Should I take Collagen Supplements? 6 reasons why you should

UPDATED LAST ON

May 17, 2022

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Medically Reviewed ✓

By Dr. Cate, M.D., a board-certified Family Physician, biochemist trained at Cornell University, and New York Times Bestseller.

Dr. Cate's Takeaway

If you’ve been avoiding collagen because you think it is just the latest fad, you might be interested to know that all cultures around the world traditionally “supplemented” with collagen by eating meat on the bone — one of the four pillars of a Human Diet.

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Quick Summary

Collagen supplements continue to rise in popularity and everybody seems to be recommending them including friends, family members, trainers, coaches, and doctors. There are multiple reasons for taking collagen, and each is backed by either a scientific, practical, or convenience argument. The main reason to take collagen is that your body, which is ⅓ collagen, starts losing collagen around 25 years of age — a cold hard fact of the aging process. Other reasons include; most people are not eating enough collagen-rich foods, collagen translates well into a supplement, it offers bioactive amino acids to non meat-eaters, provides many health benefits with little effort, and collagen supplements don’t force major changes in your daily routine. Though the pros outweigh the cons, there are some reasons not to take collagen supplements which are less about safety and more about certain exceptions.

I’m going to channel my inner parents.

If all of your friends jumped off a cliff, would you jump too?

I mean, maybe? Depends on the cliff. Are we at Kahekili’s Leap in Hawaii at sunset? Well then, yes, I would jump Mom and Dad!

Collagen supplements popularity: everybody’s jumping in!

Peer pressure, we all experience it. And it doesn’t stop after plowing through your teenage years. The only difference now is the questions get more difficult to answer — especially when it comes to your health.

Girls at gym taking collagen in shaker bottles
Collagen is not just about beauty (hair/skin/nails), it helps with recovery and overall health.

In case you didn’t know, collagen supplements are a rapidly growing market. I’m sure you’re here because you know someone that currently takes collagen or has recommended collagen — such as a friend, family member, trainer, coach, or doctor — and they think collagen’s awesome benefits could help you too.

So, back to my inner parents.

If everybody took collagen, would you do it too?

Are you feeling pressure to take collagen? Are you hearing all the rage, but not quite sure if collagen would be beneficial, safe, and overall worth your time? If you’re stuck in this collagen dilemma and trying to decide if you should take collagen, we’re happy you’re here and we’re excited to help you answer that.

This is an incredibly important topic, and though we have many jokes here at CB Supplements, this is a serious one. We think everybody should be taking collagen, and nearly everyone, at any age, can take collagen. Collagen is so important that Dr. Cate, M.D. thinks it’s a missing food group in everybody’s nutrition.

Collagen is a Missing Food Group quote from Dr. Cate

6 reasons to take collagen supplements overview

If you’re looking for a little nudge to buy some collagen (of course, we’d be delighted if you chose our multi collagen supplements), the following reasons should compel you to at least give it a try.

With that said, we’re not the average supplement company because we recommend getting your nutrition from food first, then supplement. We’ll always encourage you to drink bone broth regularly before trying our collagen. So, though we’re attempting to make a case to buy supplements here, just know we’re truly interested in helping you with your overall health.

Here are 6 reasons to take collagen supplements:

  1. Your body is losing collagen
  2. Not eating enough collagen-rich foods
  3. Translates well to supplement
  4. Non-meat eaters get bioactive amino acids
  5. Many benefits, with little effort
  6. No change in daily routine

Let’s start with some science.

1. Your body is losing collagen every year

Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body — it’s found nearly everywhere! Yes, the beauty industry touts collagen’s benefits for your hair/skin/nails, but it’s also found in your connective tissue, bone, and cartilage.

Collagen makes up nearly 1/3 of your body’s protein composition.

Where is Collagen found in the body infographic
Collagen is found nearly everywhere in our bodies!

This collagen protein is the “glue” that holds us together, but it’s also the reason why we all feel the aging process. Collagen starts to decrease when we hit the age of 25-30. Our bodies simply decline its production.

If this is your first time hearing this cold hard fact, let me simply explain your two options moving forward in life:

  1. Do nothing. Ignore the science and how your body feels as you age. Of course, we don’t think you should ignore this.
  2. Eat more collagen (more on this in #2 below). The best way to get more collagen is to consume it!

Take collagen because you want to keep that “glue” throughout your body and decrease the speed of the aging process!

2. You’re not eating enough collagen-rich foods

Collagen through Whole Foods
Many of us don’t eat these 4 foods!

This may be the most compelling reason to take a collagen supplement.

When’s the last time you ate these foods loaded with collagen?

  1. Bone Broth
  2. Certain Organ Meats such as Tripe
  3. Meat on the Bone including Cartilage, Skin, Bone, Joint Material
  4. Eggs, more specifically, eggshell membrane

Maybe, never? Hey, no judgment here — I’ve always stated that I’d choose Taco Tuesday over eating tripe (cow’s second stomach). Speaking of the stomach, did yours just turn? Yea, mine does too every time I think about taking a bite of cooked tripe.

The only food I consume weekly that actually has collagen in it is bone broth. I love the Kettle & Fire brand. But, outside of bone broth, I eat very few foods that contain collagen and I need to supplement to get the proper amount of collagen protein every day.

3. Collagen translates well into a supplement

Supplements are supplements, right? Wrong.

“There are other things that companies put in supplements that don’t translate that well”, says Dr. Cate. But, collagen is different. It does translate well to a supplement because the nature of it is more of a durable product.

Most supplements, like whey protein, for example, require extensive processing. Collagen is different than whey because collagen’s manufacturing is less detrimental to the finished product. The collagen molecule, to put it plainly, is tougher. The integrity of the amino acids holds up to the battering of the manufacturing process.

Have faith that collagen supplements still come loaded with the good stuff even though it’s a powder in a plastic container.

4. Collagen is an excellent source of bioactive amino acids for those avoiding meat

Let’s address the elephant. Pun intended.

We are not saying there is vegan collagen — collagen comes from animals. What we are saying is that some people’s digestive systems have difficulty breaking down meat. And since collagen doesn’t have muscle meat (just animal bones, joints, cartilage, and skin), this provides an opportunity for people on plant diets to still embrace collagen’s uniqueness.

By taking a collagen peptide, you get the bioactive amino acids and collagen peptides that plants lack without the meat proteins that some people’s digestive systems have difficulty breaking down.Dr. Cate, M.D.

If you’ve ditched meat, don’t fear — you can still take collagen! Sorry vegans, we know you’re in a different boat. :/

5. Many health benefits with very little effort

Maybe this reason is why you’re reading this? Maybe that friend, family member, trainer, coach, or doctor suggested you need help with your gut, hair, skin, connective tissue (tendons, ligaments, joints), bones, and/or muscle health.

We’re not going to spend time in this article breaking down the science to back up collagen’s claim to fame — we’ve written extensively about collagen’s benefits here. There’s also plenty of anecdotal evidence, just go read a handful of our reviews.

It takes very little effort to incorporate collagen into your diet. Dropping a scoop of collagen into your coffee every morning takes very little effort. Now, that 1 scoop of collagen won’t magically turn around all your ailments the next day. Nor, will it the very next day. Collagen is not a silver bullet to your health. But, over time, you will begin to feel a difference — maybe even a life-changing difference — by investing 30 seconds a day and $36.52/month (with a monthly collagen subscription!)

You’ll find that the ROI of collagen is undeniable!

 

"3 years of benefits!"

"Been using this multi collagen for 3 years and continue to experience positive benefits!"

- Michael (Winter Park, FL)


Purity Tested


M.D. Approved


Delicious Flavors!

6. Collagen supplements don’t force you to change your daily routine

It’s just too easy to take a collagen supplement. We’ve found 16+ ways to take collagen peptides powder — and I’m sure there are more ways with a little creativity.

It’s also not only convenient and easy, but it’s fun and tasty! Our flavored collagen powder is fantastic straight-up in water. You can bake with collagen and make simple, ordinary foods explode with flavor. Or, you can simply use an unflavored and colorless multi collagen and not even know you’re consuming it.

We know numerous supplements can improve your health, like taking a probiotic — which by the way, a probiotic can be taken with collagen. But, collagen supplements pack a very big punch without changing your daily routine. They don’t need refrigerated, last a long time in your kitchen cabinet, are versatile, travel well, and cost-effective. We’d even say it adds some joy to your day-to-day!

Reasons NOT to take collagen supplements

Reasons not to take collagen supplements
No coffee & collagen for you?

Why shouldn’t you take collagen?

Now that we’ve explored why you should take collagen, let’s flip the scoop (see what I did there?) and share a few reasons why a collagen supplement might not be a good fit.

4 reasons why you shouldn’t take collagen

  1. Don’t take collagen if you’re eating lots of collagen-rich foods (as we explored in #2 above). Why supplement when you don’t need to supplement? Save your money.
  2. Don’t take collagen if you have life-threatening allergies to chicken and/or eggs. The ingredients of a multi collagen supplement will include both chicken and eggshell membrane. Learn more about taking collagen with an allergy to chicken and/or eggs.
  3. Don’t take collagen if you’re extremely wary of supplements. Listen, we dislike bad supplements too. It’s why we’re dedicated to the highest quality by manufacturing in GMP-certified facilities and boast the first and only NSF certified multi collagen on the market. We know there’s crap out there, so understand why someone would be spooked indefinitely.
  4. Don’t take collagen if pregnant and your doctor DOES NOT approve. Dr. Cate, M.D. believes collagen is safe during pregnancy. But, always check with your doctor first before starting a collagen supplement.
  5. You’re vegan. Enough said. 🙂

These are all solid reasons to not spend your time and money on collagen. Do we think the pros outweigh the cons? Of course. Are there special circumstances? Absolutely. But, generally speaking, for the average person, there are not many hurdles to collagen supplementation.

Final Thought

Four Pillars of a Human Diet - Dr. Cate

As you might have seen in Dr. Cate’s takeaway above, all cultures around the world have gotten their collagen from traditional ways — in particular, meat on the bone. See reason #2: not enough collagen-rich foods.

I know we’re talking about whether you should take a collagen supplement here, but just know that collagen has been around for ages and ages. We don’t eat like we used to — thus the popularity of collagen supplements.

More from Dr. Cate on the Four Pillars of a Human Diet.

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This Collagen College™ article created by:

Author

Eric Sharp CMO

Eric Sharp

Eric discovered collagen back in 2019 (thanks to Charlie) and been a believer since. He brings 20+ years of digital marketing experience to the CB Supplements team. As CMO, he's directly responsible for crafting the CB Supplements positioning, content, branding, and overall marketing direction.

Contributors

dr-cate-shanahan-avatar-square-color

Dr. Cate

Dr. Cate Shanahan is our Medical & Scientific Advisor. She is a Board-certified Family Physician, biochemist trained at Cornell University, and New York Times Bestseller.

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