How much vitamin C is needed for collagen production?

Find out how much vitamin C is needed for collagen production.

In the world of friendships, Vitamin C would be considered as collagen’s true friend. While each nutrient is packed with powerful health benefits individually, when it comes to working together, they do a stellar job. Collagen cannot be formed in the absence of vitamin C. Vitamin C is needed for collagen production and the stabilization of the collagen molecule, which our bodies benefit greatly by. Try to think of collagen as the glue that holds our bodies together and help give us a youthful appearance.H

Hardly anyone refutes the wonderful benefits of collagen these days. But how much vitamin C is needed for collagen production exactly? Let’s find out, but first, let us have a look at what collagen is exactly?

Why is collagen so wonderful?

Simply looking at the collagen molecule alone, affirms why it is considered a supermolecule. This complex structure consists of 3 polypeptide chains, coiled to form a helical strand. These helical strands then twist to form a superhelix that forms the collagen molecule. Vitamin C, collagen’s best buddy, forms an integral part of collagen’s formation every step of the way. It is involved from the initial procollagen structure to the very final collagen molecule.

It is a protein that is abundant in our bodies, but as we age our bodies produce less of it. Collagen is responsible for roughly 70 % of the weight of skin alone. Much of the interest in collagen today has to do with looking younger, but there are many other benefits too. Collagen looks after your joints, bones, muscles, heart, gut, and brain.

Environmental pollution, smoking, UV radiation, aging, and other physical stressors deplete the collagen reserves and we end up with thinner and saggy skin, stiff joints, blood pressure problems, and other symptoms.

Fortunately, we can do something about declining collagen levels, either by changing our diets or supplementing with vitamin C and collagen peptides. These can be taken under the supervision of a healthcare professional, because too much collagen can cause problems, such as heart attacks and high blood pressure. Low blood pressure on the other hand is sometimes associated with low levels of collagen.

Exactly how much vitamin C is needed for collagen production in each individual will best be determined by a health professional who will be able to assess a vitamin C deficiency with a simple blood test and make recommendations accordingly.

So how much vitamin C is needed for collagen production generally?

Vitamin C is a water-soluble nutrient, which means the body will excrete what it doesn’t need via the kidneys and urine. Because our bodies do not produce vitamin C, we need to get a daily dose from a balanced diet that contains enough vitamin C rich fruits and veggies. This daily dose should provide enough vitamin C needed for collagen production.

The daily recommended dose of vitamin C for healthy adults ranges between 15 to 75 mg for children, 75 mg for adult women, 90 mg for adult men, and 85 to 120 mg for pregnant or lactating mothers. Smokers need an average of 35 mg more. The scientist, Linus Pauling advocated dosages of 2000 mg a day, especially for those with compromised immune systems whose bodies need more. Following the regular RDA is considered safe, but it is recommended to seek the opinion of a medical practitioner if you want to take higher dosages.

A simple blood test can determine if you are vitamin C deficient. If the body has sufficient amounts of vitamin C available, collagen can be produced.

Make sure you get your daily dose of vitamin C to keep those collagen levels up.

Most notably, research has found that taking vitamin C and collagen together, before intermittent exercise, in fact, amplifies collagen synthesis. Taking between 10 to 15 grams of collagen alongside 50 mg of vitamin C, which is roughly the amount you would find in an orange, doubled the collagen levels in joints.

Take away

Getting our daily dose of vitamin C remains undeniably crucial if we want to maintain optimal collagen levels. Your own individual needs would dictate how much vitamin C is needed for collagen production. If you are deficient in the nutrient, your body would need more in order to produce collagen. Daily recommended dosages for vitamin C are a good guideline to go by for healthy individuals.

Supplementing with collagen peptides or hydrolyzed collagen (same thing), has been proven effective in stimulating collagen production too, especially in the skin. Taking collagen peptides alongside vitamin C rich fruits and veggies will also help maintain and boost collagen levels. Generally, most products or brands recommend a serving size of about 10 to 20 grams of collagen, which equals 1 to 2 scoops. Follow recommended dosages as stated on the packaging, unless advised differently by your doctor.

Taking dietary supplements should always be done alongside the guidance of a medical practitioner. This article was not written or overseen by a medical professional and should not be viewed as advice or diagnostic information.

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Cautionary note: Not any of these statements have been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The content of the articles and the products recommended are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health issue. The intention is also not to imply that vitamins or any dietary supplements are substitutes for a balanced diet or are in any way more beneficial or superior to dietary nutrients. It is also not intended to imply that general or normal health may be affected by not taking dietary supplements or receiving intravenous vitamin C infusions.

Image credit: Karolina Grabowska via Pexels

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