Living healthy and happy into old age is a life goal in our society. Collagen makes up 30% of the proteins in the human body. It is an essential component for skin, bones, connective tissue and muscles as well as the function of many internal organs. Since the production of collagen in our body decreases with age, an additional supply through collagen powder is recommended. This way you can keep your body healthy and fit even in old age.
This comprehensive collagen powder test 2021 analyses the topic in detail and answers the most important questions. We explain what you should look out for before buying collagen powder. Based on scientific studies, we have worked out the positive and negative effects of collagen powder. With our health article, we want to help you find the right collagen powder for you.
- 1 Weekly newsletter with the best personal finance tips
- 2 The most important facts
- 3 The Best Collagen Powder: Our Picks
- 4 Buying and evaluation criteria for collagen powder
- 5 Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying collagen powder
- 5.1 What is collagen and how is it made into powder?
- 5.2 What effect does collagen powder have?
- 5.3 When and for whom is it useful to take collagen powder?
- 5.4 What types of collagen powder are there and which one suits me?
- 5.5 How much collagen does the body need?
- 5.6 What are the side effects of collagen powder?
- 5.7 How much does collagen powder cost?
- 5.8 Are there other forms of collagen besides powder?
- 5.9 What are the alternatives to collagen powder?
The most important facts
- Collagen is a very valuable structural protein of all living organisms. It is found in skin, hair, cartilage, tendons, eyes, teeth, joints and many internal organs.
- Collagen powder is obtained from animal raw materials. Chicken, pigs, cattle or fish are the main sources of collagen production.
- Collagen powder is often used for anti-aging purposes to tighten the skin and connective tissue. Collagen powder can also be very helpful for joint pain or many diseases.
The Best Collagen Powder: Our Picks
Buying and evaluation criteria for collagen powder
When buying collagen powder, you should pay attention to the following aspects:
These buying and evaluation criteria are described in more detail in the next sections. Because by making the right choice for you, you save money and ensure that you only give your body what it really needs.
Collagen powder differs greatly in its ingredients. Each ingredient has a unique effect on the body. Therefore, before buying collagen powder, you should know which ingredients you need to create a certain effect. The higher and purer the proportion of collagen powder, the better and faster effects can be achieved. Collagen powder is basically derived from animals. The most common sources of raw materials are:
Collagen hydrolysate is often obtained from pork rind, as it is the cheapest way to produce collagen powder. However, production from fish tissue or bovine split is also common. Cheap collagen hydrolysate is often produced in factory farms. Here, however, the animals are often treated with antibiotics. Therefore, you should pay attention to the production and prefer pasture farming.
Did you know: There are also vegan, plant-based collagen powders. These are not pure collagen, as plants do not contain collagen. These are pure food supplements and stimulate the collagen synthesis in our body.
The dosage of collagen powder varies depending on the ingredients as well as the manufacturer. Most of the time, the daily amount is prescribed on the packaging. In addition, the dosage of collagen powder depends on your age, body and medical condition. Therefore, it is advisable to get an opinion from a doctor.
Low dosages are ideal for patients who use collagen powder for beauty purposes, as an anti-ageing product. Younger people should also take a lower dosage. Because up to the age of 25 you still have a good and natural collagen production. Therefore, a high dosage would be superfluous.
Are you older and do you suffer from osteoporosis or rheumatism? Then you should take a larger amount of collagen powder. However, an overdose is almost impossible and not harmful to the body. The excess of collagen powder is merely superfluous as no greater effect is achieved. Nevertheless, the daily dosage should be adapted to your individual body and circumstances.
The quality of collagen powder is very important. Therefore, the ingredients play a major role. A good collagen preparation should not contain any unnecessary additives or preservatives such as artificial flavours or sugar. This is because they slow down the effect of collagen.
Furthermore, the origin says a lot about the quality of the collagen powder. Depending on how the animals are kept and fed, the quality of the powder also differs. Raw materials obtained from animals from factory farms are of lower quality than those from pasture-raised animals. In the case of fish, you can check whether the raw material comes from a sustainable catch, as these are labelled with seals. To be really sure of the quality of the collagen powder, ask the manufacturer for certificates before buying.
Collagen powders often contain additives such as biotin, elastin, hyaluronic acid or vitamin C, among others. Before buying a collagen powder, it is important to read through all the additives on the packaging. Each additive has its own effect.
Which additives you need depends on your body and your circumstances. Therefore, choose a collagen powder with additives that suits you and your needs.
Do you suffer from osteoporosis? Then a pure collagen powder without additives is more effective and recommended. Do you want to smooth out small wrinkles in your skin? Then additives such as hyaluronic acid or elastin can additionally strengthen skin tightening. Pure collagen is soy, gluten and lactose free. Additives often contain egg or soy. Do you suffer from intolerances to these foods? Then you should read all the ingredients on the packaging carefully.
Collagen powder comes in a wide variety of packaging - large or small. You can buy collagen powder in plastic or glass jars as well as in paper bags. The colour and design of the packaging varies depending on the manufacturer. Are you not familiar with collagen powder and have never tried it? Then you should try a smaller 200g package. If you have often tried different collagen products, you can also buy a 1 kg box. The larger packages are usually cheaper in terms of price and performance.
Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying collagen powder
In order to inform you comprehensively about the effectiveness of collagen powder and to give you an understanding of the current state of science, we have summarised all the important information in the following sections.
What is collagen and how is it made into powder?
It is mainly found in the skin, joints, bones, cartilage, tendons and teeth and gives stability and cohesion. (1) Collagen is extracted from the skin and bones of pigs, cattle and chickens, as well as from the scales and flesh of fish. These raw tissues are then further processed into collagen hydrolysate or gelatin.
Collagen hydrolysate is collagen in a powder form. This dissolves well in water and is readily usable by the human body. The powder is produced by an enzymatic hydration of animal collagen. This process happens as follows:
- Raw tissue is treated in an alkaline or acidic process and made soluble in water.
- Collagen is purified with hot water.
- Collagen is extracted.
- Collagen is dried.
What effect does collagen powder have?
- Joints and bones
- Stomach and intestine
Collagen usually takes effect in the body immediately after ingestion. The first improvements can already be seen after a few days to a month at the latest. However, collagen powder should be taken regularly over a period of at least half a year.
According to clinical studies, oral collagen intake over a period of 6 months has shown noticeable results in the skin of patients. A daily dose of 2.5 to 10 g of collagen powder has been sufficient to boost skin hydration and reduce wrinkles.
In addition, there is an increased collagen density in the skin (2, 3) Another study confirms that collagen supplementation tightens the skin. Therefore, collagen has an anti-aging effect on the skin and connective tissue. (4) In other patients, even cellulite improved over a longer period of time. A daily intake of 2.5 g collagen powder per day showed significant improvements in skin density (5)
Joints and bones
Cartilage tissue can be treated with collagen. Studies at the University of Kiel have shown that cartilage is newly formed through regular collagen supplementation. Oral supplementation can therefore promote cartilage formation (6)
A study showed pain relief in osteoarthritis patients after only a short time of ingestion of collagen. Therefore, collagen also helps to reduce the pain of osteoarthritis. (7) Collagen also helps osteoporosis patients. This is a disease in which the bone structure is disturbed and reduced. A study has shown that oral collagen supplementation builds up bone tissue and thus stops bone loss.
In addition, the supply of collagen accelerates the healing of bone fractures. It can therefore be concluded that collagen improves the overall bone structure (8) Furthermore, collagen has also been shown to have an effect on rheumatism sufferers. A daily intake of this preparation helped some rheumatism patients to reduce the sensitivity as well as the swelling of the joints. As a result, the use of painkillers could be reduced. (9)
Stomach and intestines
More and more people are suffering from stomach or intestinal disorders. Scientific studies have investigated the intake of collagen and its effect on the gastrointestinal tract. It was shown that collagen protects and repairs the mucous membrane as well as the intestinal cells. Therefore, collagen also has a positive effect on the intestinal flora (10, 11) Collagen has also been shown to be helpful for our digestive system. The amino acids in collagen protect the cell membrane and the stomach lining. This inhibits inflammation and promotes natural digestion (12)
Collagen can improve our sleep. It has been scientifically proven that collagen peptides improve the quality of sleep. In addition, the concentration on the next day could be increased (10, 13)
When and for whom is it useful to take collagen powder?
After 25, the production of collagen in the body is reduced and continues to decrease with age.
Over time, our skin becomes thinner, wrinkled and drier (14, 15) You can counteract the ageing process by increasing the concentration of collagen in the body through dietary supplements. However, you should take a lower dosage when you are 25 than when you are 70. The older you get, the stronger the dosage should be.
Collagen powder is not only suitable for beauty treatment, but also for various diseases. So do you suffer from skin problems, arthritis, osteoporosis or rheumatism? Then collagen supplements are ideal for you. Caution: Environmental factors such as smoking or high sun exposure can slow down collagen growth.
What types of collagen powder are there and which one suits me?
|Type I||skin, fascia, bones, ligaments, tendons and vessels|
|Type II||elastic, hyaline and fibrous cartilage|
|Type III||heart, skin, blood vessels, internal organs and reticular connective tissue|
Type 1 is most abundant in our bodies. It is found in skin, fascia, bones, ligaments, tendons and vessels. It forms a structure and strengthens these organs. The protein tightens the skin as well as the cells and is therefore often used as an anti-ageing product (16)
Collagen type 2 is found in elastic, hyaline and fibrous cartilage and is needed for our eyes. It is also considered a structural protein and ensures the mobility of cartilage in the body. Therefore, collagen powder from this type is particularly helpful for arthritis diseases or joint complaints.
Type 3 is often found in reticular connective tissue and elastic tissue. You will find these collagens throughout the skin, heart, blood vessels and cartilage. They give your body a certain elasticity.
How much collagen does the body need?
The general guideline is 10 to 15 g of collagen powder a day. The exact dosage is usually stated on the product's package insert. Alternatively, you can get tips and recommendations from a doctor or sports physician. A study with animals showed that even a strong overdose of collagen peptides had no toxic effects. Too much collagen just doesn't have a positive effect on your body (17)
What are the side effects of collagen powder?
How much does collagen powder cost?
Are there other forms of collagen besides powder?
- Collagen Capsules
- Collagen Creams
- Collagen Drinks
Collagen is available in capsules. With this product, the daily dosage is already contained in one capsule. In addition, capsules are neutral in taste and smell compared to powder and are suitable for everyday use. You can easily take collagen capsules with you wherever you go.
However, taking tablets is more unpleasant than taking powder, because you have to swallow the tablets. So do you have trouble swallowing? Then collagen capsules are not recommended. In addition, you always need liquid to take the capsules and the effect is often delayed. This is because the capsules first have to dissolve in the stomach.
Collagen creams, on the other hand, moisturise and tighten the skin directly on the area to be treated. Especially after UV radiation, the skin is heavily stressed and ages. The application of after-sun creams with collagen content helps to strengthen the connective tissue and reduce the formation of wrinkles. In addition, collagen creams are available in different scents.
However, collagen creams only work in one spot. In addition, the application of the collagen cream can make the skin look greasy. It can also take some time for the cream to be absorbed into the skin. Therefore, using collagen creams is more time-consuming than taking collagen in powder or capsule form.
Collagen drinks are very easy to take. This is because taking collagen drinks in liquid form is not only very quick, but also pleasant. This means you can avoid swallowing difficulties. Moreover, no additional liquid is needed.
The disadvantage of collagen drinks is that they are usually more expensive than other collagen products. In addition, the effect of the collagen is usually not as effective as with capsules or creams.
What are the alternatives to collagen powder?
|Orange fruits and vegetables||Apricots, mango, carrots and sweet potatoes||Vitamins A and C|
|Red fruits and vegetables||Cherries, strawberries, red peppers and beetroot||Amino acids Lycopene|
|Oils||Linseed oil||Omega-3 fatty acids|
|Seeds and nuts||Chia seeds, goji berries, almonds, walnuts and cashews||Rich in various amino acids and fibre|
A good source is, for example, vegetables and fruit. Red fruits and vegetables such as cherries, strawberries, red peppers or beetroot contain the amino acid lycopene, which stimulates collagen production in the body. Orange fruits and vegetables like apricots and mango or carrots and sweet potatoes have a lot of vitamin C and stimulate cell growth. They therefore serve as building material for collagen production.
Furthermore, seeds and nuts are rich in many amino acids and dietary fibres. Chia seeds have particularly diverse amino acids. Together with liquid, chia seeds mix to form a kind of gel in the body. This not only promotes collagen production, but also digestion and protects the intestinal flora.
However, absorption through supplements such as collagen powder is quicker for the body to absorb than through food. This is because the powder can be broken down into small peptides and easily absorbed by the body. The proteins in food are first broken down into amino acids and then reassembled. When eating food, the body has to build its own collagen structure from the many amino acids. This process can take a little longer.
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