Very recently I found myself ordering from Amazon this product called Collagen Hydrolysate (Great Lakes Gelatin Collagen Hydrolysate – Pure Unflavored Protein Kosher Beef – 16 oz.). (not amazon affiliate link) I had bought it because I remember that the now retired basketball player Kobe Bryant said in an interview of what is his secret to being able to recover so quickly from some type of ligament or tendon injury was from drinking a lot of beef bone and marrow broth.
Since then, I have thought a lot about that claim. Sure, one realizes that after that claim, Kobe finally did announce his retired and leave the game of basketball in spectacular fashion. The sipping of bone soup will not prevent a person from getting older or more likely to suffer injuries as time goes on. Any claims that it can somehow be a cure for musculo-skeletal injury would be crazy to believe.
What I started to think about was the possibility that maybe the idea of consuming more of one specific type of protein would help maybe manage and lessen the erosion of cartilage, specifically the articular cartilage, in a person’s body.
If we remember, the extracellular matrix of cartilage tissue is made up of 4 main organic compounds, not including water. You have the collagen type II, the proteoglycan, and the GAGs (glyco-aminoglycans) as well as specific types of proteins like hyaluranon, aggrecan, and such. When you look at the composition of all of these organic compounds, there is one which really sticks out. I am talking about Collagen, whether it is Collagen Type I, Type II, Type III, or Type X. For our desires to become taller, we want to increase the level of Collagen Type II in our cartilage tissue.
However, when you go online to buy collagen, what you find is usually Collagen sold as a type of cosmetic, which you put on your face, to smooth out wrinkles. That type of collagen formulation does not use Type II, but Type I and Type III. The most effective way to use that type of collagen is to just apply it on your face, thus hydrating your skin layer. I once was approached in an Asian supermarket by a seller of this Japanese anti-aging cream who wanted me to try out their cosmetic product. I thought they would let me put some of the lotion/cream on my hand and then apply it on my face. No. They wanted me to swallow the collagen to obtain less wrinkles.
I knew back then about the types of collagen and she admitted that there is no Collagen Type II in that collagen drink, but just Collagen Type I and III. I called up the owner of the company which sold this product and they were not able back up their claims, except cite a few sources which did not admit that oral consumption of collagen helps remove wrinkles.
So I take this idea of beef bone marrow broth and combine it with the idea of swallowing a collagen drink for anti-wrinkles, and realized that it might be possible to find some type of oral supplement online like on Amazon which would claim to help a person’s joint health.
Maybe if you took the supplement of collagen, you can help treat and reduce the likelihood of muscoskeletal injury and damage as one gets older. Collagen, in its various types is found in skin, cartilage, and bone.
I personally have had this idea of buying this supplement for 8 months now but it was only recently that I actually bought the 16 oz one. After I bought it, I read the label and it said that it could definitely help with joint health, similar to those labels you find on Glucosamine/Chondroitin/MSM supplement bottles.
It got me curious to see if oral consumption of collagen powder (which is similar to those protein powders you see bodybuilders always taking) has any possible chance of stimulating osteoblast or chondroblast activity, maybe to increase the bone mineral density in bones, or maybe increase chondrocyte production levels.
What I found was very surprising. I refer to the studys below…
- “Hydrolyzed collagen intake increases bone mass of growing rats trained with running exercise“
- “Assessment of effectiveness of oral administration of collagen peptide on bone metabolism in growing and mature rats“
- “Bovine Collagen Peptides Compounds Promote the Proliferation and Differentiation of MC3T3-E1 Pre-Osteoblasts”
- “Porcine Skin Gelatin Hydrolysate Promotes Longitudinal Bone Growth in Adolescent Rats”
- “Collagen supplementation as a complementary therapy for the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis: a systematic review”
I am fully aware that I wrote a very similar post very early on in the website about the possibility of taking Collagen Type II supplements and height increase (http://www.naturalheightgrowth.com/2012/09/12/increase-height-and-grow-taller-using-collagen-ii/), and linked to Tyler’s old site Height Quest, since he has written almost the exact same idea citing the 4th study above, in a 2013 post (Grow taller with Collagen Hydrolysates).
This post is to get much more in depth into looking at the possibility, and seeing just how it would work.
And yes, we fully realize that the dosage needed to be taken by a human child who is 50 lbs in weight for collagen supplementation to have any real effect would be extremely large, as Tyler noted in his post.
Here is what recently has been claimed about it.
There are a few famous podcasts where professional medical researchers who are guests have come on to talk about the benefits. It was Dr. Rhonda Patrick who came onto the Joe Rogan Podcast who spoke about the benefits of collagen, and then she mentioned the compound again as an additional ingredient to be added into a smoothie. She would say that the collagen formulation has been proven to help with cartilage and osteoarthritis. The exact study that she cited was “Oral Administration of 14C Labeled Gelatin Hydrolysate Leads to an Accumulation of Radioactivity in Cartilage of Mice (C57/BL)”.
In that study, there was a mention of another 2 studies which showed that orally administered gelatin hydrolysate can be used in the treatment of osteoarthritis, which were the studies “Therapie der Osteoarthrose, Welche Wirkung haben Gelatinepraparate?” by Adam, M. in 1991 in the Journal Therapiewoche and the study “Dem Knorpel auf die Sprunge helfen” by Seeligmuller and Happel in 1993 in the same journal.
(And yes, I realize that those studies are not in English. I am guessing those studies are in German.)
Not only that, there were two other studies cited which showed that oral ingestion of Collagen Type II really helped against the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.
This particular study however revealed that the gelatin was absorbed into the cartilage, at least compared to the control, which was proline.
The big question for us then is “Will consuming collagen and this gelatin hydrolysate actually help me grow taller?”
There is very good evidence that because the cartilage layers are absorbing the collagen and gelatin, they are swelling up and staying plump, thus decreasing loss of height from spinal decompression as well as increase height.
The 4th study I cited shows that adolescent rats bone growth increases from collagen consumption. Obviously, it would be beneficial for a human who is still growing, as an adolescent. Even for a human with closed growth plates, the collagen would still be beneficial because the little bit of articular cartilage that is still left could be thickened and strengthened.
Combine the collagen consumption with daily stretching, and the temporary height gains one would see from only stretching would be slightly more permanent.
The honest truth is that there is no easy, simple chemical compound that you can buy cheap off of Amazon who can even have the possibility and small chance of increasing your height. Besides Glucosamine Sulphate, a Collagen derivative like the Collagen Hydrolysate, which may not contain Collagen Type II, but actually a mixture of amino acids and collagen type I and type III would still be helpful, would be the best, and smartest next choice. Of course, you don’t need to always buy the pills and supplements. I showed years ago in a post that instead of buying Glucosamine Sulphate pills, you just have to eat the shells on Shrimp in high amounts. Don’t de-shell the shrimp.
As for the collagen, I could suggest it to the younger people reading this, ask your parents to buy Oxtail and bones to boil to get the bone marrow and gelatin broth. There is an extremely high level of collagen and protein minerals inside.