Pregnancy is a time of transformation for the body. Despite the many precautions taken during this important stage, certain challenges can arise during pregnancy and after childbirth: joint pain, hair loss, appearance of stretch marks and loss of elasticity of the skin causing a delay in healing.
This is where collagen comes in. This natural body protein can offer some very interesting benefits for pregnant women.
In this article we compile and summarize articles from the Anglo-Saxon literature and the results of a clinical study:
We'll explore how collagen can help keep skin elastic and supple during pregnancy while strengthening bones and joints.
What is collagen?
Collagen is an important protein for the body. It is even the most abundant protein, making up 85% of skin tissue, 85% of cartilage and tendons. Collagen is therefore important for the repair of damaged tissues. It is particularly used by people wishing to improve the elasticity of connective tissues or who suffer from joint pain.
Loss of collagen during pregnancy
Collagen levels in the body naturally decline from the age of 25. But this phenomenon can accelerate during pregnancy due to hormonal changes and increased pressure on joints and muscles.
This loss of collagen can lead to problems such as joint pain, less elastic skin and the appearance of stretch marks. Stretch marks are especially common during pregnancy due to the rapid growth of the uterus and the increase in breast size.
The loss of collagen can also affect the health of tendons and ligaments, which can increase the risk of injury during childbirth. Also, looser skin can lead to a loss of tone and firmness, which can make it more difficult to regain fitness after childbirth.
It is important to note that collagen loss can start early in pregnancy and can continue after delivery.
The benefits of collagen during pregnancy
The benefits of collagen for joint pain
Many clinical studies have shown the effects of collagen on joint pain and also on osteoporosis by allowing the body to form new cartilage and bone renewal.
During pregnancy, the body produces a hormone called relaxin to allow the muscles around the uterus to relax as the baby grows and to make childbirth easier. It is this hormone that can be responsible for causing pain in the knees or hips.
Consuming collagen will therefore have a beneficial effect for women suffering from this ailment during pregnancy and after childbirth. It will also facilitate the return to sport by supporting tissue elasticity and bone health.
The benefits to prevent the appearance of stretch marks
Stretch marks are marks that can appear on the body during pregnancy as a result of rapid weight gain. They are caused by the breakdown of collagen and elastin fibers in the skin.
Studies have shown that consuming collagen can help strengthen the skin and reduce the risk of stretch marks by increasing the production of collagen and elastin in the body. Taking 5g of collagen per day for 8 weeks increases the elasticity of the skin by 20%.
It is important to note that results may vary from person to person and consuming collagen cannot guarantee the absence of stretch marks. However, combining collagen consumption with a healthy diet and exercise can help strengthen the skin and reduce the risk of stretch marks.
The benefits for the cervix
During pregnancy, the cervix can undergo hormonal and mechanical changes that can affect its health. Collagen can help strengthen the tissues of the cervix and prevent abnormalities and damage by strengthening the tissues and improving their resistance, thus helping to reduce the risk of complications during pregnancy.
The benefits of collagen after pregnancy
The benefits for hair loss
Postpartum is a time of great change. Postpartum hair loss can be caused by factors such as hormonal changes, lack of nutrients, and stress.
Collagen plays an important role in hair health. Consuming collagen can help strengthen hair and prevent hair loss by improving the production of keratin, the protein that gives hair its structure.
Studies have shown that consuming collagen can help strengthen hair and make it thicker, which can reduce postpartum hair loss.
The healing benefits
Collagen contributes to good healing thanks to its repairing effects on the tissues of the skin. It is therefore particularly recommended after childbirth.
The benefits would be mainly due to the formation of new capillaries in the uterine scar tissue, the growth and repair of collagen fibers and smooth muscle tissue.
It is important to note that the consumption of collagen cannot guarantee complete healing after childbirth and that other factors can influence healing. It is always advisable to consult a doctor for advice on postpartum scarring.
How to consume collagen?
Our recommendation during pregnancy is to consume 15g per day of collagen to maximize the benefits mentioned in this article.
You can thus consume for example: