How Much Collagen Should I Take?
Reviewed by Jaimee Gooley, R.D.
Written by Hannah Marchese
Dietary supplements are extremely popular these days. From turmeric to vitamins to collagen, it seems like there are endless options of supplements. There's something for every internal and external problem you may encounter with your body and overall health. But with all of these options, there's also a lot of confusion about what really works and what you should be taking.
A huge multi-tasking supplement is collagen. The benefits of collagen supplements are extensive and important. From glowing skin to improved bone health, gut health, joint health, and more, there's a lot collagen can do for your body. It aids in everything from our connective tissues, to smoothing fine lines in our face, to skin health, to stomach issues, and more.
Collagen is the most abundant protein in our body and it's formed through chains of amino acids, such as the essential amino acids glycine and proline. Amino acids are building blocks in our bodies and are a key component of collagen. Once we enter our 20's, collagen production begins to decline by around 1% per year. As we know from all of the important benefits listed above, it's essential that we have enough collagen in our bodies.
Since it is possible to not produce enough collagen to where it's sufficient to keep everything working and healthy, supplements (along with eating collagen-rich foods) are the best way to ensure your collagen intake is high enough. There are many options, such as the type and variety. When people begin collagen supplementation, one of the most common questions they have is how much they should be taking daily. Read on to learn more about the optimal amount you should be taking.
How much do I take per day?
The easiest way to determine how much collagen to take each day is to simply read the label of the supplement you purchased and see what its recommended daily serving is. If you tried that and feel you aren't seeing results, you may want to consider taking a little more each day. The amount of collagen you take daily can differ depending on your size, weight, and goals. For example, if you're trying to lose weight or increase your muscle mass, you would want to try and have around 15 grams a day in order to start to see progress and results. If you're looking for general maintenance for your health, or are trying to improve your skin health, 12 grams is a good place to start.
Something to consider is also simultaneously increasing your vitamin C intake because it's an essential vitamin involved with collagen levels in your body. The bottom line is that the grams of collagen you take should be proportionate to your body and your specific goals. That means you could need more, or even less, of what is recommended.
Another good thing is it's easy to take collagen. Collagen powder can be added to smoothies, bone broth, or simply mixed into a beverage of your choice. Rarely, collagen supplements can cause mild side effects including unpleasant taste, upset stomach, and feelings of fullness. Collagen is a pretty safe supplement to try and see what works for you.
The recommended daily serving is simply that: a recommendation. It's a basis to start and gauge what will give you the best results. Let's say you're taking collagen to help with your joint pain. It would make sense to take more than someone who is just taking it to maintain their overall health. Like anything you would take over the counter or prescribed, it's all relevant to how severe your issue is. That being said, you can always consult a doctor or nutritionist to figure out exactly what is right for you. Otherwise, just start with the daily recommended dose for a few weeks and see if you are getting results with that amount. Don't stress; it's not dangerous if you take more than what is recommended.
When should I take the collagen?
The convenient thing about taking collagen is that you can take it whenever you need it. Some people notice improved energy when they take it in the morning; if that's you, then add it to your coffee or breakfast drink. Some people feel that it works best when taken before they go to sleep, in order to work overnight to repair sore muscles and strengthen your skin.
Another option is to take it in smaller doses throughout the day so that your body continues to absorb it. Whatever works for you is what works for taking the supplement!
Something important to note is that collagen supplements work best when they are taken daily. This allows the collagen to build up in your body, and work more effectively. When you take it once in a while, you won't be getting enough collagen to actually receive the benefits. Taken daily, it can actually be absorbed into the body and utilized for repairing issues such as gut health, dull skin, and increasing muscle mass.
Types of Collagen Available:
As we mentioned in the beginning, there are many types of collagen available. They are all derived from animals, which means there is not a vegan option. The type of collagen you choose is important since it is so essential to our well-being. Available supplements come from bovine collagen, porcine collagen, marine collagen, or chicken collagen, and it is formed from the bones and skin of that animal.
It comes as pills or powder; more specifically, collagen protein powder, hydrolyzed collagen, and collagen peptides. There aren't many differences between each supplement when it comes to the overall benefits.
Health benefits include: healthy skin, assisting with weight loss through increased protein intake, improved skin elasticity, less joint pain, and more. Since these products are coming from animals, make sure to read the labels and see what's in the ingredients. Clean and simple is best. Look for things like grass-fed, wild-caught, organic, and non-GMO. That way you know you are getting the very best product.
At the end of the day, it comes down to finding a product that works for you and helps you achieve the results you want with your health and wellness goals.
If you're worried about dosing out how much collagen you should be taking, or don't want to deal with the hassle of pills and powder, consider trying our Kalumi BEAUTYfood bars. We make it easy to get in your 8 grams a day. In addition to wild-caught marine collagen, our bars contain 11-13 grams of clean protein and contain sweet potato (vitamin A) and cocoa butter (flavonoids and polyphenols) to help promote and retain collagen production further. Additionally, they are packed with nutrients that help keep you fully energized. Perfectly fit for a quick snack anytime and anywhere, or even a delicious meal replacement!
These statements have not been approved by the FDA.