If you follow me on social media, you most likely see me post every now and then about my favorite collagen and gelatin supplements sold by Vital Proteins.
I get asked questions about these products quite frequently and social media just isn’t the space to answer ALL the questions, so I finally am getting around to making a post that will explain a little bit more about what both of these products are exactly, why I personally have chosen to add it in to my and my families regular nutrition plan (including my toddler), and how I like to use it on a regular basis.
If after reading this post you decide you would like to try either of these products or try any of Vital Proteins other wonderful products, I would GREATLY appreciate you ordering through my affiliate links provided on this page. I do get a small commission for every purchase made through my personal links which supports my efforts of sharing this FREE information with you all on this blog. And for the record, I only share with you all products that I personally use myself and 100% believe in and think you may benefit from as well. Thanks in advance!!
What is Collagen?
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body. It ensures the cohesion, elasticity and regeneration of all of our connective tissues including our skin, tendons, ligaments, cartilage and even our bones. It also helps provide structure to our hair and nails.
To have a better idea of the role collagen plays in the various different parts of the body I’ve broken it down for you below:
- Skin: Approximately 70% collagen
- Ligaments: Approximately 70% collagen
- Tendons: Approximately 85% collagen
- Joint Cartilage: Approximately 70% collagen
- Bones: Approximately 90% collagen
As we age, we naturally start to produce less and less collagen. This process of producing less collagen starts around the age of 30 and will accelerate as we head into our 40’s. As collagen levels naturally begin to decline, unless we choose to supplement or increase the amount of foods in our diet that contain high amounts of collagen, like homemade bone broth, signs of aging will inevitably begin to set in. Certain signs of declining collagen levels within the body may include dehydrated/thinner skin, wrinkles, brittle nails, fragile and more breakable bones, joint discomfort and hair loss. Supplementing or increasing your intake of collagen through other whole food options thus may help support your body’s overall levels and may slow the signs of aging.
Collagen specifically contains 18 amino acids, including 8 out of 9 essential amino acids. It is characterized by the predominance of the amino acids glycine proline and hydroxyproline. The amount of glycine and proline in collagen is specifically 10-20% higher than in any other proteins, both of which are important for a number of things including protecting/healing your gut and stomach lining, preventing ulcers and GERD, supporting digestion, and promoting a better night’s sleep.
How Do I Get More Collagen in My Diet?
The most natural way to get more collagen in your diet would be to make your own home made bone broth from responsibly sourced bones, like these. When bones from healthy and responsibly raised animals are slow cooked in filtered water, the collagen from these bones is released into the broth and is freed up for consumption. Below is a great recipes to follow to make your own collagen rich broth.
You could use homemade broth as the base to any of your favorite homemade soups or just drink it straight out of the mug in replace of your morning coffee or tea.
If making your own broth doesn’t sound very practical or like something you will realistically do, then supplementing with a high quality collagen protein would be the next best option in my opinion. My personal favorite collagen supplement is Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides. It is very high quality and the collagen comes from the bones of grass-fed, pasture raised cows. Don’t worry though, while most of their products are sourced from grass-fed cows, if you are a vegetarian they did not forget about you!! They also have a Marine Collagen Protein powder that is made from the bones of wild-caught snapper fish.
Most of their new flavored beauty waters also include marine collagen. I have not personally tried these but they look delicious if you want to spice up your water game!!! Flavors include lavender lemon, melon mint, cucumber aloe. and strawberry lemon. Strawberry lemon flavor was the only one I did not see was sourced from Marine Collagen.
What’s the Difference Between Collagen Peptides and Gelatin?
I mentioned earlier that my other favorite product sold by Vital Proteins is their beef gelatin. So, what exactly is the difference between the Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides and Vital Proteins Beef Gelatin? Well, as far as health benefits go, really not that much! The amino acid profile is EXACTLY the same! Collagen peptides just has the proteins in smaller pieces because of the more intensive processing that it goes through. Because the proteins are broken down into much smaller pieces in collagen peptides, this product does tend to be much easier to digest for some people than gelatin.
Both products are sourced from the bones of healthy, sustainably raised animals.
The main difference is simply their chemical properties.
Collagen Peptides dissolves in both hot AND cold water, making it easy to add to pretty much anything you would like (hot tea, water, coffee, soups, oatmeal, yogurt, smoothies etc.)
Gelatin dissolves ONLY in hot water. When it is placed in cold liquids, it causes the liquid to gel. For this reason you would use this product for different culinary purposes. Think homemade jello, pudding, gummy snacks, popsicles, etc.
Why Do I Use Vital Proteins Products?
Well, for the numerous health benefits I mentioned above that both of these products provide, I have chosen to use this fabulous product almost daily!
A couple of things I have personally noticed since I began regularly using their collagen peptides and gelatin..
- much stronger nails that grow so quickly!!
- clearer skin
- better digestion
- a reduction in hair loss, especially after having a baby
I used both of these products all throughout both of my pregnancies and nursing. Of course, always check with your doctor before beginning any new supplement, especially when pregnant, but this is very safe and may benefit not just you but your baby as well!
As for my little girl (who is currently 21 months), I use both of these products in her foods as an easy way to sneak in high quality, very easy to digest protein into her diet. This is especially nice when kids are picky.
By the way, both the collagen peptides and beef gelatin products have no flavor which makes it that much easier to sneak in for little ones and convenient to add to pretty much anything you would like also without compromising flavor.
Favorite Ways I Use Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides
- Mix 1-2 scoops in to hot herbal tea in the morning
- Add 1-2 scoops into a smoothie
- Mix 1-2 scoops into oatmeal (Harper LOVES oatmeal, so I typically add 1/2 -1 scoop to hers to balance out this meal that is naturally much higher in carbohydrates.)
- Mix 1-2 scoops into a glass of unsweetened almond milk
Favorite Recipes I Use Vital Proteins Beef Gelatin In
- Homemade Fruit Snacks (Wellness Mama) – This is a great snack to have on hand for little ones! Harper LOVES these. I love that I know what’s in it and it is free of high fructose corn syrup, food dyes and any other artificial ingredients.
- Dairy-Free Fudge Pops (Against All Grain) – This is another great snack for little ones, but adults will love this one just as much!! I made these all the time over the hot summer months for Harper and she could not get enough of them. This recipe doubles as an incredible chocolate pudding recipe also. Just put the ingredients in the fridge in a bowl and let sit until gelled instead of pouring it into popsicle molds. You could eat it straight out of the bowl or it would make a great dip for fresh fruit!
I hope this helps if you have been considering trying out their products!! I highly recommend them.
I haven’t tried all of their products, but they have a TON of great stuff. I personally like the two products I discussed and provided links to in this post because they are unflavored, which makes it easy to add to anything, but they have a lot of great flavor options if you prefer that as well. Some other flavor options for the collagen peptides include vanilla and dark chocolate and blackberry. Would love to hear from you if you try anything else to let me know what you think!