If you have been keeping up with our past posts, then you know we are a fan of collagen. While you may hear more about beef bones, you can also acquire collagen from poultry. Chicken collagen has its own profile of health-related goodies. This is something to keep in mind the next time you dine at El Pollo Loco.
What Is Chicken Collagen?
Collagen is derived from the bones, cartilage, and ligaments of most meats, including beef, poultry, and fish. Not all collagen are the same though. Collagens are classified by type according to their molecular makeup and amino acid profile.
This is where chicken collagen differs from the collagen found in bovine. Whereas the latter is rich in Type I (one) and Type III (three) collagen, chicken is high in Type II (two).
What’s the difference?
So, what is Type II collagen found in that chicken leg bone or wishbone? More importantly, what is it good for?
Type II Collagen Is A Joint Pain Reliever
Collagen Type II is found mainly in cartilage. It’s partly made up of the compounds glucosamine and chondroitin. Both of these substances have been extensively studied and documented for their health benefits for the body.
As you can probably infer from the title, chicken collagen is known for fighting joint pain. This is in large part due to the compounds glucosamine and chondroitin. In fact, you have probably seen various incarnations of these substances in supplement form as an arthritis pain reliever.
Past studies on these two compounds have admittedly been mixed. However, a 2015 meta-analysis reviewed 54 past studies in this area and concluded that glucosamine and chondroitin together are effective for alleviating joint pain in the knees.
The results suggest that collagen Type II may be an effective remedy for osteoarthritis patients or athletes with sport-induced joint injuries.
In another study examining four trials, researchers concluded that Type II collagen is effective for treating symptoms associated with rheumatoid arthritis. Subjects experienced fewer instances of joint tenderness and swollen joints compared to a placebo. Subjects also experienced little to no side effects.
How Does Chicken Collagen Relieve Joint Pain?
The science behind collagen’s role in joint relief is complex and scientists still aren’t completely sure of the mechanisms behind it. However, a study from the University of London may shed some light.
It’s known that joint pain and arthritis are caused by a combination of inflammation and an erosion of the bones and cartilage. A harmful protein known as matrix metalloproteinisases (MMPs) creates oxidative stress and degrades the enzymes that protect the joints against inflammation. Researchers believe that Type II collagen has some sort of positive effect on the antibodies that combat inflammation-inducing antigens.
In addition, collagen Type II is also rich in hyaluronic acid, which acts as a lubricant for the joints. Furthermore, chondroitin provides the much-needed building blocks to create new cartilage. It also absorbs fluid and shuttles it to the ligaments and connective tissues around the joints.
Chicken Collagen Treats the Common Cold
Did your mother feed you chicken soup when you caught the common cold or flu? In case you’re wondering, this isn’t merely an old wives’ tale. Chicken broth does indeed alleviate cold and flu-like symptoms.
How does it help? First, the fact that you’re drinking hot liquid causes the blood vessels to dilate. This increases blood flow, allowing your body to flush out toxins. It also helps the body flush out nasal mucus.
More importantly, Type II collagen contains N-acetyl cysteine. This amino acid acts as an antioxidant that strengthens the immune system. A 2000 study shows that chicken soup and broth alleviate cold and flus by inhibiting the movement of neutrophils. This is a form of white blood cells that defends against infections. It’s believed that restricted movement keeps neutrophils in the respiratory region where they can combat cold symptoms.
If you experience symptoms like a runny nose and watery eyes when consuming chicken soup, that’s a sign that the dish is having the desired effect.
If preparing broth to treat a cold, then we also suggest adding vegetables for a vitamin C kick. Here’s another closely guarded secret: foods high in zinc also combat colds. Studies show this mineral may shorten the duration of the ailment. Foods high in zinc to add to your chicken soup include oysters, squash, chickpeas, and spinach. Chicken itself also provides a decent source of zinc.
In addition, we also recommend supplementing with choline and inositol. These compounds are known to strengthen the nervous system. An increasing amount of scientific literature is finding direct interactions between the nervous and immune system.
Where Can You Get Type II Collagen?
Do you prefer making delicious meals from scratch? In this case, consider preparing your own homemade broth. Use a whole chicken or select parts with the bones intact. Add some water and any additional ingredients of your choice for added flavor. Place all the contents in a crockpot and let simmer for 24 to 48 hours.
If you find homemade broth too troublesome to prepare, then you can always opt for store-bought broth. Of course, there is always the option of collagen supplements. Be sure to read the label and choose a product listed as Type II. Some products are all-in-one formulas with Type I, II, and III in a single capsule.
Chicken Collagen Is Nature’s Remedy
Feeling achy joints? Feeling under the weather? We’re not professing that chicken collagen is an instant cure-all. However, we do stand behind our argument that chicken collagen is an especially potent remedy. The studies back up these claims, so we’re not peddling snake oil to make a quick buck.