In the last few decades collagen supplementation has become increasingly more popular thanks to its supposed benefits in sports and exercise recovery, beauty and skincare as well as bone and joint health.Vital Proteins, founded in 2013, are a company that specialize in collagen supplements and their flagship product, Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides is going to be the subject of our review today in this article.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is the most abundant protein found within our body. It would be best described as a structural protein, and contributes to the structure and stability of connective tissue such as our cartilage, bones, tendons, ligaments, and our skin.
Collagen is also abundant within our gut, our spine, blood vessels, parts of the eye and even our teeth!
There are various classifications of collagen too. The five most common types are;
- Type I: skin, tendon, vasculature, organs, bone
- Type II: cartilage (main collagenous component of cartilage)
- Type III: reticulate (main component of reticular fibres), commonly found alongside type I
- Type IV: forms basal lamina, the epithelium-secreted layer of the basement membrane
- Type V: cell surfaces, hair, and placenta
The form most commonly found within collagen supplements is either type II collagen or collagen peptides (otherwise known as hydrolysed collagen).
Peptides are simply short chains of amino acids, the building blocks of protein. Our body will naturally break down proteins which we intake (such as collagen) into peptides which can then be reformed into new proteins and or used for energy.
The Benefits of a Collagen Supplement
When looking at the benefits of supplementation it’s important to note that type II collagen and collagen peptides may confer unique benefits.
Type II collagen is taken at a lower dose (approximately 40mg once daily) for the treatment of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis when there is an autoimmune component to it.
In relation to the supplement we’re reviewing, vital proteins collagen peptides, supplementation with this form of collagen at dosages greater than 10g per day has been linked to improvements in skin health and elasticity as well as improvement in joint health and associative pain in highly active athletes.Studies have also found some benefit conferred to enhanced connective tissue hypertrophy, as well as improved body composition and recovery.
A Look at the Vital Proteins Brand
Vital Proteins are certainly head and shoulders above their competition when it comes to collagen peptides.
Their peptides are sustainably sourced from grass-fed, pasture-raised bovine hide from Brazil.Following on from the huge success of their collagen peptides, the brand has now expanded out to selling more high-quality products including; protein powder supplements, greens powders, multivitamins, immunity supporting supplements as well as other vitamins, collagen ready to drink options and their unique collagen protein bars!
Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides Review
- Paleo Friendly
Let's look at the collagen peptides product under the microscope and give it our critical review.
Coming in a powder form, the standard 10oz tub will provide around 14 servings. You can also order a 20oz tub which will land you double the suggested servings.
When looking at the servings specifically, Vital Proteins suggests 2 scoops (10g each) providing you with 20g of collagen peptides. Benefit has been found at around 10g of hydrolysed collagen a day so in theory you could half the suggested serving size and instead double the total amount of servings in the tub (making it last longer and even more cost efficient).
How to take
As mentioned, the recommend serving is 20g, however research shows benefit with as little as 10g. When you take it is really personal preference and not critically important. If you struggle to remember taking your supplements, simply create a habit around it; we prefer to throw it into a fruit and protein powder smoothie in the morning and have it that way or else we'll have it alongside our evening meal before bed!
Unfortunately, this product has an ingredient list longer than the size of your arm... just kidding! All you'll find here is the highest quality, ethically sourced bovine collagen peptide; Gluten-free, dairy-free, carb and sugar-free, Whole30 approved, and paleo friendly!
No artificial sweeteners here! The collagen peptide powder comes unflavored and reportedly dissolves easily in virtually any liquid.
Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides: Before and After
So, what can you expect after supplementing with collagen peptides?
Vital Proteins state on their website that you can expect to see improvements in skin elasticity, joint health, skin, hair and nail health as well as experiencing a more youthful appearance.
Research findings and product users would both support the benefit of Vital Protein's collagen peptide powder on improving skin elasticity. Doses of as little as 10g a day can lead to significant benefits here, and the 20g dose found within a single serving will likely only lead to further benefit!
Studies evaluating the use of collagen peptide powder on joint health and reported sport / exercise induced pain would support the use of collagen supplementation.
There is even some evidence to suggest a benefit in those suffering with osteoarthritis!
Notably, Crossfit athletes have also supported the use and have raved about the use of the collagen product since incorporating it into their daily routine!
Skin, hair and nail health
Skin health has been shown to improve at doses around 10g per day. Collagen is rich in the amino acid building blocks of the protein keratin, a major structural protein of our hair. While human studies evaluating the link between collagen peptide powder and hair health are lacking, reviews on the site do support its use anecdotally. Finally, when it comes to nail health, supplementing with as little as 2.5g of collagen peptides per day has been shown to increase nail growth and improve brittle nails in conjunction with a notable decrease in the frequency of broken nails!
Youthful appearanceIt's difficult to quantify what exactly a youthful appearance would mean (which would arguably drag down the validity of claims made by Vital Protein given the ambiguity), however, if we see improvements in skin, hair, nail and joint health, as well as improvements in quality of life, are likely to lead to a more youthful appearance.
Vital Protein's collagen peptide powder certainly lives up to the hype!
Vital Protein's bovine collagen powder is more than effectively dosed, sourced ethically and from the highest-grade bovine hide.
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This collagen supplement really is an awesome option for those looking to improve sports and exercise recovery, skin, hair and nail health, their complexion as well as bone and joint health!