Thursday, June 07, 2018

All you need to know about Collagen. A mini-review

Touted for its anti-aging, and skin, hair, nail, joint, and gut-supporting properties, collagen hydrolysate is one of the hottest supplements on the market right now.

But are the claims justified?

Let’s take a look at what the scientific evidence says…
Overall, reviews of the evidence show that collagen hydrolysate has anti-ageing, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, and joint-supporting properties.1, 2 When taken orally collagen hydrolysate is able to enter the body and accumulate in cartilage, where it increases the synthesis of connective tissue.3 Peptides from collagen that are beneficial to skin health have also been shown to be able to enter the bloodstream,4, 5 and effectively reach the skin as a result of oral collagen supplementation.6

Specific effects

A trial on 56 women aged 30-55 years, showed a significant improvement in skin hydration and elasticity in those taking just 2.5 g of collagen hydrolysate daily vs placebo.7 This effect has been shown to be dose-dependent, with results improved significantly with higher doses (5 g and 10 g).8

As little as 1200 mg per day of collagen significantly improves joint pain after 6-months.9

A 10 g dose of collagen, taken daily reduces pain, and improves joint mobility and function in people with arthritis,10, 11 and reduces joint pain and inflammation in athletes.12


So, collagen hydrolysate can help you to support skin and joint health, and reduce pain and inflammation, and encourage improved joint mobility.

If you like these articles, check out my Patreon page, where you can donate as little as $1 per month to help support nutrition research and receive exclusive member-only benefits. 

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1.            Song H, Li B. Beneficial effects of collagen hydrolysate: a review on recent developments. Biomed J Sci Technol Res. 2017:1-4.
2.            Moskowitz RW. Role of collagen hydrolysate in bone and joint disease. Seminars in Arthritis and Rheumatism. 2000;30(2):87-99.
3.            Bello AE, Oesser S. Collagen hydrolysate for the treatment of osteoarthritis and other joint disorders:a review of the literature. Current Medical Research and Opinion. 2006;22(11):2221-32.
4.            Shigemura Y, Kubomura D, Sato Y, Sato K. Dose-dependent changes in the levels of free and peptide forms of hydroxyproline in human plasma after collagen hydrolysate ingestion. Food Chemistry. 2014;159:328-32.
5.            Sugihara F, Inoue N, Kuwamori M, Taniguchi M. Quantification of hydroxyprolyl-glycine (Hyp-Gly) in human blood after ingestion of collagen hydrolysate. Journal of Bioscience and Bioengineering. 2012;113(2):202-3.
6.            Yazaki M, Ito Y, Yamada M, Goulas S, Teramoto S, Nakaya M-a, et al. Oral Ingestion of Collagen Hydrolysate Leads to the Transportation of Highly Concentrated Gly-Pro-Hyp and Its Hydrolyzed Form of Pro-Hyp into the Bloodstream and Skin. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 2017;65(11):2315-22.
7.            Sugihara F. Clinical Effects of Ingesting Collagen Hydrolysate on Facial Skin Properties―A Randomized, Placebo—controlled, Double—blind Trial―. 薬理と治療. 2015;43(1):67-70.
8.            Ohara H, Ito K, Iida H, Matsumoto H. Improvement in the moisture content of the stratum corneum following 4 weeks of collagen hydrolysate ingestion. Nippon Shokuhin Kagaku Kogaku Kaishi = Journal of the Japanese Society for Food Science and Technology. 2009;56(3):137-45.
9.            Bruyère O, Zegels B, Leonori L, Rabenda V, Janssen A, Bourges C, et al. Effect of collagen hydrolysate in articular pain: A 6-month randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled study. Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 2012;20(3):124-30.
10.         Zuckley L, Angelopoulou KM, Carpenter MR, McCarthy S, Meredith BA, Kline G, et al. Collagen hydrolysate improves joint function in adults with mild symptoms of osteoarthritis of the knee. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. 2004;36(5):S153-S4.
11.         Benito-Ruiz P, Camacho-Zambrano MM, Carrillo-Arcentales JN, Mestanza-Peralta MA, Vallejo-Flores CA, Vargas-López SV, et al. A randomized controlled trial on the efficacy and safety of a food ingredient, collagen hydrolysate, for improving joint comfort. International journal of food sciences and nutrition. 2009;60(sup2):99-113.
12.         Clark KL, Sebastianelli W, Flechsenhar KR, Aukermann DF, Meza F, Millard RL, et al. 24-Week study on the use of collagen hydrolysate as a dietary supplement in athletes with activity-related joint pain. Current Medical Research and Opinion. 2008;24(5):1485-96.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

It's time to stop pathologising being stressed and tired...

It's time to stop pathologising being stressed and tired. 

Adrenal fatigue. Everyone has least according to the 'experts'.

The problem is that, as if people aren't scared enough, they're now scared of adrenal fatigue, scared of 'stressing out' the adrenals, 'wearing them out', and basically doing anything that might be challenging to the body for fear that it will lead them to a life of bed-ridden disability.
But here's the won't.

You might have some type of HPTA axis problem. I don't's possible...but in reality, most people presenting with a bogus diagnosis of Adrenal Fatigue simply don't have anything structurally or even functionally wrong with their adrenal gland, hormones, or anything else. They are simply tired. They're fatigued, stressed, overtrained and overworked. They are living a full-on life in the modern world. They're undernourished, underslept, and overly distracted by rubbish media.

...and the great news is that all of these factors can be worked with. They are not a sentence but a starting point.

I had one client come into my clinic in tears. She had been diagnosed with Adrenal Fatigue by a complementary practitioner and told that she would likely have a recovery process lasting years.
However, when I looked at her diurnal cortisol pattern and all of her other blood markers, they were pretty much perfect. She's an athlete, studying at university, and holding down a job. She's tired.

We worked on a 'return to play' strategy of improved nutrition, sleep hygiene, mindfulness meditation, and an intelligent approach to strength and conditioning (starting with extremely low-volume strength work, increased consistently according to tolerance) and, hey presto! Three months later she was back to her best, sleeping well, eating well, and hitting PBs in the gym...and before you say it...No, this isn's an isolated example.

Check out my summary of the evidence for and against Adrenal Fatigue over at Patreon.

If you like these articles, check out my Patreon page, where you can donate as little as $1 per month to help support nutrition research and receive exclusive member-only benefits. 

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Sunday, April 08, 2018

4 Things You can do to Celebrate International Romani Day

April 8th is International Romani Day, a day to celebrate Romani culture and raise awareness of the issues facing Romani people.
The Romani are a misunderstood and much-maligned people. In fact, they are one of (if not) the most consistently and systematically oppressed minorities, having been the victims of persecution and genocide for their entire history as a distinct race.
To begin to reverse this underlying (and often unrecognised) racism towards Romani, how about taking a few steps this Romani Day to celebrate Romani culture!

Step 1. Learn a bit about the Roma
Romani people have been the victims of systemic and persistent oppression since they first ventured into Europe from Northern India around 1000 years ago.
They have been criminalised by virtue of race, forbidden in many places from owning land (one of the reasons many remained nomadic), persecuted, killed (e.g. 25-50% of Europe's Romani population were killed in the Holocaust), and were rounded up and sent to the Americas as slaves.
Nowadays Romani are the largest ethnic minority in Europe and bear some of the worst socio-economic stats in the Union. For example, while 17% of Europe’s population overall is considered at risk of poverty, 80% of Roma face the same risk. Romani still suffer systematic, societal, and individual persecution, especially in Europe, but also in other countries like the US.

Step 2. Stop using racist slurs to describe getting cheated
Stop saying you were ‘Gypped’!
The term Gypped (or gipped or jipped) comes from Gypsy, itself a pejorative term for the Romani people. Gypsy (Gyp, Gip, Gyppo etc.) comes from the mistaken belief that the dark-skinned nomadic (not always by choice...a topic for another time...) people originated in Egypt—hence Egyptian became 'Gyptian' and 'Gypsy'. Now that may seem quite innocent...but it's also ignorant and by extension how Europeans called Native Americans 'Indians'.
Nowadays people use the term Gypped to describe being cheated or swindled, due to the common (and mistaken) association of the Romani people with cheats, thieves, and liars. And THAT is the common use of the term 'Gypped'... So—if you're using the term, you are implicitly promoting the stereotype of Romani people as thieves and cheaters. And if that's not just plain racism...I don't know what is. 

Step 3. Celebrate, don’t appropriate!
It’s common to see the term ‘Gypsy’ used to describe a free-living or wandering lifestyle and while that is a secondary definition for the word, it is only so because the name was given to Romani and was, and still is, considered a derogatory term for them.  It was due to the counterculture movements of the 1960s and 1970s in which fantastical 'Gypsy' stereotypes were romanticized, and due to these stereotypes of Romani as free-spirited wanderers, new-agers and Instagrammers and others have appropriated the term Gypsy to denote practically anything that embodies any aspect of hippy, hipster, new-age or counter-culture.
Using the term ‘Gypsy’ just because you’re wearing a flowing dress or because you’re on holiday is actually pretty infantile, and yes, it is offensive to a lot of Romani people. Think about it this way, if you had a name applied to you for hundreds of year, that was considered a slur, and that completely distorted who you were, and then people began using that, and appropriating caricatured, cartoonish misrepresentations of your culture, dress, and customs, wouldn’t you be a little peeved about it?
A good metric to use is that if you wouldn’t feel comfortable saying that you are #InjunStyle or #NegroSoul (etc. etc. ad infinitum, ad nauseum) then you shouldn’t use #Gypsy either.

Stuff to know
Things that aren’t Romani: Crystals, tarot cards, dream-catchers, Jason Momoa 😉
And here’s some people you may not know are of Romani descent: Django Reinhardt (one of the greatest Jazz musicians of all time); Actors Charlie Chaplin, Fairuza Balik, Tracey Ullman, Michael Caine; and NZ TV personality Paul Henry!

Step 4. Call out other people being racist
Whether you think ‘Gypsy’ is racist or not, you must agree that saying you were ‘Gypped’ most definitely is. Think about it, you wouldn’t say you were N*&^^ered, or J***ed would you?
So, if you hear someone saying it, why not just gently bring their attention to it? Most people don’t realise that they are saying something so offensive and are happy to be made aware of it.

Step 5. Eat, drink, and be merry!
All cultures, all people, like to get together with friends and family and eat good food, have a drink (alcoholic or not) and have fun. So, have some fun today! I know I will. 😊
Opre Roma!