Collagen peptides help improve your bone, skin, gut and joint health. But how much collagen per day should you consume?
There are no official guidelines on how much collagen you should take per day. However, new research shows that you should consume at least 10 grams of collagen per day in order to see results . Most scientists and holistic nutritionists recommend taking 10-30 grams of collagen each day.
Below, we explain how much collagen you need, why you need it and how to incorporate collagen supplements into your daily routine. Plus, we offer a number of delicious ancestrally inspired recipes to get more collagen into your diet.
Why Should I Start Taking Collagen?
Before explaining why you should take collagen, allow us to first explain what collagen is. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. Commonly referred to as the ‘glue’ that holds you together, collagen is found in all your connective tissues — including your bones, cartilage, ligaments and joints.
Unfortunately, your body’s collagen production naturally declines as you age, starting as early as your twenties. By your forties, you begin to lose 1% of your body's collagen per year . By the time you reach your 60s or 70s, lost collagen negatively impacts your hair, skin and joint health. A decrease in collagen causes brittle hair and nails, wrinkly skin, stiff joints, brittle bones and a damaged gut lining.
Fortunately, you can make up for lost collagen by taking collagen supplements. With collagen supplements, you increase collagen synthesis in the body, leading to a number of health benefits.
Studies have shown collagen supplements can increase skin elasticity and hydration, reduce joint pain, increase bone density, repair your gut lining (thereby decreasing symptoms of leaky gut syndrome) and even increase fat-free muscle mass . Plus, collagen is filled with 18 different amino acids and contains over 11 grams of protein in a 13-gram serving.
What Are the Best Collagen Supplements?
There are a number of different collagen products available, each promising different anti-aging benefits. Collagen supplements come in the form of powders, creams and even gummies — but you should do your research before selecting a product off store shelves or online.
When searching for a collagen supplement, look for one with these qualities:
- Hydrolysed collagen: Hydrolysed collagen is made through a process called hydrolysis, which is a breakdown of animal material such as skin, cartilage or scales into collagen, performed in water. Hydrolysed collagen is easily broken down and digested in the body and dissolved into amino acids .
- Contains one ingredient: Always search for products that contain one ingredient — collagen. Be wary of purchasing collagen capsules or sticks, which can contain fillers, additives and other bulking agents.
- Contains type I collagen: There are 16 different types of collagen available. Type I collagen accounts for roughly 90% of the collagen found in the human body, making it the most common type of collagen. Type I collagen is filled with essential amino acids like glycine and proline, and gives structure to bones, tendons, teeth and ligaments . You can find type 1 collagen in both bovine and marine collagen.
- Batch tested: Collagen supplements should go through laboratory testing to ensure each batch is of the highest quality. Lab testing ensures supplements are free of toxins, pesticides and heavy metals.
- Non-GMO: Collagen supplements should be free of GMOs. For example, if you’re purchasing bovine collagen (collagen from cattle), cows should be grass fed and free from GMO feeds.
- Sourced from high-quality animals: Collagen supplements should be extracted from high-quality animal sources, such as grass-fed cattle (bovine collagen) and wild-caught fish (marine collagen).
- Gluten-free and dairy-free: Collagen supplements should be free from allergens, such as gluten, grains and dairy.
How to Get More Collagen in Your Diet
- Add it to your morning coffee: Add a serving of collagen peptides to your morning espresso or cup of coffee to get your daily dose. Otherwise, you can enjoy this matcha tea latte or bulletproof coffee with collagen.
- Blend it into smoothies: You can easily blend collagen peptides with spices, coconut milk and low-sugar fruits (like berries) to make a delicious morning smoothie. Try it in this carrot, coconut and collagen protein powder smoothie or this avocado and blueberry protein smoothie to get enough collagen in your day.
- Mix it into salad dressings: You can add a serving of collagen to any sauce or dressing. Enjoy it in this creamy collagen dressing with a spinach, cucumber and strawberry salad.
- Add it to delicious treats: You can increase your body's collagen content by adding a dose of collagen to a number of desserts. Enjoy this triple berry chia MCT oil and collagen pudding recipe or these chocolate coconut MCT oil fat bombs to get 13 grams of collagen in your day.
- Include it in any beverage: Collagen can be added to any cold beverage. Add collagen powder to this sugar-free citrus collagen spritzer to increase your collagen intake.
- Mix it into a number of entrees: You can add collagen peptides to a variety of main dishes. In this recipe for crackling chicken thighs, you combine collagen with seasonings and pork rinds to make a crispy coating.
- Drink bone broth: Bone broth is made by simmering animal bones in water and spices for a long period of time, thereby offering similar benefits as collagen supplementation. Follow this bone broth recipe (with added collagen) to make bone broth at home.
Can You Take Too Much Collagen?
While there's some disagreement on the right amount of collagen to consume per day, most researchers agree that between 10-30 grams is sufficient. But can you consume too much collagen?
If you choose a high-quality form of collagen, there are little-to-no side effects reported. In very rare instances, taking too much collagen can result in heartburn or digestive distress. When starting collagen, start small (1 tsp) and gradually build up to your desired amount. We normally recommend 2 tbsps as being the ideal dosage.
How Much Collagen Per Day Should You Take?
You should always speak to a holistic nutritionist or other healthcare professional before taking supplements, if you are unsure. Your unique collagen needs will depend on your age, body composition and lifestyle.
One serving of Hunter & Gather collagen peptides includes 10 grams of marine and 13 grams of bovine collagen. Take one serving per day to improve your skin health, decrease fine lines and wrinkles, strengthen your joints and improve your gut health.
Take Collagen to Benefit Your Gut, Skin and Joint Health
Collagen is the most abundant protein found in the human body, strengthening all your connective tissues. Unfortunately, collagen production naturally declines as you age.
To make up for collagen lost due to aging, you can take collagen supplements. When choosing a collagen supplement, choose hydrolysed collagen peptides with only one ingredient. In addition, you should choose a product that’s GMO-free, free of additives or bulking agents, and extracted from high-quality sources.
To help replace collagen lost due to aging, mix one serving of collagen peptides into your morning beverage. Hunter & Gather Bovine Collagen is sourced from grass-fed cattle, while the Marine Collagen is made from wild-caught fish. Both options provide 10-13 grams of collagen per serving — an amount high enough to provide a number of health benefits for your hair, skin, nails, joints and digestive tract.
All information provided on our website and within our articles is simply information, opinion, anecdotal thoughts and experiences to provide you with the tools to thrive.
It is not intended to treat or diagnose symptoms and is definitely not intended to be misconstrued for medical advice. We always advise you seek the advice of a trained professional when implementing any changes to your lifestyle and dietary habits.
We do however recommend seeking the services of a trained professional who questions the conventional wisdom to enable you to become the best version of yourself.