Friday favorites blog post number one! I’m so excited to start this series because there are SO many things I want to share with you. Any products that I do share, I’ll be sure to give you a really good rundown of what it is, why I use it, how I use it, and where you can get it.
My first ‘favorite’ is COLLAGEN!
Have you tried using it before?
I started to incorporate it over two years ago and have been loving it ever since!
What is it?
Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies. It’s made of amino acids (like all proteins are), and it helps give structure to our hair, skin, nails, bones, ligaments, and tendons. The amino acids glycine, proline, hydroxyproline, and arginine are all essential for the connective tissue in our body, and these are present in much higher concentrations in collagen compared to other proteins. (These amino acids can also contribute to improved quality of sleep!)
Why do we need it?
As we age, collagen production slows down. Stress can also impact collagen production, but supplementing can improve these levels. Collagen makes up about 70% of the protein in our skin, so anti-aging properties and less wrinkles are often reported with use of the supplement. I think I noticed the effects most in my hair and nails; they grow like crazy! Maintaining adequate collagen levels can also improve joint and tendon health, as well as bone density. Another HUGE benefit that many people aren’t aware of is collagen’s gut-healing properties. If you have (or even if you don’t) any digestive issues, collagen could be a game-changer!
Taking collagen internally, such as in powder or capsule form, provides much greater bioavailability for us than an external application such as lotion or skin cream. This means that our body can digest and absorb it better, ultimately giving us maximum benefits.
How to use it?
Collagen peptides are colorless, odorless, and flavorless, and they dissolve in both hot and cold liquid! They do not change the flavor or texture whatsoever, and you’d never know there was anything mixed in unless you actually saw somebody pour the powder in.
My favorite way to use collagen is to mix a scoop into my morning coffee. It puts the collagen into my daily routine, so I’m consistently getting it’s benefits. Some other things you could mix it into are:
Dips (hummus, guacamole, etc.)
Baked goods (pancakes, waffles, banana bread, cookies, etc.)
Protein or energy balls
Collagen vs. Gelatin?
Collagen and gelatin are both made from animal collagen and have the same amino acid profile, but their structure and properties are different. They offer many of the same health benefits, but collagen has been treated further to break the bonds between amino acids, giving it the ability to dissolve and digest easily. Gelatin does not dissolve so easily; as the name suggests, it “gels” when prepared. It can be used to make things such as gummy candies or marshmallows.
If you’re a vegetarian, you can get collagen peptides that are sourced from fish. The benefits of grass-fed (bovine) collagen and marine (fish) collagen are essentially the same, however there is some evidence that marine collagen may have the greatest hair, skin, and nail benefits, while grass-fed collagen may be the best for overall body health and recovery. Either way, I believe you can experience all of the benefits of collagen from either source. Marine collagen tends to cost just a little bit more than grass-fed.
Where to get it?
Now that collagen has become fairly popular, there are a lot of different brands and even types of products that you can buy. I’ve tried a number of different brands, but I have two go-tos. All products are linked!
This is the brand I typically purchase. You can use my discount code on any of their products if you choose to purchase. (FINDINGBALANCE)
2. Vital Proteins
This was the very first collagen I ever tried. They offer a LOT of products for different ways that you can incorporate collagen. I’ll list them in the order I’d recommend them.
Collagen beauty greens (this is marine-based, vanilla coconut flavor)
Collagen shots (these are new! I haven’t tried them)
I hope this was helpful to you! Collagen is one of the only supplements that I truly believe everybody can benefit from using. If you’ve never tried taking it, I hope you consider it now.
If you do already use collagen, comment below your favorite ways to incorporate it! Feel free to contact me with ANY questions (HERE), and I’m always happy to help. Happy Friday!
*Note: some of the links in this post are affiliate links, and I could earn a small commission if you purchase any of the products.