Collagen supplements have become more popular in the recent years. In the past, when you are looking for collagen supplements, they are often not vegan as they are usually either bovine or marine collagen. Nowadays, there are options for vegan collagen supplements that don’t contain animal products.
What is collagen?
Collagen is a protein that is actually made naturally by your body. It is seen in many different parts of your body such as hair, bones, cartilage, nails, tendons and blood vessels. In particular, collagen plays a role in tissue repair and makes your skin more elastic.
After you reach the age of 25, your body naturally produces less collagen and it also becomes more fragmented and sparsely distributed. Usually, you will notice that your skin might wrinkle more, appear dry or sag a little. The collagen found in our bones also decrease as well, leading to reduced bone strength.
While collagen loss from age is inevitable, there are certain lifestyle factors that can increase the process. For example, smoking cigarettes, heavy drinking, diet heavy in sugar and prolonged exposure to the sun.
You can consume collagen through your dietary sources such as chicken skin, fish skin and collagen supplements. Most of the collagen rich foods come from animal parts such as bone, skin and ligaments. Therefore, those who are vegan might sometimes be lacking in collagen.
Vegan collagen is an alternative to regular collagen supplements that are sourced from animals. Some vegan collagen contain ingredients that boost your own collagen production in your body instead of providing you with the amino acids. While some other vegan collagen brands use genetically modified yeast and bacteria to help provide you collagen. However, this is still in the more early phase and is still not really out in the general market yet.
Genetically edited yeast and bacteria has their genetic code modified and have 4 types of human genes that code for collagen inserted into their structure. Once the genes are in place, the yeast or bacteria is able to produce human collagen. Pepsin is then added to help structure the collagen molecules to match with human collagen.
Currently, there are still scientists looking to bio-engineer it to provide more vegan collagen. As of now, there is still a need for more research to study the effectiveness of vegan collagen and whether it provides the same amount of benefits as animal sourced collagen supplements.
Benefits of vegan collagen
One of the biggest benefits of vegan collagen is that no animals have to be harmed to produce these collagen supplements. With vegan options, those who don’t eat animals are able to take collagen supplements to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles on their skin and produce more collagen to improve their bone health.
There have been some studies done on animal sourced collagen that suggest that collagen has the ability to improve your skin elasticity and appearance. The theory behind it is that ingesting collagen supplements can help boost your body’s collagen and collagen production and therefore increase your skin quality and see some anti-aging benefits.
However, what you should know is that whether there is any benefits to your skin from ingesting collagen supplements is still a topic that is up for debate. There is still not enough scientific studies to suggest conclusive evidence and many studies that find positive benefits were produced by collagen brands themselves.
But, there has been new evidence that suggest ingesting collagen supplements might be beneficial to your skin. They believe that the collagen are absorbed and circulated by your bloodstream to your skin. Although, there is still more research to be done. Others also say that skincare with collagen can only penetrate the surface layer of your skin and therefore ingesting collagen might absorb better and help the deeper levels of your skin.
Studies have shown that collagen supplements are safe for you to consume and does not seem to have any major side effects. As always, you should always contact your doctor or a nutritionist if you are unsure. As there does not seem to be any harm, I have started taking collagen as it is relatively cheap and there doesn’t seem to be any major drawbacks into trying it out. I have noticed that it does seem to help contribute with my skincare routine to achieve a nice dewy skin.
How to choose vegan collagen
When you are considering to buy vegan collagen, you should always do your research on the company and their products. Technically, vegan collagen is still a new thing, therefore you should always be wary of any company that makes claims that appear to be too good to be true. Make sure you look up the active ingredients that are used and do some comparisons between different brands.
If you are unsure, you should always contact your doctor about any supplements that you plan to take. A consultation to assess your needs and whether it can help is a good idea. If you have skin conditions, you should also contact a dermatologist to get more clarification about the supplements and their effects on your skin.
Feel free to ask me any questions you have, I’m always open to providing more information.
This vegan collagen is probably one of the most popular one out there. It is certified vegan, organic and non-GMO. It is sourced from 30 different types of organic whole foods to help support your body’s own collagen production. This product is technically not collagen, but a supplement full of co-nutrients that helps your body produce more collagen.
One of their main ingredients is silica. It is sourced from organic bamboo extract and the nutrient silica is important for your body to produce collagen and is also considered as an anti-inflammatory. Silica helps strengthen your body’s connective tissues and it sits inside collagen and acts like a glue that provides support and flexibility to your connective tissues. The glue like function helps keep your skin healthy.
Polyphenols are a group of antioxidants that help protect your skin from the damaging UV rays you receive from the sun. When you eat foods that are high in polyphenol, you can protect your cells from free radical damage. In addition, it also can help with reversing signs of aging such as sun spots, lines and wrinkles.
Biotin is a B vitamin that our body cannot produce and therefore must be ingested from a source. It helps enzymes metabolise glucose, fatty acids and amino acids. Those who are low in biotin often have issues such as skin infections, brittle nails and hair loss. Taking biotin can help improve the health of your skin.
This is a liquid collagen supplement that includes a vegan bio-fermented probiotic. They feature a bacteria called lactobacillus rhamnosus in their probiotic strain. It is then mixed with ingredients such as papaya, grapeseed extracts, pomegranate peel extract, gotu kola, goji, açai and Yaqui berries. All of these help support collagen production.
Although this features a unique probiotic strain, this collagen supplement still does not have collagen in it, and is just a collagen booster. It comes is a sweet drink that kind of reminds you of cordials that you mix with water. It tastes pretty well and has a nice raspberry flavour. It’s a bit on the fancier end and therefore I would only recommend this if you have money to splurge.
This one is another collagen boosting supplement in the form of a gummy. It is mostly just vitamin A, C, amla fruit and L-lysine to help promote your collagen supplement. The vitamin A and C can help stimulate collagen synthesis and promote your skin health. While the amino acid lysine binds the vitamins together to help promote collagen product. Amla fruit is also known as Indian gooseberries and is known to help improve skin conditions by improving your elasticity and thickness.
I’m usually not a huge fan of anything that is watermelon flavoured (love the fruit though!) but this one was alright. The watermelon taste is not too overpowering, it is more of a subtle and a little natural tasting with no aftertaste. This is a good healthy collagen that does not have any animal products, non-GMO and does not contain any soy, dairy, gluten or gelatin.
I absolutely love Moon Juice and was pretty hyped when this came out. This collagen supplement comes in the form of a powder that can be used to replace creamer or milk. I usually use this with my matcha to make a nice matcha latte in the morning.
It uses minimal ingredients and features silver ear mushroom, tocos and hyaluronic acid. It is all natural, non-GMO and has no soy, gum, gluten and fillers. The ingredients all work to help hydrate and nourish your skin while helping to promote your skin’s collagen levels.
Silver ear mushroom is an edible mushroom that acts similar to hyaluronic acid. It also happens to be very high in vitamin D, this helps with cell growth, wound healing and maintaining your skin’s barrier function. In addition, it has antioxidants that help maintain the health of your skin. Tocos is a fat soluble relative of vitamin E. It is hydrating to your skin and connective tissue and is a power antioxidant to help fight off the free radicals.
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