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Which Foods Are Best for Boosting Collagen Production?

Malcolm Tatum
Updated May 16, 2024
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Deriving its name from the Greek word kolla, collagen is a vital protein that helps to keep the body functioning. Fortunately, there are a number of foods that help to support the creation of collagen within our bodies, even without eating meat. Here are a few examples of the many different foods that provide the building blocks for the collagen production.

Soy products such as soymilk and cheese contain an isoflavone known as genistein. The presence of genistein gives soy products their collagen production qualities, as well as helping to block enzymes that tend to break down and age the skin. Just about any soy product contains enough genistein to be helpful, including soy products that have been developed as substitutes for meat products.

Dark green vegetables are also excellent examples of foods containing collagen-producing agents. Rich in Vitamin C, regular consumption of kale, spinach, collards, and asparagus helps to strengthen the body’s ability to manufacture collagen and to utilize the protein effectively.

Eating red fruits and vegetables is an excellent way to increase the production of collagen. The presence of lycopene in these types of foods acts as an antioxidant, which in turn increases collagen production. Try adding red peppers, beets, and fresh or stewed tomatoes to the diet. Similarly, darker berries, such as blueberries and blackberries also help to boost the antioxidant level in the body and stimulate the production of collagen.

The presence of omega-3 fatty acids also helps to create an ideal environment for collagen production. Fish such as salmon and tuna are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Nuts such as cashews, pecans, almonds and Brazil nuts contain healthy amounts as well. For a snack that promotes healthy production of collagen, try making an avocado dip. Avocados contain the same omega fatty acids as fish, and are digested just as easily.

Foods that are rich in sulfur content are also important to collagen production. Among these are green and black olives, fresh cucumbers, and fresh stalks of celery. Working in conjunction with the sulfur, vegetables that are rich in Vitamin A also aid in keeping collagen levels high. Try adding raw carrots, fresh cantaloupe and baked sweet potatoes to the diet for an extra boost.

One of the key points to keep in mind is that it is possible to provide everything your body needs to produce collagen by eating a balanced diet. By including some of the foods mentioned here, you will soon begin to see a difference in the quality of your skin tone, as well as having an improved sense of overall health.

DelightedCooking is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Malcolm Tatum
By Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum, a former teleconferencing industry professional, followed his passion for trivia, research, and writing to become a full-time freelance writer. He has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including DelightedCooking, and his work has also been featured in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and newspapers. When not writing, Malcolm enjoys collecting vinyl records, following minor league baseball, and cycling.

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Discussion Comments
By anon999311 — On Dec 04, 2017

Post 15 asked why it cause for him/her breakouts. It's because collagen supplements are high in arginine amino acid.

By anon943112 — On Mar 31, 2014

So, is animal collagen bad for you then, and if they already have used the animal for meat for meals, why not get the full use out of the remains if it's healthy to be consumed, that is?

By anon940872 — On Mar 20, 2014

If someone is diagnosed with scleroderma, does that mean they should not eat these foods?

By maan — On Mar 11, 2014

How does one promote or maintain a bone growth index?

By anon315930 — On Jan 26, 2013

Is it true that certain seaweed from Sabah contains collagen like they claimed - pure marine collagen?

By anon109364 — On Sep 07, 2010

will collagen supplements cause acne breakouts?

By collagen — On Jun 08, 2010

You're completely right but some products are naturally protected against stomach acids and they promote production in the body.

By anon88864 — On Jun 07, 2010

if you were to eat collagen instead of promoting its production in the body it'll most likely be broken down in the stomach to amino acids -- useful but with respect to collagen intake completely useless. this is why collagen production must be promoted as opposed to just eating collagen containing foods.

By collagen — On Apr 22, 2010

It looks like everything now is called collagen and this is not true because most of the products contain gelatine and it's a huge difference.

By anon71957 — On Mar 21, 2010

this is no lie, but i drink too much, eat unhealthy smoked a lot, and i look 10 years younger. i have stopped smoking drinking and eating unhealthy but am very depressed and i've noticed i have started to look older. for me i think it's the stress that is making me older looking.

By anon71400 — On Mar 18, 2010

collagen out there in vitamins, will most likely be animal product such as chicken cartilage. they are not going to state this on all collagen products but is a cartilage of an animal. E.g.: resvitale collagen enhance, for they state the capsule is vegetarian, but the collagen does not state animal, yet it is derived from chicken cartilage.

By anon68809 — On Mar 04, 2010

I am happy to hear that I am doing all the right things to control keratoconus, an eye condition, which involves the 200 layers of clear collagen that makes up my cornea. I have a small amount of gelatin each day plus all the leafy greens plus. At age 69 my distorted lens is crystal clear according to my eye doctor. Thanks for more info.

By anon57884 — On Dec 28, 2009

Wow, I grew up eating these vegetables ever since i could start chewing, and people keep mistaking me for me many years younger than what I am. I guess this is why my mother always told me to eat healthy. If it worked for me, then it will definitely work for you.

By anon48271 — On Oct 11, 2009

I have been a vegetarian for many years and my skin and overall health and energy levels have much improved since I became a vegetarian. People have actually asked me whether I had a face lift. The key to being a healthy vegetarian is to eat a well balanced vegetarian diet with lots of fresh, organic fruits, vegetables and nuts.

By anon44180 — On Sep 05, 2009

Not sure it's misleading if you read the article. Article states those foods are collagen producing, meaning promotes the production in your own body. Not that they contain collagen.

By anon41850 — On Aug 17, 2009

It's nice to know what I can eat to promote collagen production in my own body. Thanks.

By anon34305 — On Jun 20, 2009

Very misleading answer. Maybe from a member of PETA. Collagen is found only in animal products.

By mdt — On Apr 16, 2008

If you are referring to multiple vitamin and herbal supplements that contain collagen - yes, they can state whether the collagen source is vegetable or animal based. However, not all will, since there is not any firm regulation that requires that level of information. If you want to avoid any collagen products that contain animal products, look for supplements that specify a vegetable source, or at least are marked with a phrase like "no animal products". An alternative is to consume foods and take vitamins such as Vitamin C, that support healthy production of collagen in the body.

By anon11204 — On Apr 10, 2008

If a vitamin product contains collagen can they still state that it contains no animal products?

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum, a former teleconferencing industry professional, followed his passion for trivia, research, and writing...
Learn more
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