6 Best Vegan Collagen Supplements To Try, According To Experts
Most health enthusiast’s morning coffee or smoothie isn’t complete without a scoop of bone-strengthening, skin-smoothing collagen powder, known to strengthen connective tissues. The only problem with collagen is that it comes from animals, which excludes plant consumers from the latest wellness trend. Vegan collagen makers are trying to fill the void in the market, but that’s easier said than done.
That’s because there really isn’t any vegan collagen, although the labels might lead you to think otherwise. “Collagen only comes from animal skin, bone, and connective tissue, and true collagen supplements and products are animal-based,” says Functional Medicine Doctor Stacie J. Stephenson. “If you look closely, you’ll see that ‘vegan collagen’ products should say, often in fine print, that they Support collagen production.
Meet the experts: Taylor Fazio, MS, RD, CN, registered dietitian and wellness consultant at Lanby in New York and Stacie J. Stephenson, functional medicine physician and author of VIBRANT: a revolutionary program to obtain energy, reverse aging and shine.
Your body makes collagen on its own, but this process slows down with age, which is why many turn to collagen supplements. In theory, vegan collagen substitutes can at least provide some of the nutrients needed to maintain production. “Vegan ‘collagen’ may still contain an amino acid profile similar to that found in collagen sources, particularly glycine, lysine, and proline,” adds Taylor Fazio, MS, RD, CN, Health Advisor. -to be at the Lanby in New York. “These structural amino acids are similar to collagen found from animal sources, supporting collagen production when consumed. Other nutrients found in plants, such as vitamin C, are known to support collagen synthesis to potentially improve the quality of skin, nails and hair.
Our top picks
If you’re curious to try vegan collagen, we’ve rounded up some bestsellers and expert picks below.
Important Disclaimer: Dietary supplements are products intended to supplement the diet. They are not medicines and are not intended to treat, diagnose, mitigate, prevent or cure any disease. Be careful when taking dietary supplements if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, and be sure to consult your doctor before taking new supplements (or providing them to a family member) in any situation, as they may interfere with medication.