What is the difference between a vegetarian collagen supplement and a collagen peptide protein? And does vegan collagen actually exist? You have likely seen vegan or vegetarian collagen supplements or collagen enhancers on the market, but is collagen actually vegan? In this blogpost, we will break it down for you – Here's Why You Can’t Find Plant Based Vegan Collagen.
What is collagen?
First, let’s cover the basic reason why collagen is not vegan - it’s source. Collagen is sourced from animals because natural collagen is only found in the bodies of animals. Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body. It can be found in your bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and skin.
Collagen provides structural support for your body and is one of the things responsible for skin elasticity. Your body’s natural collagen production slows down by the time you’re in your late twenties. This, unfortunately, increases the risk of the breakdown of joints and can eventually lead to sagging skin and wrinkles. Taking collagen in your diet has a variety of benefits from improving your skin to relieving joint pain improving hair and nails promoting digestion and supporting overall heart health.
Can collagen be vegan?
Let’s get this out in the open. No, collagen is not vegan, and there is no source of plant based vegan collagen.
Unfortunately, there is no such thing as true vegan collagen. The reason vegan collagen doesn’t exist is because collagen is only found in animal products. Just as humans can naturally produce collagen, animals also need collagen protein to maintain their skin, cartilage, and other connective tissues. We can utilize the natural collagen in the tissues of animals to fuel our own bodies.
Are there vegan collagen alternatives?
If you are a strict ethical vegan, there are some vegan collagen alternatives out there for you. However, they are not the same as collagen and don’t have the same benefits. A vegan collagen supplement (usually packed with essential vitamins) only boosts your body's natural collagen production rather than an actual replacement or supplemental real collagen source.
For example, many plant-based types of collagen products use a combination of foods that naturally boost your body’s collagen production. These can be Vitamins such as A, B6, B12, C, E, niacin, biotin, folic acid, iodine, selenium and zinc (found in our Glow Gummies). These vitamin combinations are known to provide the tools your body needs to amp up collagen production on its own. Plus, they give a way for people who don’t eat animal products to enjoy some of the collagen supplementation benefits.
You may also boost your body’s collagen production with the help of some plant-based foods that are high in proline, glycine, lysine, the main amino acids in collagen. Some of the plant foods include soy products, kidney beans, black beans, legumes, nuts, and seeds. These collagen boosters are vegan, yes. However, they don’t contain collagen protein.
Do I need to take collagen supplements?
The fact that your body reduces its natural production of collagen means this isn’t just a vegan issue. Vegetarians, pescatarians, flexitarians, and omnivores can all benefit from collagen protein support. In today’s world, people don’t eat all the nutrient-rich parts of animals, such as liver or bone broth, the way that they used to. Instead, most people are focusing on only or mostly muscle meat.
Even if you enjoy bone broth or organ meats, chances are you are still not eating enough to boost your collagen levels through diet alone. To support your wellness, beauty, performance, and recovery, you may certainly benefit from a boost of collagen in your diet. Try our hydrolysed collagen peptides called Beauty Boost here.