Helps Relieve Joint Pain
Collagen helps maintain the integrity of your cartilage, which is the rubber-like tissue that protects your joints.
As the amount of collagen in your body decreases as you get older, your risk of developing degenerative joint disorders such as osteoarthritis increases .
Some studies have shown that taking collagen supplements may help improve symptoms of osteoarthritis and reduce joint pain overall (
In another study, adults took 2 grams of collagen daily for 70 days. Those who took collagen had a significant reduction in joint pain and were better able to engage in physical activity than those who did not take it .
Researchers have theorized that supplemental collagen may accumulate in cartilage and stimulate your tissues to make collagen.
They have suggested this may lead to lower inflammation, better support of your joints, and reduced pain .
If you want to try taking a collagen supplement for its potential pain-relieving effects, studies suggest you should start with a daily dosage of 812 grams .
Taking collagen supplements has been shown to reduce inflammation and stimulate collagen synthesis in the body. This may help promote pain relief among people with joint disorders like osteoarthritis.
Just as the collagen in your body deteriorates as you age, so does bone mass. This may lead to conditions like osteoporosis, which is characterized by low bone density and linked to a higher risk of bone fractures .
Oral Collagen For Rheumatoid Arthritis
|The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details.|
|First Posted : November 4, 1999Last Update Posted : May 29, 2013|
|Drug: Oral bovine type II collagen||Phase 2|
RA is an inflammatory disease that causes pain, swelling, stiffness, and loss of function in the joints. The study will evaluate the effects of using oral bovine CII on RA patients by assessing the levels of inflammation markers such as interferon gamma , interleukin-10 , and transforming growth factor beta . This study is a multicenter clinical trial to be conducted at the University of Tennessee, Memphis and the West Tennessee Medical Specialty Clinic .
Note: this trial is no longer being conducted as an intervention trial. Accrual has been discontinued, although patients previously enrolled are still being followed.
Do Collagen And Glucosamine Help Arthritis
You should know, there are options available other than prescription medications or surgery to address the physical function of your joints.
For example, two natural supplements that have been shown in studies to help alleviate joint discomfort are glucosamine and collagen.
Which sets up the question, how to choose between collagen vs. glucosamine?Glucosamine has been used by many to address their arthritic pain. However, collagen has exploded onto the health and wellness scene especially for its ability to improve joint health.
Pro Tip: Adding collagen peptides to your daily routine can offer other benefits such as thicker hair, fewer deep wrinkles on your face, wrinkles around lips, support sagging skin, better gut health, stronger arteries, bigger muscles and weight loss.
Since both supplements can be helpful supplements for joint health, how do you decide between collagen vs. glucosamine?
Let’s find out…
Make sure you also check our guide to the best infrared heating pads for further help with joint pain reduction.
See the graphic from the Arthritis National Research Foundation below to see what cartilage looks like when your joint is healthyThe lack of cartilage in joints results in a condition called arthritis. There are over 100 different types of arthritis or conditions of arthritis.
In this article, we’re focusing on osteoarthritis.
Common Treatments for Joint Pain
What Are The Other Options
For most of us, there’s also a much cheaper way to keep our skin, bones and joints healthy and that’s exercise.
“Exercise is by far the most powerful medicine available to us,” says Professor Beck.
“The bones that you have will be at their absolutely strongest, the more you exercise, and it’s same for tendons and ligaments.”
Professor Beck says resistance exercise is the best thing you can do for keeping bones, muscles and connective tissue strong and healthy. That includes working out at the gym or lifting weights at home, walking up stairs or doing hill sprints.
“Be patient, start slow and build up gradually,” she says.
Meanwhile, if you want to protect your skin, Dr Beckett suggests avoiding things that accelerate collagen breakdown, such as sun and cigarettes, and eating a healthy diet.
“All those things we know are healthy already, like a good diet, not smoking and staying out of the sun would help, but you can’t put that in a bottle,” says Dr Beckett.
Do Studies Show A Collagen Powder Supplement Is Good For Arthritis
Studies have shown collagen may be beneficial in controlling arthritis.
Back in 2006, there was a study published that indicated oral collagen supplementation could help alleviate the pain and discomfort associated with osteoarthritis.
Also, another study indicated UC-II from chicken sternum showed promise to reduce pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis.
Finally, Roland W. Moskowitz, MD also praised the potential of collagen given its safety and effectiveness. These two factors make using collagen an acceptable treatment in long-term and chronic joint pain.
Certainly, there are prescription medication and NSAIDS that can also help alleviate the pain associated with osteoarthritis.
With this in mind, however, these approaches bring risks and side effects of their own.
In contrast, collagen supplements are generally safe with very few potential side effects and answers the question ‘is collagen good for arthritis?’.
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Impact Of Hcol1 Supplements On Cartilage Structure
Initial analysis of the knee joint articular cartilage involved automated histomorphometry to determine total cartilage area in sagittal sections stained with Toluidine Blue and Fast Green. Stained sections were digitized to images and an âArticular Cartilage Applicationâ was developed on the Visiopharm Platform to streamline the determination of total cartilage area on the femoral condyle and tibial plateau. As we have seen previously in the MLI model of PTOA , the main cartilage changes played out on the tibial plateau, where there was significant total cartilage loss detectable at both 3 weeks and 12 weeks post injury. No changes in femoral condyle articular cartilage area were detected at either 3 or 12 weeks after injury or in any of the experimental groups . Suggesting possible chondroprotective effects of hCol1 supplementation, total tibial cartilage area loss 3 weeks after MLI was prevented in the LD hCol1 group, with the HD group trending toward improvement but missing significance . At the 12 weeks post-MLI time point, hCol1 was dose-dependently protective, with total tibial cartilage area loss mitigated significantly in the HD group, and the LD group trending toward significance . It should be noted that there were no discernable effects of hCol1 supplementation on baseline articular cartilage area . Overall, these results provide the first indication that dietary supplementation with hCol1 could be protective in the development and progression of PTOA.
Final Thoughts On Type 2 Collagen For Arthritis
Though I dont think Type 2 collagen is a miracle supplement for arthritis sufferers, I do think it has potential to attenuate symptoms of arthritis, joint conditions, and other autoimmune diseases especially when administered early in disease progression and/or as an adjunct. Still, I think its efficacy will be subject to significant variation based on an individuals: specific signature of immune activation, gene expression, and the underlying cause of their arthritis. Some people will likely find that type 2 collagen effectively controls their symptoms, some will derive mild-to-moderate benefit, and others will claim that its completely useless .
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Collagen Plays An Important Role In Joint Health
Joints connect bones and make movement possible. They are made up of cartilage, tendons, ligaments and synovial fluid, each of which plays an important role in supporting the joint.
Synovial fluid keeps the joint well-lubricated, while cartilage acts as a cushion protecting bones from trauma and friction. Tendons and ligaments are connective tissues that give structure, strength and flexibility to the joint.
There are a number of joints in the human body, each one supporting the kind of movement we associate with normal activity. During the course of our lives we are constantly moving, putting pressure on the joints, and as we age this can take its toll on the cartilage which can become damaged, leading to discomfort.
Now for the key fact: joints are 70% collagen, a fibrous protein that gives the body strength and structure. Collagen is actually a key structural component of cartilage. So maintaining sufficient levels of collagen is essential for keeping joints healthy and flexible.
How Does Collagen Support Our Bones And Teeth
Collagen makes up 90% of our organic bone mass. Its fibers form the protein matrix in our bones, and as we age, our bones lose a lot of strength and elasticity due to collagen loss. Increasing collagen intake can increase bone mineral density, which is key to preventing bone fractures. Collagen is also the main component of teeth, and so daily supplementation can help with strengthening your teeth and preventing them from increasing in sensitivity!
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After working in integrative and functional medicine as a chiropractor and nutritionist for over 15 years, Dr. Chris Oswald joined Further Food as Chief Science Officer in charge of new product development. On top of his list of new products to creat…
Collagen Carries A Lot Of Promise For Your Skin Hair Nails And More But Can It Actually Help Joint Pain Were Sharing Just How Effective This Protein Could Be For Achy Joints
Collagen is everywhere right now. Its in your local grocery stores supplement aisle, in powder and pill form its on your bathroom counter, mixed into your favorite skincare products. Youll even find collagen blended into smoothies and sprinkled into mugs of coffee. Touted as a nutrient that can strengthen everything from your hair and nails to your achy joints, collagen almost seems too good to be true.
And collagen is gaining popularity for good reason. Its actually a key protein that the body needs. You could even call it one of the bodys hidden building blocks one that could bring good news for achy, painful joints.
Collagen could help your joints move more smoothly and with less pain. If youve been thinking about giving collagen a try, here are 4 potential benefits for hopping on this trend thats here to stay.
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If You Stop Taking It Will Joint Pain Return
Among individuals who respond well to collagen, many want to know whether ceasing supplementation and/or cycling off of it for a period of time will result in a relapse of symptoms. For a majority of the population with arthritis and/or joint pain, discontinuation of collagen supplementation will result in symptomatic resurgence. Assuming you derived therapeutic benefit from collagen, if you discontinue its supplementation, unwanted symptoms of joint pain will likely return within several weeks.
In rare cases, it is reasonable to suspect that, timely supplementation with type 2 collagen may disrupt the onset of osteoarthritis, and if continued for a sufficient duration, the supplementation might reverse the condition until it is effectively cured. In these rare cases, cessation of supplementation wont lead to a return of joint pain because the joints will have regenerated and immune attacks will cease. That said, all patients with rheumatoid arthritis should expect a relapse after discontinuation.
Do Collagen Supplements Work
While we can make the amino acids necessary to produce more collagen from other foods in our diet, consuming dietary collagen appears to be far more effective for replacing collagen than making collagen from other sources. The reason for this is that not only does eating dietary collagen provide more of the amino acids necessary when you consume collagen.
It also tells specific cells in your skin to make more collagen. This has been shown to work in humans when sufficiently large quantities of collagen supplements are consumed . Collagen supplements have been studied over the last several decades, and there are two main areas where there is good evidence to support collagen supplementation: skin and joint pain.
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Forms Used In Supplements
Similarly to how your body contains different types of this protein, so do many collagen supplements.
The most used types include (
- Hydrolyzed collagen . This type is derived from bovine , marine , poultry , pigs, and other animal sources, and its broken down into smaller and easier-to-absorb peptide particles.
- Undenatured collagen. This is raw collagen derived from chicken cartilage.
- Gelatin: This is cooked collagen, usually derived from animal sources.
The type used in your supplement of choice could influence the supplement form and its dosage instructions.
Note that there arent any vegan substitutes for collagen. Supplements may be free of dairy, gluten, or sugar, but collagen is only available from animal sources.
It Can Help To Build Muscle
Theres increasing evidence that taking collagen can actually help you build muscle and possibly lose a bit of fat! You cant take the collagen alone, though, and sit back and wait for it to work. The key is to take it in conjunction with an exercise and/or weight-lifting routine. So, please consult your doctor or another health professional if you need or would like to start a new exercise routine.
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We Continue Our Collagen Journey
In case you missed parts 1 and 2 of this series, you can see them here:
- What is Collagen? 4 Things You Must Know
- Bone Broths and Collagen Powders A Hidden Danger
I went into my research on collagen with an open mind and ready to see what I could see. The benefit of collagen for a certain condition appears to be valid, so lets review what that disease is and if I recommend you should use collagen to help with this condition.
Which Collagen Is Best For Joints
There are three main types of collagen present in the body.
Cartilage is primarily made up of type II collagen, a tough variety made from animal cartilage which gives cartilage the strength to support joints.
Therefore, type II collagen is the type recommended to help with joint issues.7
While collagen cant repair or grow back lost cartilage, studies have shown some improvement in flexibility following supplementation with both hydrolysed and non-hydrolysed collagen.
One 2013 study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition found that 40mg of non-hydrolysed type II collagen daily led to improved knee joint extension and reduced discomfort during strenuous exercise.8
A separate 24-week study in the USA in 2008 found that joint discomfort in athletes was improved after they took a dietary supplement of hydrolysed collagen.9
So, for joint health, choose a type II collagen supplement.
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Studies About Collagen And Arthritis
Since collagen is one of the major ingredients for bone elasticity and a reduction in joint inflammation, many studies have looked at the benefit of collagen and how it could help fight joint pain in individuals with the two most common forms of arthritis- osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis . The following studies have looked closely at the role of collagen in joint health, and how taking collagen supplements can help reduce arthritis and joint pain:
In 1998, researchers from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center studied the effects of four dosages of type II collagen on 274 study participants. The doses were 20, 100, 500, or 2,500 microg/day for a total of 24 weeks. At the end of the study, even the patients in the lowest dose group showed a reduction in stiffness and pain by 30 percent or more.
In 2002, the Creighton University Medical looked at 5 women between the ages of 58 and 78 who had rheumatoid arthritis. The study looked at collagen as an autoantigen, which can help suppress the autoimmune system. RA is usually an autoimmune disorder, where the body stimulates the immune system needlessly, leading to excessive pain and inflammation. The study found that supplementing with type II collagen was able to increase tolerance in the autoimmune system, leading to a reduction in swelling and joint pain. At the end of the trial period of 42 days, the women showed significantly lower joint pain and swelling than at the beginning of the study.