How Long Does it Take for Collagen to Start Working?
Collagen, often referred to as the "building block" of our bodies, plays a vital role in maintaining healthy skin, hair, nails, joints, and more. With its numerous benefits, it's no wonder that collagen supplements have gained popularity in recent years. However, one common question that arises is: how long does it take for collagen to start working? Let's dig in…
Before delving into the timeline, let's take a pause to check in with what collagen is and how it works. Collagen is a protein that acts as a structural foundation, providing strength, elasticity, and support to our connective tissues. It is abundant in our bodies, but its production naturally declines as we age, leading to a downturn in our skin health which may be visible as wrinkles, sagging skin, or as physical symptoms such as joint discomfort.
Supplementing with Collagen:
To combat the effects of collagen depletion, many people turn to collagen supplements. These supplements come in various forms, including powders, capsules, liquids and even coffee creamers. These generally (but not always) contain Type 1 hydrolyzed collagen peptides, which are easily absorbed by the body. But as you know, not all collagen is created equal. It’s essential to choose a collagen supplement with a small molecule size. The size of the collagen peptides is important as it determines their absorbability. In this case, good things come in small packages and smaller peptide chains between the range of 2000 to 5000 daltons (DA) are known to be the optimal size for Type 1 collagen peptides.
If absorption is your ‘thing’ head to our blog here to geek out with us on the science of collagen: How Collagen Works and What the Science Tells Us (So Far).
Patience is Key:
When starting a collagen supplementation routine, it's important to remember that patience and consistency is key. While some individuals may notice initial benefits sooner, it can vary for the time it takes for collagen to exert its effects. Results can vary depending on factors such as age, overall health, lifestyle choices, and the quality of the collagen product used. It's essential to approach collagen supplementation with a long-term perspective.
Factors Affecting Results:
Several factors influence how long it takes for collagen to start working in your body. Firstly, consistency is crucial. Taking collagen regularly and as directed allows your body to gradually absorb and utilise the peptides effectively. Secondly, dosage matters. Following the recommended dosage ensures that you're providing your body with an adequate amount of collagen to support its natural processes. Lastly, lifestyle factors such as diet, exercise, sleep, and stress management also play a role. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can optimise and enhance the results of collagen supplementation.
Timeline of Collagen Benefits:
While there is no set time frame for Type 1 collagen peptides to start working, some individuals report noticing changes within a few weeks of consistent use. These initial changes usually include improved skin hydration, reduced joint discomfort, and increased nail strength. However, it's essential to remember that these are subjective experiences and can vary from person to person - we're all wonderfully unique like that.
Within three to six months of regular collagen supplementation, most individuals begin to observe more noticeable benefits. Skin elasticity may improve, wrinkles and fine lines may appear diminished, and hair may appear thicker and healthier. Additionally, joint mobility and flexibility may increase and recovery may be enhanced, supporting an active lifestyle. Click here to read more about how collagen can supercharge your training and recovery.
The body will also allocate the collagen to parts where it’s needed the most. If you have some gut healing or joint repair to do, that’s what the body is likely to prioritise. Although it will look a bit different for everyone, we can look at studies to help gauge some documented timings:
As you continue to incorporate and enjoy using collagen in your daily rituals, the long-term benefits become even more pronounced. Type 1 collagen helps to promote overall skin health by supporting the production of elastin and hyaluronic acid, essential components for that outer glow. It also aids in strengthening nails, promoting healthy hair growth, and supporting the health and flexibility of joints and bones.
Let’s round it up:
As you know, collagen supplementation can provide a multitude of benefits for your overall well-being. We love to call it ‘whole-body health’, that incredible knock on effect that we get when something works holistically across your body. While the timeline for collagen to start working may vary from person to person, it's important to be patient and consistent. Results are cumulative and tend to become more evident over time, with the most noticeable improvements occurring within three to six months. Remember to follow the recommended dosage, maintain a healthy lifestyle, and enjoy the journey towards enhanced skin, hair, nails, and joint health. Embrace collagen supplementation as a long-term investment in your overall wellness and radiance.