Does Collagen Cause Weight Gain?
No...we break down the science below.
Collagen is a buzz-worthy supplement that practically everyone you know seems to be taking. From your favorite influencers to your best friends, collagen is definitely making the rounds. You might be ready to try it yourself, there’s just one little concern: weight gain.
Wondering if collagen will cause you to gain weight is a pretty common concern. We hear it all the time. After all, collagen is the most abundant protein in your body.
If you’re collagen curious but concerned about weight gain, you’ve come to the right place. We’ll cover how collagen works in the body, what causes you to gain weight, and whether or not collagen will cause you to pack on the pounds.
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WHAT DOES COLLAGEN DO FOR YOUR BODY?
To be such a small little protein, collagen has a huge role in our bodies. It’s a vital part of every major organ and helps keep us feeling (and looking) youthful.
Collagen is a foundational building block of our bodies, making up our ligaments, bones, tendons, skin, and other important issues. Here’s what taking collagen supplements can help do for your body.
HELPS BUILD MUSCLE
Collagen makes up to 10% of your muscle tissue, making it a vital component in the quest for gaining muscle mass. It’s also suspected that collagen helps synthesize creatine, another muscle protein required for getting more beefy gains.
Building muscle is important not only for your short-term goals of looking great at the beach, but also for long-term goals of protecting your bones, keeping you strong, and helps to avoid injury.
In terms of weight, the more muscle mass you carry, the more effectively your body burns calories and fat, which means that having more lean muscle mass can help you keep healthy body weight under control. Thus, the key to a speedier metabolism is in the amount of muscle you have.
Bone health may not be at the forefront of your thoughts right now, but as you age, your bone density decreases, and it can be a real issue that puts you at risk of fractures and injuries that, in some cases, could be life-threatening.
Your bones are made mostly of collagen, so taking a collagen supplement can help support them and keep them strong and healthy, protecting you against age-related bone deterioration.
IMPROVES JOINT HEALTH
As we age, the cartilage between our joints begins to break down. This cartilage is made up of collagen, so taking a collagen supplement can help support joint health, reduce joint pain, and promote continued mobility.
The compound in your skin that keeps it looking youthful and firm is, you guessed it, collagen. Collagen is what “plumps up” your skin, prevents fine lines and wrinkles, assists hydration, and keeps your skin looking and feeling firm.
As we age, our collagen production slows, which can lead to thinning, sagging skin that looks older than we actually are.
Collagen supplements, along with topical collagen products that promote your skin's elasticity and natural collagen production, can help your skin regain youthfulness, reduce the appearance of cellulite, and maintain texture and tone.
In addition to skin health, collagen is also a vital component of your hair and nails. Many users take collagen to support hair growth, and strong, healthy nails.
Collagen is also a crucial component of keeping your heart and circulatory system healthy and functional.
Collagen makes up the walls of your arteries and gives them structure. When your arteries don’t have enough collagen, they can become weak and fragile, which can lead to significant negative health impacts.
WEIGHT GAIN: HOW IT HAPPENS
Collagen is incredibly beneficial to the body, but if you’re afraid of weight gain, that’s a valid concern. Weight gain can happen to anyone, and there are a few ways those extra pounds can creep up on you.
We have a tendency to complicate things that are pretty cut and dry. In terms of weight gain, we’ve really made a mess of something that is fairly straightforward.
The simple fact is that most of the time, weight gain happens because of an excess amount of calories in your diet.
When you over-consume calories, your body stores them as fat. It doesn’t really matter whether your excess calories are from fat, carbohydrates, or protein. If your body doesn’t need them, they get stored as extra weight.
Eating just 500 extra calories a day is enough to cause you to gain a pound of extra weight per week, so it’s easy to see how weight can sneak up on you unexpectedly.
Our lifestyle is also a key factor in determining our weight. Many of us have jobs that require us to be behind a computer screen or at a desk the majority of our day.
If we aren’t getting enough exercise outside of work, we’re putting ourselves at risk of gaining weight and causing a decline in our overall health.
It’s important to get enough cardiovascular exercise to support heart health, and weight-bearing exercises improve our musculoskeletal system and help support bone health.
In some cases, there may be an underlying condition that’s preventing you from losing weight. Hormone imbalances, thyroid issues, and certain autoimmune disorders can all cause you to carry unexplained weight.
Medications, too, can be the source of weight gain, but most often, the weight gain associated with medications is a side effect that will dissipate over time.
DOES COLLAGEN CAUSE WEIGHT GAIN?
No, collagen does not cause you to gain weight.
Collagen won’t cause you to explode with such massive increases of muscle in the gym that you’ll put on twenty pounds of muscle, and aside from helping you build muscle, there’s nothing in a collagen supplement that would cause you to gain weight.
In fact, collagen is actually a vital tool in helping you maintain a healthy weight. Here’s how.
Raise your hand if you’ve ever blamed your weight gain on a sluggish metabolism. You can supercharge your metabolism by taking a collagen supplement in addition to your healthy diet and active lifestyle.
Collagen helps you build lean muscle mass, and building lean muscle mass helps your body burn calories more efficiently, supporting your metabolism.
COLLAGEN HELPS YOU FEEL FULL
Overconsumption of calories can often occur because we don’t feel full. While we usually attempt to eat more refined carbohydrates, the macronutrients that make us feel satiety are fats and proteins.
Taking collagen protein can help provide feelings of fullness for longer, which can help you avoid eating unnecessary calories. They may also help suppress hunger hormones, like ghrelin. Some research has even shown that collagen protein powder, collagen gelatin, and collagen supplements are more filling than other protein powders like soy, casein, and whey.
HOW TO SUPPLEMENT WITH COLLAGEN
You can use collagen supplements and skincare products that encourage and support collagen production in your daily routine to promote your skin health and overall wellness.
It’s important to choose a bioavailable collagen supplement that is easily absorbed by your body and clinically proven to work effectively. While collagen-rich foods like bone broth, and foods that encourage collagen formation through vitamin C, these are not the most effective way to increase the grams of collagen absorbed by your body.
Collagen that is found in supplements is normally sourced from animals. However, there are vegan options available through the modern marvels of engineering. Collagen sourced from animals is not all created equally.
Bovine collagen powder, for instance, can include GMOs and artificial hormones, and the cows are often housed using inhumane practices instead of being grass-fed or pasture-raised. They may also include artificial flavor and sweeteners that aren't conducive to your overall health.
It can also be difficult for your body to digest the collagen within these mammalian supplements because there are so many fillers and binders surrounding the collagen peptides.
On the other hand, Marine collagen is derived from the scales of deep-sea fish and made of smaller amino acids that are more bioavailable to humans. Hydrolyzed marine collagen supplements available from One Ocean Beauty help promote skin rejuvenation, promote your skin’s natural collagen production, and inhibit dark spots of hyperpigmentation.
COLLAGEN SKIN CARE
In addition to taking a once-daily collagen supplement, you can increase collagen through skincare with collagen-boosting ingredients. One Ocean Beauty’s Radiance Ritual Set contains our supplements and our ultra-hydrating, collagen-boosting moisturizer.
Using both products helps your skin improve its collagen production, slowing down significantly as you get older. Your skin can feel more hydrated and healthier in the long run.
Taking a collagen supplement will not cause you to gain weight. In fact, it can help support you on your weight loss journey along with proper diet and exercise. Collagen is beneficial to your bones, muscles, hair, skin, and nails. It also helps to improve your heart health.
The collagen available from One Ocean Beauty has been derived from fish scale molecules and created in a lab to ensure quality, purity, and preservation of one of the earth’s most abundant resources, the ocean.
Our commitment to quality and purity extends from our skincare line to our business model, where we partner with Oceana to help restore and preserve the world’s oceans.
Structure and Function of the Skeletal Muscle Extracellular Matrix | NCBI