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What Are the Best Sources of Collagen?

Collagen seems to be everywhere these days, but how do you know which collagen supplement to take? Even beyond supplements, there are real-food sources of collagen you should also consider. With all of the options out there, what are the best collagen sources out there?

A new collagen supplement seems to appear on shelves everyday as more people decide they want collagen in their lives. Here’s what you need to know.

Sourcing of Collagen

To date, there has not been a vegan source of collagen found, so you’ll be getting your collagen from an animal source. Whether you’re getting collagen from your meals or from a supplement, research is needed to find out where and how the animal is sourced. This extra information will help ensure both the quality of the product and the quality of life for the animal.

When looking at bovine-, pork- or poultry-sourced collagen, you’ll want to see the words pasture-raised or grass-fed. Pasture-based, grass-fed animals are provided abundant grazing land so they can roam freely and graze on native and cultivated pastures. This system is beneficial for the environment because it naturally fertilizes the soil and reduces the amount of grain produced as feed for the animals. Want to know what this kind of sourcing looks like for the animals? Check out this video below showing where Vital Proteins’ Collagen Peptides are sourced from.


What's the Deal With Marine Collagen?

If you are looking for a pescatarian option, you’ll want to make sure the fish used are wild-caught and sustainably harvested. This will make sure you aren’t supporting a brand that practices overfishing or environmentally damaging fish farming. Even better, find a brand that harvests its fish in accordance with the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch Program, like Vital Proteins’ Marine Collagen.

Collagen in Your Cooking

Collagen is abundant in the skin, connective tissues, bones and organ meat of animals we consume. An easy way to get more collagen in your meals is by leaving the skin on next time you cook pork, chicken or fish. You can also try your hand at making your own bone broth. Slowly cooking down chicken or beef bones with aromatics like onion, garlic or carrot is a great way to get a collagen-rich elixir with types I, II, and III collagen.

The Best Collagen Supplements

Another great option for adding collagen to your diet is to take it as a supplement. There are many options out there for supplements, including powders, capsules and drinks. Taking collagen regularly is the best way to get results, so figuring out the easiest way to integrate it into your daily routine can help narrow down which product to buy. Once you know what form will work best for you, use the tips discussed above to find the brand with the highest-quality sourcing.

Ready to get started with a clean-sourced collagen? These recipes feature Vital Proteins’ grass-fed and pasture raised bovine collagen, wild-caught marine collagen and organic bone broths.

Easy Chocolate Mousse Recipe
Lemon Cashew Bliss Balls
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars
Healthy Southwest Bowl