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Collagen powder -- proof or poof?

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

In the 2009 film "Julie & Julia," a blogger played by Amy Adams attempts to cook her way through Julia Child's iconic tome "Mastering the Art of French Cooking." When she encounters a recipe for aspic, she says, with a touch of sarcasm, "Aspic is sort of a beef-flavored Jell-O mold. Doesn't that sound delicious?" But whether you like it or not, there's one aspect of aspic that neither Julia nor Julie seemed to realize: A protein in this dish -- collagen -- may do wonders for your skin.

Although aspic isn't on menus very often these days, folks are gobbling up collagen -- the main structural protein of skin, connective tissues, tendons and cartilage -- in supplement tablets, gummies and powders ($98 million worth this year).

The trend is fueled by small studies linking collagen supplementation to improved skin appearance, less-brittle nails and reduced pain from osteoarthritis. And folks hope it will reverse age-related collagen loss that causes wrinkles, crepey skin and weaker joints and muscles.

But your best bet, says the Cleveland Clinic, is:

-- Eat foods containing the amino acids that are the building blocks of collagen in your body: chicken (skinless), fish, egg whites and nonfat dairy. The powdered collagen may not make it through your stomach acid, but food's building blocks of collagen will!

-- Get collagen-building vitamin C from fruits, red and green peppers and greens; and zinc and copper from nuts, whole grains and beans.

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If you do take supplements, use hydrolyzed collagen powder, and make sure it's sourced and manufactured reliably.

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Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit www.sharecare.com.

(c) 2018 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

(c) 2018 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.
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