Two phrases are often thrown around these days in the supplement, and more specifically protein supplement world: hydrolyzed collagen and collagen peptides.
While you may not be familiar with either term if you have not studied nutrition or shopped for a protein supplement before, really they are both just fancy ways of talking about protein powder made from the most abundant protein in the human body: collagen.
If you are wondering what the difference between the two supplements is, you are not alone!
As this article will demonstrate, neither term is as complicated as it seems. In fact, collagen supplements are a simple and effective way to increase the stores of such a vital protein as collagen in your body. Read on to discover what collagen is, how it can benefit your body, and what exactly is the difference between hydrolyzed collagen and collagen peptides.
What Is Collagen?
What do you think is the common denominator of the skin, the blood vessels, and the connective tissue of the body? Sure, they all serve vital roles in the proper functioning of the body. But they also all get their support and structure from a protein called collagen.
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body, making up about one third of the body’s total protein composition. Its name originates from the Greek word for glue, kólla, because it functions as the glue that holds the body together, strong and stable. Collagen can be found in the skin, blood vessels, connective tissue, tendons, bones, muscles, organs, intestinal lining, hair, nails, teeth and cartilage. In fact, all of these body parts rely on collagen for their structure.
As far as we know there are 28 different kinds of collagen in the body, though there are three of them that are most relevant for our purposes:
- Type I: Type I collagen is by far the most concentrated type of collagen in the body, responsible for about 90% of the body’s collagen supply. It strengthens and gives structure to the connective tissue, teeth, skin, bones, fibrous cartilage, and tendons.
- Type II: Type II collagen works to cushion the joints by supporting healthy elastic cartilage.
- Type III: Type III collagen allows for improved skin elasticity, and functions as structure support for the arteries, muscles, and various organs.
The human body is able to produce collagen on its own. Two amino acids called proline and glycine combine to make procollagen, with the support of vitamin C, copper, and zinc. This production naturally slows and becomes less efficient over time, though so many people need to get adequate collagen from diet and collagen supplements.
Dietary Sources Of Collagen
The best way to improve the amount of protein in your body is by eating high-quality proteins, such as poultry, seafood, dairy, tofu, and beans/soybeans.
Foods that are high in collagen, such as bone broth, egg whites, gelatin, and pork skin, do not necessarily increase the amount of collagen in the body. Digestive enzymes will break these foods down into amino acids, and cannot guarantee that once these amino acids are assembled into proteins that they will become collagen, as opposed to a different protein.
Eating foods high in vitamin C (strawberries, bell peppers, citrus fruits), zinc (guava, cashews), and copper (organ meats, lentils, sesame seeds) will support better collagen production. Additionally, sulfur aids in the synthesis of collagen and inhibits the breakdown of collagen, and can be found in garlic.
However, the best way to ensure you are increasing your levels of collagen is by taking a collagen supplement.
Signs that you may be experiencing a decline in collagen production include wrinkles, weakened muscles, joint pain, and stiff ligaments. Age, poor diet, excessive UV radiation, and smoking all contribute to decreased collagen levels in the body.
What Do Collagen Supplements Do?
Because of collagen’s high presence throughout the entire body, a collagen supplement (and therefore an increase of your collagen supply) can benefit almost every section of the body in some way. Here are the main advantages of using collagen supplements:†
Here are the main advantages of using collagen supplements:†
- Pain relief: Our joints need cartilage to function as a cushion, so as to avoid painful friction. When the cartilage becomes damaged as a result of collagen loss, joint irritation may occur. Collagen supplements are a natural anti-inflammatory for cartilage-related joint pain.
- Skin health: 80% of our skin is made from collagen, so it is absolutely vital if we want great-looking skin (which of course we all want!). Collagen gives skin its strength, so taking a collagen supplement can help support better-looking, stronger, and more hydrated skin. Collagen will also minimize the appearance of wrinkles and any other signs of aging skin.
- Overall appearance: In addition to better skin health, collagen can improve the strength, appearance, and growth of our nails and hair.
- Bone health: Collagen is crucial to the creation and the structure of healthy, strong bones. Adequate amounts of collagen in the body can increase bone mass density, as well as prevent bone loss.
- Digestive health: The intestinal lining needs collagen to remain strong and solid, and for optimal gut health. A thinning intestinal lining may increase the risk for certain gastrointestinal issues.
- Muscle health: Whether you workout everyday or are experiencing weakened muscles as a result of aging, collagen can help you strengthen your muscles and increase your muscle mass.
- Exercise support: Collagen supports athletic performance and recovery. It can also help you put on lean body and muscle mass.
- Cardiovascular health: The arteries and blood vessels in the body gain their structure from collagen, so adequate amounts of collagen allow for stronger blood vessels and better circulation.
- Satiating: Collagen will keep you fuller longer, so you are less likely to eat in subsequent meals. This can help you maintain a healthy body weight while still getting proper nutrients and maintaining an adequate supply of energy.
Now that we know what collagen does for the body, let’s focus on more specific types of collagen supplements, such as hydrolyzed collagen and collagen peptides.
Collagen Supplements: What’s The Difference?
Though collagen peptides and hydrolyzed collagen may sound like different things, at the end of the day they are just varied ways of referring to the same type of collagen supplement.
Regular collagen takes the form of a helix, composed of three long chains and many hundreds of amino acids. This structure is incredibly strong, but is difficult for the body to digest and eventually absorb.
As a result, we started making hydrolyzed collagen. Hydrolyzed collagen is broken down before it reaches the body, so the body is able to absorb and digest it effectively. ‘Peptides’ are these broken-down particles of collagen, made of much shorter chains of amino acids that the digestive system and bloodstream can work with more efficiently.
Most collagen supplements these days come in the form of collagen peptides (otherwise known as hydrolyzed collagen).
For a supplement to work, it needs to be able to be digested and absorbed. If the body cannot use the nutrients within the supplement, what is the point of taking it?
Collagen peptides/hydrolyzed collagen present collagen in its most usable form, and therefore increase the level of benefits you can receive by taking them.†
The Best Collagen Supplement For You
If you have decided to include a collagen supplement in your diet, Livingood Daily Collagen is an excellent option. Let’s go through some of the many reasons why this protein supplement is superior to others:†
- Livingood Daily Collagen is an ultra-clean source of protein. It comes from non-GMO, grass-fed cows right here in the USA.
- It features type I and type III collagen, which account for most of the collagen in the body and provide support all over. This supplement may also increase production of these two types of collagen.
- Livingood Daily Collagen uses hydrolyzed collagen (or collagen peptides), which facilitates better digestion and absorption.
- You will not experience a spike in blood sugar when taking this supplement!
- Livingood Daily Collagen smells and tastes delicious. It is available in vanilla and chocolate.
- It supports weight loss through ingredients like monk fruit and glucomannan.
- This supplement features milk thistle and more specifically its active antioxidant silymarin, which promote liver health and detoxification.
- The addition of B vitamins allow for supported energy and metabolism and healthy immune and cognitive function.
Livingood Daily Collagen complements meals that are in need of additional calories and nutrients, and it also does not gel, meaning it can easily be added into all sorts of foods without affecting the texture.
The following nutritious and tasty recipes all go well with a scoop of protein powder:
- Almond Joy Smoothie
- Raspberry Chocolate Smoothie
- Energy Balls
- Almond Bar Cookies
- Chia Pudding Recipe
- Collagen & Coconut Milk Smoothie
Use your supplement consistently to see the best results!
So, as it turns out, hydrolyzed collagen and collagen peptides are just different ways of referring to the same thing: an effective and highly beneficial protein powder made of collagen.
For better joint, skin, and muscle support, and real, full body health, consider using a collagen supplement such as Livingood Daily Collagen!†