How Collagen Affects Keto
Up to 35% of the protein in your body is made of collagen. It helps bind your body together, strengthening muscles, bones, skin, hair, and nails. And of course it makes your skin look beautiful too. But collagen also affects keto!
When you start a ketogenic diet, your body rapidly undergoes several changes. It has to adapt to a fat-burning state, and in the process can become dehydrated and weak. But collagen can help make your life easier if you are doing keto.
Some ways that collagen affects keto include:
- Reducing hunger
- Enhancing recovery after a workout
- Supplying amino acids
- Guarding against dehydration
Hunger is a problem with any strict diet. Keto is no exception. From the moment you start cutting out the pizza, pasta, and oreos, your body fights back.
Success in dieting often boils down to managing hunger over time. This will be most difficult at the start, before your body gets used to its new state. But anything you can do to reduce hunger will wind up helping you diet.
Medical research suggests that collagen can reduce hunger cravings. As a form of protein, it helps to inhibit the production of ghrelin, the hunger hormone. One 2009 study showed that gelatin was even more effective than casein, the protein in milk. And gelatin is made from collagen from animal hooves, skin, and tendons.
Enhancing recovery after a workout
Lots of people get into keto because they are athletes or bodybuilders who want to reach certain fitness goals. Even if you are not, exercise is important for health, regardless of diet. It may be even more important if you pursue keto, because it puts extra demands on your body’s normal functioning.
After a strenuous workout, your body has done damage to its muscles. This
makes them grow, when your body repairs them afterwards. But without protein, you can’t build muscles.
Keto is already a fat and protein heavy diet. Your body will get more energy from protein on keto than on a normal diet. That means you need more protein to aid in muscle recovery.
Collagen is the most common protein in the human body. It holds together your muscles, skin, hair, nails, and bones. It is like the glue that keeps everything in place. That’s why collagen helps to recover properly after a workout.
Supplying amino acids
People tend to eat a lot of animal proteins on keto. This makes sense, because meat usually has a very high protein density.
Animal proteins, however, have imbalanced amino acid levels. They tend to have more methionine than glycine. If your body’s amino acid levels become imbalanced, this can lead to inflammation and heart disease.
Thankfully, collagen is chock full of glycine. Your body can make some on its own, but if your diet is making you deficient, collagen supplements could help.
Collagen also contains proline, which helps with protein synthesis and structure.
Guarding against dehydration
Collagen is famously used in skincare and beauty products to help with hydration. It keeps your skin looking beautiful, but this same property might also help you stay healthy.
Keto causes dehydration. Normally, your body uses carbohydrates to help keep water in the bloodstream (notice the hydrate part of carbohydrate?) When you enter ketosis, however, you have no more carbs left in your bloodstream. That water just gets flushed out of your system as urine or sweat.
This rapid loss of water is the real reason why people sometimes see overnight success with keto- it’s actually just water weight, not fat. But this means you rapidly become dehydrated, and lose electrolytes at the same time. This causes the dreaded “keto flu”, a set of symptoms like headaches and nausea.
To prevent against dehydration, it’s important to drink lots of water and to keep on top of your electrolyte levels. Some people take a supplement or just add more salt to their food. But collagen can also play a role here.
Collagen helps your body with hydration, keeping it in your skin and lubricating your joints. It can potentially help you if keto is causing dehydration.
Collagen affects keto in many ways. It helps to reduce hunger, improve recovery after workouts, supply amino acids, and guard against dehydration. Much more than a mere beauty supplement, collagen is the glue that binds your whole body together.
If you are interested in adding collagen to your keto diet, you have a few options. One is to eat collagen rich foods, like hooves and cartilage. This may not be a popular option for many people these days, but you could also take a collagen supplement or eat food with added collagen in it.
Keto Krisp offers a Butter & Salt bar, which contains collagen and is completely keto friendly. Flavored with stevia, not sugar, it won’t break ketosis. Give it a try if you want to see how collagen affects keto!