Let’s talk supplements and more specifically, let’s discuss supplements while pregnant. Supplements do just that… they supplement an already healthy lifestyle. No supplement is a “magic pill” or a “quick fix” rather they’re products designed to enhance the progress you’re making by eating healthy and working out. If you want a complete list of the supplements I take and why, read THIS post. Today, I wanted to answer a common questions I receive lately, which is: “are you still taking collagen while pregnant?” Short answer… yes. Long answer… continue reading.
WHY I STARTED TAKING COLLAGEN
In 2012, I first purchased a collagen product after my joints began acting up when I added running to my workout mix. I researched and found that collagen is the most abundant protein in the body. It is found in bones, tendons, ligaments, muscles and skin to name a few. Collagen plays an important structural role within the body.
The issue is that as we age, we produce less collagen. Further, our lifestyles can deplete collagen: from stress to excessive alcohol consumption and unhealthy diets, we may not be making as much collagen as we really need. We can notice this in wrinkled and saggy skin, joint pain, digestive issues and poor hair, skin and nail health.
Fortunately, we can eat collagen-rich foods and use collagen supplements to add this powerful protein into our diets.
Fast forward quite a few years after I had my son, Leo and I noticed increased joint pain during my workouts. I was chatting with my husband about it and he actually reminded me about the collagen product I tried in college for the same reason.
When I did my research, I found the Vital Proteins brand to be the standout for superior quality and the best selection of product offerings. THIS and THIS became my two favorite collagen supplements and so it began.
If you’re interested, I did a little “test” and took collagen consistently for 90 days, THIS is the blog post where I share all about the benefits I noticed.
3 REASONS WHY I STILL USE COLLAGEN WHILE PREGNANT
Fast forward a bit more and here I am 8 months pregnant with my second baby boy. Now, let’s make this very clear… I am not a doctor and NONE of what I say should be considered medical advice. I am simply sharing my personal experiences and opinions. I always recommend women check with their healthcare providers with anything and everything related to health decisions made while pregnant. Still, I wanted to share this post because I feel so empowered this pregnancy with the choices I am making for myself.
I was cleared to use this product while pregnant and in fact, I was told about the many benefits of collagen especially while pregnant and nursing. These are the top 3 reasons I decided to continue using collagen throughout my pregnancy.
1. INCREASED NUTRIENT DEMANDS
While pregnant, we have the privilege of growing a life inside of us. This comes with an increased demand for nutrients as we are responsible for growing and feeding our little human through what we consume. Funny thing is that our bodies take from us whatever the baby needs, depleting our nutrient stores to provide for baby. I saw collagen as beneficial for both baby and I because collagen is considered a “basic building block” in tissues and cells.
THIS collagen supplement contains 12 grams of protein per serving. I don’t have to tell you how important protein is as I am sure you already know. What is difficult as a pregnant women is getting enough protein. In the first trimester, I experienced major food aversions, especially to meat (my primary source of protein). This is when I first turned to collagen as an additional protein source. It’s so easy to add a scoop into smoothies, soups or my LG fruity collagen drink is: 1 cup ice, 1 cup water, beauty collagen and a bit of liquid stevia. I am able to more easily meet my daily protein intake goals with a little help from collagen supplements.
3. JOINT HEALTH
Where it all began… my joints. Growing a baby means we will inevitably gain weight and probably a whole lot of it in just 9 months. As the baby grows, more pressure is put on our body’s joints (and boy do I feel that right now!). Collagen supports the integrity of cartilage which is the rubbery tissue that pads our joints.
Science nerd over here… THIS study found that over the course of 24 weeks, 73 athletes who took 10 grams of collagen per day felt a significant decrease in joint pain as compared to the control group who did not take collagen. Since I was taking collagen prior to pregnancy, I wanted to keep up with it for overall joint health, especially knowing this was a struggle for me with my first pregnancy.
Overall, I find collagen very beneficial while pregnant and all of these benefits carry over to nursing as well, so I plan on continuing use while nursing. I encourage you to discuss this with your healthcare provider before making any decisions for yourself. Both my baby and I are healthy and thriving and I can’t wait to share more over the next few months. XO