This week we are sharing the spotlight with a guest contributor who understands and celebrates the nuances of women over 50. Here’s an article by our go-to Yoga guru, Maddy Rothschild, which we’re sure you’ll find absorbing…
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body, accounting for about one-third of its protein composition and providing structural support to many body tissues. Whilst many of us think of collagen in terms of our skin, it’s one of the major building blocks of bones, muscles, tendons and ligaments. It’s also found in many other body parts, including blood vessels, the cornea and teeth. You can think of it as the glue that holds us together. In fact, the word collagen comes from the Greek word “kola”,, which means glue.
As we age, our bodies produce less collagen, and by the age of 50, we are producing 50% less collagen than we do in our 20s. There is a sharp decrease in collagen production after menopause. At the same time, the enzymes that destroy collagen start to increase as we age. Lifestyle choices such as exposure to sunshine, poor diet, particularly a diet high in sugars, smoking all contribute to a breakdown of collagen.
Studies show that ingesting collagen has a positive influence on creating more collagen in the body. Beware of high priced facial creams that promise to influence collagen in the skin. Collagen molecules are too large to be absorbed through the skin.
I take a collagen product from Synergy, Collagen Plus, which combines collagen with vitamin C, hyaluronic acid and zinc. It is total body collagen. The four ingredients work together synergistically; most importantly, vitamin C. Vitamin C is essential to help the body create and maintain collagen protein. This process will not happen without it. Hyaluronic acid, often thought of as the ‘molecular of youth’, binds to water molecules to help keep the skin hydrated and supple, providing lubrication to the tissues. Zinc is an important trace mineral for the immune system. In this formula, zinc helps with collagen production by inhibiting the enzymes that can break collagen down and increase as we age.
As a yoga teacher, I need to look after my body’s structure from the inside out. Taking Collagen Plus regularly enables me to support the makeup of my muscles, tendons and ligaments. And, as we all like to look good, I’m supporting the outer layers as well.
For a little extra facial toning, I have put together some facial yoga exercises to exercise some of the 43 muscles in our faces. Like the muscles in our bodies, if we don’t use them, they will become weak and deteriorate. Join me in this 5-minute facial yoga routine, which is guaranteed to make you smile.