The word peptide is reaching more and more people. Although the majority believes that it is the same with protein, the reality is a little bit different. What do we generally know about peptides? We know that they are great for the skin, because of their anti-aging properties, they are also used in bodybuilding for weight loss benefits and even in injuries for better and faster recovery. But what are they? What is the difference between peptides and proteins? What are all its benefits? What about side effects?
If you intend to resort to peptides, you should first read everything there is to read about them. Stay tuned! This article is meant to answer all your questions and even more.
The definition of peptides
The word peptide comes from the Greek language and has the meaning of digested. You will find out more about the connection with this word soon. So, they are strings of amino acids, made out of 2–50 amino acids. The importance of peptides in the human body is paramount. They are present in every cell and are decision-makers regarding the way the body functions. Just to name a few, they are known as energy sources and building blocks for enzymes, hormones and yes, proteins.
Wikipedia has a lot on this subject, starting with classes, chemical synthesis, terminology, and many others. If you want to dive in, here’s the useful link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peptide.
Peptides and proteins – why they are not the same thing
Let’s start with similarities: because they are both core parts of a cell, they are responsible for very important biological functions. Also, because they are chains of amino acids, they are very similar from a structural point of view.
Now, let’s see some differences between the two. Proteins contain more amino acids than peptides. This is why peptides are smaller and can be absorbed easier by the body. They can reach the bloodstream easily by penetrating the skin and intestines. And now you understand why I told you that you will understand why the original meaning of the word is digested – this represents their main attribute; they can be easily absorbed by the organism.
If you want to better understand the difference between the two, here’s a great article that covers a lot of aspects.
Where can we find peptides in plants and animals
They can be found in many animal or vegetal sources. When it comes to plants, you should consume a lot of beans and lentils, oats, hemp seeds, and wheat. Other recommended ingredients are eggs, milk, meat, fish and shellfish.
Some important benefits of peptides
They take care of your skin
The supplements that come to benefit skin health and have an anti-aging effect are known are collagen. Everyone nowadays knows collagen as the key to youth and beauty.
Statistically speaking, our skin is 70% collagen. Skin aging is said to start at the age of 30 and that is because the existing collagen starts to break down. Its production starts to decline earlier, at 21. When we reach the age of sixty, we are said to have lost 50% of the collagen we had at 21.
As we get older, the ugly wrinkles start to appear and that is because of the decrease in collagen. Apart from natural processes, there are some external influences we should pay close attention to. Exposure to UV rays, for example, is known to cause wrinkles, dryness and saggy skin. Collagen supplements are great not only for your skin, but they help deal with many other problems.
They are used in bodybuilding
If for the skin we had collagen supplements, for bodybuilding we have creatine peptides. Their purpose is to build both muscle mass and strength.
Creatine is known to be an important part of muscle tissue – between 1–10%. Muscles can function properly with its aid and support.
One interesting study was made regarding creatine supplements and bodybuilding. There were 2 groups of men who start working out. The first one was given the supplements and the other did not take any creatine. The men in the first group were recorded to have gained way more muscle and strength. If you are searching for a good informational source on peptides and bodybuilding, this one will answer all your questions.
They help with healing and regeneration
We already know that collagen is a very important component of the skin. Consequently, wound healing can be accelerated with the aid of collagen peptides. They improve the body’s ability to heal because, on one hand, they act as antioxidants and on the other, they reduce inflammation.
Side effects of peptides
Peptides are extremely beneficial for the human body and this is why there are little to no side effects. Of course, before using, you should talk to your doctor just to make sure everything is alright.
Oils and creams are said to cause mild side effects such as rashes, itching or skin sensitivity. If you want to find out more about their benefits and make sure there are just a few side effects of peptides, this article is a great source of information.
All in all, peptides are beneficial to the human body. They are not proteins, there is a slight difference between the two. They are very useful for the skin as they work in antiaging, they also help the wound healing process and are great for bodybuilding.