Peptides are a new anti-aging ingredient that’s causing major buzz in the skincare world. The small molecules are made up of amino acids, which form the building blocks of protein.
They’re also called biological polymers and oligomers.
In human biology, peptides are short chains of amino acids, and they’re often considered biologic messengers that carry information from one tissue to another. The function of a peptide can vary, depending on the specific amino acids in the chain and their sequence.
The human body naturally makes collagen and elastin to keep skin firm, smooth and flexible. But as you age, these proteins start to break down.
A lot of anti-aging products contain peptides to boost collagen production and improve skin health. They can reduce the appearance of fine lines and crow’s feet as well.
These types of peptides are derived from natural sources, such as milk, eggs and oats. But they can also be created in the lab.
They can also be produced in the body in the form of hormones and neuropeptides. Examples include oxytocin, which is produced in the brain and plays a role in social bonding and reproduction; LHRH (luteinizing hormone), which stimulates the pituitary gland to make and secrete the hormones luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone to enhance fertility; and calcitonin, which helps regulate calcium and phosphate levels in the blood.
In addition, peptides can also be used to treat conditions like arthritis and joint pain. They can help to rebuild muscles and tendons, increase the production of human growth hormones, and relieve inflammation.