Let's talk about Collagen!

Whats the deal with collagen? Beloved by gym junkies and the beauty-obsessed, but what about the rest of us? Read on to find out why EVERYBODY needs more of this essential nutrient.

If we haven't answered your questions below, please check out more of our general FAQs here.

What is collagen?

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body.

Collagen comes from the Greek word 'kolla', meaning glue - and that is what collagen is, the glue that holds the structure of your whole body together, from your tendons, joints, skin, hair, nails, down to the cells that make up all your organs.

Our bodies make collagen when we are young, but natural production slows down as we age so we must consume it as food.

What food? See the next question to find out!

What are good food sources of collagen?

What foods contain plenty of collagen?

The tough, unappetising bits of animals that we no longer include in our modern diet - like tripe, fatty, gristly cheap cuts of meat, bones, skin, feet and all the bits and pieces your grandmother would have know what to do with.

Humans have known the benefits of boiling down parts of animals to make rich, gelatinous broths since the dawn of civilisation, and only now has modern life meant that we no longer have the time or inclination to prepare this nourishing superfood.

What are collagen peptides/hydrolyzed collagen?

Collagen peptides are made from gently extracting collagen from animals such as cows, chickens, fish etc.

The best collagen supplements begin with a whole-food product from an animal that has been raised in its natural environment. We then employ gentle heat to break down (hydrolyze) the long, tough collagen molecules into shorter, easily digested chains called peptides. Ref

Collagen peptides are an easily absorbed (highly bioavailable) form of collagen, a supplement that can provide a host of benefits from better sleep, a happier gut and glowing skin.

All of Skip's collagen blends use collagen peptides (hydrolyzed collagen) for bio-availability and easy absorption into your body.

Why is Collagen a 'missing essential food'?

Humans for hundreds of thousands of years ate every last bit of an animal. It’s fair to say the evolutionary environment of the ancient meat-eating human was rich in collagen. And as much as the world has changed, our bodies simply haven't.

There is strong evidence showing:

  • Humans are meant to eat the meat and the bones, skin, and sinew;
  • We function best when we eat the amino acids in muscle meat and the amino acids in collagenous materials;
  • The more muscle meat we eat, the more collagen we require;
  • We live longer, healthier, and look and move better with plenty of collagen in our diets.

Even our grandparents utilized every last collagenous bit to make soups, stocks, and stews as standard practice. 

Quality meat is incredibly healthy, but eating only lean cuts devoid of collagen or other animal parts has been shown to be unhealthy:

  • Animal studies confirm that the more methionine (an amino acid contained in lean muscle meat) an animal eats, the shorter their lifespan — unless they balance it out with glycine from collagen (which is the single greatest source of glycine). Ref
  • Higher levels of glycine are linked to better health, and lower levels are linked to worse health across a broad range of conditions.
What are the main benefits of collagen?

Some of the benefits of taking collagen can include (but aren’t limited to):

  • More hydrated, smoother, plumper skin
  • Stronger and longer nails and hair
  • Improved Sleep
  • Accelerated Healing
  • Joint and Connective Tissue Health
  • Bone Health
  • Heart Health
  • Athletic performance
  • Balances meat consumption
  • Uses more of the whole animal, making meat more sustainable

Have any studies been down to prove all this? Read on to the next question to find out.

Have studies been done to prove the benefits of collagen?

Here are some studies which have been done showing the effects of collagen - references are cited in situ.

Studies showing beneficial effect of collagen on skin:

Your skin is made of collagen. To maintain its elasticity and stave off wrinkling, we must provide the foundational substrates of collagen.

  • 2.5 grams of collagen per day for 8 weeks reduced eye wrinkling by 20% and increased skin elastin (a skin protein that does exactly what it sounds like—provides elasticity) by 18%, an effect that persisted for one month following cessation of the supplement. Ref
  • 1 gram of a chicken sternum cartilage collagen extract per day reduced wrinkling by 13% and skin dryness by 76% while increasing collagen deposition by over 6%. Ref
  • 6 months of collagen supplementation even reduced the appearance of cellulite. Ref
  • This study shows that after 4 days we see a 40% increase in growth in skin cells.

Studies showing beneficial effect of collagen on joints:

Just like skin, your joints are made of collagen. Taking collagen can improve your joints — especially if there’s a problem or pain.

  • In athletes complaining about joint pain, taking collagen hydrolysate supplements reduced pain Ref
  • In osteoarthritis patients, a collagen supplement reduced pain scores and improved walking ability Ref

Studies showing beneficial effect of collagen on sleep:

  • It enhances production of serotonin, a necessary precursor for the sleep hormone melatonin. Ref
  • It drops body temperature when taken at night, which improves sleep quality. Ref
  • It improves subjective sleep quality; people feel like they get a better night’s sleep after taking 3 grams of glycine before bed.
  • More importantly, it improves objective sleep quality; people perform better the next day after taking 3 grams of glycine the night before. Ref

(These studies used isolated glycine, but Mark prefers collagen).

Studies showing beneficial effect of collagen on healing:

Most traumatic injuries involve damage to the connective tissue, skin, or fascia. 

Collagen supplementation speeds up healing time in ulcer patients and topical collagen can improve wound healing when added to dressings

Taking extra collagen can therefore speed up the healing time from any wound or trauma that requires the laying down of new collagen. Ref Ref

How much collagen should I take per day?

12 grams of collagen (about 2 of Skip’s scoops or sachets) — will give most of us the glycine we need. Some people will need a bit more, some a bit less, depending on age and how many of these amino acids are already present in your diet, so also consider your meat intake.

In studies, it seems the main complaint associated with taking too much collagen is having an upset stomach or other gastrointestinal issues. Ref

As always, whenever you’re taking a new supplement, it’s best to consult with a physician before incorporating it into your diet.

How long does it take for collagen supplements to work?

For cosmetic purposes, this study shows you might see the benefits of collagen in about 6-8 weeks. Ref

(Su and I saw significant results in our skin and joint pain within 4 weeks).

If you’re using collagen for other benefits, such as extra support for sleep, or accelerating healing from an injury, you might feel the effects of collagen (and glycine) working much sooner or even immediately.

Are collagen supplements safe?

Collagen supplements are widely known to be safe, but again, whenever you’re taking a new supplement, it’s best to consult with a physician before incorporating it into your diet. It’s also important to consider the quality of the product for the best results, as well. (Thankfully, Skip's collagen is from super premium sources).

All Skip Nutrition products undergo rigorous testing for quality and purity to guarantee the products we sell are certified and 100% safe for human consumption.

Every batch is tested for microbiology, stability, nutrition profile, toxins and heavy metals such as mercury, lead and arsenic.

Our products meet all required quality and safety standards set by the top regulatory agencies in each region.

Our collagen blends are manufactured in the USA in a FDA approved, GMP facility.

Where does Skip Nutrition Co's collagen come from?

Our collagen products are all made and packed in the USA, from a combination of local and imported ingredients.

Our Bovine Collagen comes from New Zealand grass fed cows.

Our Marine Collagen comes from wild caught Pacific snapper.

Our Multi Collagen comes from grass fed cows, free range chickens and eggs, and wild caught pacific snapper.

Our free range chicken and eggs collagen come from USA.

Is collagen vegan/vegetarian?

Collagen is found only in animal or marine sources, so it cannot be vegetarian or vegan.

However, plant-based eaters likely need less dietary collagen than the average omnivore, due to the lack of methionine in the diet.

'Vegan collagen' supplements don't contain any actual collagen, but they do contain ingredients from plants which may help your own body produce more collagen!

Is collagen suitable for kids?

Yes - you can add our Gut Heath Boost, Glow Boost Marine Collagen and Vitality Boost to kid's smoothies or juices to boost the nutrition content.

If your kids are age between 4 and 13, we recommend a half scoop serving per day. For 14 and up, a whole scoop is good.

We don't recommend you use any of our collagen blends on kids under 4.

What is the source of information on this page?

All of this information comes from a combination of Mark Sisson and Dr Cate Shanahan*, both of whom are well known for their research in human health.

Mark is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and New York Times bestselling author. Mark has spent three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness.

Dr Cate is a board-certified Family Physician with over 20 years of clinical experience and a NY Times bestselling author. Her expertise is fixing the underlying problems that cause metabolic damage and inflammation, leading to autoimmunity, weight gain, diabetes, cancer and accelerated aging processes.

* We are not affiliated with nor directly endorsed by Mark Sisson or Dr Cate Shanahan - we just love their pursuit of evidence based health.

Further Reading

We hope we have answered a lot of your questions here!

We have more general FAQs about products, orders, shipping. returns etc here >

Or you can contact us through our socials or at hello@skipnutrition.co

Here is some more reading about collagen from reputable sources around the web:

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