Does collagen help to reduce hair loss in menopause? Can collagen regrow the hair I have lost? What type of collagen should I take? Are vegan sources just as good as animal sources?

Collagen is a vital component of various body structures, including the skin, hair, nails, bones, tendons, ligaments, muscles, and blood vessels. Its importance and abundance in different tissues have led to the growth of the collagen supplement industry. In this article, we will explore the benefits of collagen for hair and skin and delve into the question: Does collagen help with hair loss?

Key Takeaways – The Short Version

Collagen has no evidence to support it’s use for hair growth. Collagen does has a lot of data to back up it’s use in skin hydration, elasticity and fine lines. Collagen been shown to improve bone mineral density in women over the age of 60. Quality and efficacy of products varies greatly, for Flo Hive collagen picks click HERE

Understanding types of collagen

Collagen comes in different types, each serving a specific function in the body. In fact there are over 28 different types. Let’s take a closer look at the four main types of collagen:

Type 1 Collagen

Type 1 collagen is the most common type found in the body, accounting for 90% of the total collagen content. It is present in the skin, bones, tendons, and teeth. A deficiency in type 1 collagen can occur due to a low intake of vitamin C or a genetic mutation known as Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

Type 2 Collagen

Type 2 collagen is primarily found in the joint capsule and is a key component of elastic cartilage. It provides tensile strength and elasticity, making it essential for joint health.

Type 3 Collagen

Type 3 collagen serves as a structural supporter of the lungs, intestines, blood vessels, and skin. Its elasticity is particularly important in coping with the dynamic nature of the organs it covers.

Type 4 Collagen

Type 4 collagen acts as a barrier between the epithelial and endothelial layers. It functions as a filter, preventing fluids and molecules from spreading to surrounding tissues. Type 4 collagen also separates the dermal from the epidermal layer.

Flo Hive Science Scoop – collagen and menopause

There is not a SINGLE STUDY that has been done with humans to show that collagen reduces hair loss or that it promotes hair growth. Not one. There is a lot of research to support the use of collagen for skin (ie. wrinkles and skin elasticity).

So if you are already taken collagen please don’t throw it in the bin!

What we do have however – are THEORIES. The theories are based on how we know collagen acts in the body. And therefore how it could assist hair.

1. Theory – provides building blocks for hair

Hair is primarily composed of a protein called keratin. To synthesize keratin, your cells require various amino acids. Collagen, being rich in amino acids such as proline, glycine, and hydroxyproline, can provide the necessary building blocks for hair. This, in turn, may promote thicker and healthier hair growth.

2. Theory – neutralizes free radicals

Collagen possesses potent antioxidative properties, making it effective against oxidative stress caused by free radicals. Free radicals can damage hair follicles, leading to hair loss. By supplementing the body with collagen, you can potentially counteract the damaging effects of free radicals and protect your hair.

3. Theory – supports the dermis and hair follicles

The dermis, which contains the roots of hair follicles, is rich in collagen. Hair loss often coincides with a depletion of collagen in the dermis, which can result in thinning hair. By providing your body with collagen, you may help support the dermis and promote healthy hair growth.

4. Theory – slows down the process of graying

Collagen’s antioxidative properties can possible combat the graying process. While genetics play a significant role in age-related gray hair, free radicals can accelerate the process. By supplementing with collagen, which has antioxidative activity, you may potentially slow down the premature graying of hair.

But as Flo Hive said – these are theories……Collagen and skin however has much more robust science behind it.

Collagen and skin benefits in menopause

Apart from its potential role in hair health, collagen offers various benefits for the integumentary system, which includes the skin and nails.

Benefits for skin

As you age, your body produces less collagen, leading to a loss of skin elasticity and hydration issues. Supplementing with collagen has been shown to improve skin moisture, elasticity, and overall appearance. In a study, participants who received collagen supplementation saw significant improvements in skin hydration and elasticity after eight weeks.

Benefits for nails

Brittle nail syndrome is a common condition characterized by roughness, peeling, and raggedness of the nails. Collagen supplementation has been found to improve nail growth rate and reduce the frequency of broken nails. Participants in a study reported a 42% reduction in broken nails.

Collagen and bone health benefits in menopause

This study had 102 post-menopausal women take either a collagen supplement or placebo for 12 months. Average age of the women was 62 years old. After a year they found that those taking collagen had increased bone mineral density. It had improved around 5% in just 12 months. This is very impressive.

So if you are looking for more reasons other than improved skin – bone health is definitely one reason to supplement with collagen.

Vegan collagen

Plant-based collagen products do not contain collagen. Collagen supplements only come from animals (cows or marine sources). Vegan collagen supplements contain the building blocks for collagen. But it is completely unknown if these building blocks will be put back together in your body as collagen. They have not been studied. They are a complete mystery.

It is one thing to buy all the ingredients for a cake, but if you just throw all the ingredients in a bowl and don’t cook it properly – can you still call it a cake? Not really.

What to look for in a supplement

There are a lot of options out there. And it can be extremely confusing. Flo Hive has devised a simple list of what your collagen product needs. Anything on top of these basics are just going to add to the cost of your collagen powder. And are not necessary.

Collagen doesn’t really have any taste, adding flavoring is not needed.

1. Hydrolized collagen OR collagen peptides: your body can absorb these types more easily. So you get a more potent dose of collagen after you ingest it.

2. Type 1 and 3 collagen: these are most abundant types in your body (and skin). It is not necessary to take a supplement with type 2 or 4. A lot of companies will try to convince you otherwise – just ignore them!

3. Dosage: you cannot absorb more than 10 grams of collagen at any one time. And you don’t need more than 10 grams per day. Therefore, if the label states there is 20 grams per serve then take half the dose. Your product will last twice as long and save you money.

4. Non GMO and grass fed: if taking Bovine sourced collagen these cows have not been fed antibiotics, hormones and not fed genetically modified organisms (GMO).

5. No added artificial sweeteners

We recommend products and services based on their research backing, as determined by a review of clinical studies. We receive compensation when readers purchase the products or services we recommend.

Flo Hive top picks are –

Conclusion

While the potential benefits of collagen for hair loss are promising, the scientific evidence for human trials is non-existent. However for skin elasticity and moisture – there is a large body of research to support this.

Choose good quality brands that don’t have any added extras that you don’t need to pay for. The picks above by Flo Hive are good quality and meet the necessary requirements for collagen supplementation. You don’t need all the bells and whistles of some other high end collagen brands.

Flo Hive has also researched other hair regrowth and hair loss products.

If you would like to read our reviews click on the links below:

Rogaine (proven results)

Rosemary oil (proven results)

Microneedling (proven results)

Red Light Therapy Helmets (proven results)

Biotin (no proof for hair regrowth)

Vegamour (no proof for hair regrowth, but may help hair loss due to secret ingredient)

Caffeine topicals (won’t assist hair regrowth but can assist hair shedding)

Remember, hair loss can be caused by many things. It is essential to check with your healthcare provider to rule out any underlying issues aside from menopause. Such as thyroid dysfunction, iron deficiency and stress – just to name a few.

References

https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/medicine-and-dentistry/collagen-type-2

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2881779/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4201279/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28266664/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23949208/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28786550/

https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/10/1/97

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