nutrition always shows in the complexion.

Be sure to take care in your selection of natural beauty products.


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Look After Your Neck And Hands

You may have noticed as I have but aging is given away by the condition of the neck and hands. This is why many older celebrities take to wearing scarves and other neck ornaments. Others might even wear gloves more.

Too much sun can also show aging on the chest: I have known several older ladies in particular from hotter countries whose chests show their age very early.

The skin on these surfaces tends to be thinner with less sweat and oil glands to keep the area moisturised. The skin on the neck, hands and chest needs to be treated in a different way to other areas, such as the face, so some healthy skin tips might be appropriate.

The truth is these areas of the skin show the state of your collagen health. It is the deterioration of the collagen in the skin that helps create this aged, wrinkled look.

There are several ways to combat this.

You can improve your collagen health in various ways including collagen injections and collagen capsules.

There are surgical and other drastic procedures you can undertake but good natural skin treatment products should be effective in keeping the symptoms at bay. Often good nutrition, including natural dietary supplements, should help too.

There is a deeper layer of dead skin cells on the neck, hands and chest and this is why natural skincare products are usually thicker in consistency.

The use of a good quality sunscreen can also delay the signs of aging.

Too often these areas of skin are neglected in the regular use of natural skin treatment but as the neck, hands and chest can be such a giveaway to age, they should clearly be given at least equal attention.

Proto-col provide a high quality, good value range of collagen capsules, natural dietary supplements and natural skin treatment products that are designed to reduce the signs of aging. Find out more at LookRavishing.com

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