Collagen is an important protein which is required by the human body for supporting the various connective tissues in the human body. It is even more important for the building of muscles, joints and bones of the body. It is also required to give the skin the elasticity, smoothness. With age collagen formation decreases in individuals and this leads to the formation of wrinkles, sagging of skin, osteoporosis and even osteoarthritis. Therefore, it will be very helpful for elderly individuals to have an in-depth knowledge about the best sources of collagen.
It has been found that when sailors in the eighteenth century used to return back home, they would often have disfigured skin and missing teeth. Giving the sailors oranges to eat helped them to cure them of the problem. Vitamin C found in fruits like oranges help in ample collagen formation in the human body. This vitamin C helps in the linking up of the amino acids chain and forming collagen in the body of the person. A medium sized orange contains about seventy milligram of vitamin C which then leads to the formation of collagen in the body of the elderly person.
Gelatin, which has been boiled, helps in the unwinding of the helical structure of the protein, collagen and helps in the creation of a mass of protein threads. When the individual finds the collagen soup cooling down, the protein absorbs the water and forms the gelatin. When it becomes dry, it takes the form of a dry yellow powder which can be easily reconstituted by adding water to it. Gelatin has little color, odor or flavor to it. Sugar, food flavoring and coloring turn the gelatin soup into a delicious dessert or pudding. Gelatin forms the base ingredient for many popular dessert and candies.
Like the nutrient vitamin C, the body of an individual also requires amino acid lysine from the food that he consumes. Lysine has been found by doctors as a great compound which helps in the boosting of the collagen formation. Cod fish contains sufficient amount of lysine. Many doctors suggest that cod fish can be consumed by individuals in place of chicken which is a low source of lysine. Hundred grams of serving of cod fish has about five hundred grams of lysine.
Green tea has been found to be a good protector of the collagen found in the skin of an individual. The green tea helps in fighting against the enzymes which lead to the breakdown of the collagen in the body. It is also rich in phenolic acid which is a good compound to prevent any tissue injury. The green tea also has a high amount of antioxidants which prevents the formation of free radicals which cause damage to the cells of the skin. Consuming two to three cups of green tea is usually considered good for the health of an elderly individual. The antioxidants and the prevention of various enzymes by the green tea helps in avoiding diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and cancer in people.
Sulphur rich foods
Sulphur rich foods are also good sources of collagen. They help in the production of collagen in the body of the person and help to delay the process of deterioration caused due to insufficient collagen in the body. Green olives, black olives, celery stalks, fresh cucumbers are all good sources of collagen. The vegetables that the individual consume are a good source of vitamin A and this when combined with sulphur helps immensely in collagen formation.
Soybeans and other soy products
Soybeans are a great source of collagen forming agents in the human body. An elderly individual can therefore incorporate soy products in his diet and can be assured that consuming these products will increase the collagen formation in his body. Soy milk, soy cheese, meat substitutes like genistein all aid in the formation of collagen. Soy milk can be added to the breakfast cereal by elderly individuals or can be included in the meals to derive the benefits of the soy.
Omega 3 fatty acids
Omega 3 fatty acids are very important for collagen formation in your body. As one age, the collagen formation in the body decreases. To ensure that the level of collagen formation is kept at the right level, foods containing omega 3 fatty acids should be consumed. Salmon, tuna, mackerel, halibut, herring, are some fishes which can be consumed by an individual as it is a great source of omega 3 fatty acids. These fish promote collagen formation in your body and help in prevention of many diseases. For vegetarians, omega 3 fatty acids source include cashew nuts, almonds which help amply in the production of collagen formation.
Red fruits and vegetables
Clinical research conducted around the world has proved that red fruits and vegetables also are good agents which help in collagen formation in our body. The red fruits and vegetables contain a compound known as lycopenes which act as antioxidants and also help in aiding the formation of collagen in your body. The lycopenes act as antioxidant compounds and are therefore helpful in eradicating free radicals which often pose problems in collagen formation. Red fruits and vegetables include tomatoes, red peppers and beets.
Foods rich in vitamin A
Foods which have a high amount of vitamin A in them are also important agents which help in boosting up of collagen formation in the body of an elderly individual. Including foods which have high amount of vitamin A in them is a beneficial step an individual can take for increasing the collagen formation. Carrots and sweet potatoes are extremely good sources of vitamin A. Roasted or baked sweet potatoes are good sources of vitamin A. Carrots can be consumed raw to derive the maximum benefits from the food. Melons and cantaloupe are good collagen forming fruits. Adding cantaloupe to a bowl of breakfast cereals help in the formation of collagen.