Collagen is a protein found in our body. It acts as the glue that holds our bones and joints together. It’s mainly found in skin, hair, intestines, nails, and joints. Our body produces collagen, but collagen production declines over time. Since our bodies make less collagen overtime, researchers wondered: would taking collagen supplements help keep our skin looking youthful, hair and nails strong and support gut health?
Collagen peptide supplements can be for everyone. They are usually well tolerated in people with allergies or intolerances and are typically well digested. However, keep in mind that clinical studies about the role of collagen peptides are limited and more research is needed.
Are there food sources of collagen?
Collagen peptide supplements can be expensive. Bone broth has gotten a lot of attention lately as a food source of collagen. Bone broth is the derived from the parts of the animal that usually aren’t eaten - bones, skin, tendon, ligaments, marrow, and feet. Bone broth can be used in recipes that call for broth or stocks, or can be enjoyed alone. Think of drinking it like tea! It is generally well tolerated by people with allergies to soy and dairy. Bone broth provides us with collagen and minerals like calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. It could possibly boost the immune system and reduce inflammation, but more studies are needed on these claims. Other foods like egg whites, lean meats and fish are rich in collagen. Eating vitamin C containing foods, like citrus and dark leafy greens, could help promote collagen production in our bodies.
Things to consider before taking collagen peptides
It's important to keep in mind that collagen is not a complete protein source. It only contains 3 amino acids. So, you wouldn't want to use collagen peptide supplements as your only protein source in your diet. Focus on choosing lean proteins (chicken breast, eggs, low fat dairy and turkey, lean cuts of red meat) and plant-based protein (beans, nuts, tofu, etc.) in addition to collagen peptides.
How I use collagen peptides!
Since most collagen peptide supplements are tasteless and easily mixed into food and beverages, I like to add a scoop of collagen into my morning coffee. I sometimes add the supplement into baked goods, soups, and stews.
How do you use collagen supplements?