Since Mighty Blendz launched, we’ve continued to get many questions around collagen.
What is collagen? Why use it over other protein sources? Is collagen vegan? Why don’t you use a vegan protein powder?
First & foremost: What is Collagen?
Think of collagen as the glue that holds your body together. Collagen makes up more than one-third of your total protein, and is the most abundant protein in the body. It acts as a building block for healthy bones, teeth, muscles, skin, joints and connective tissues.
Specifically, collagen is rich in amino acids such as glycine, proline and hydroxyproline—the amino acids that help your body make new collagen.
As collagen has become more popular in recent years, many terms have been thrown around such as “collagen peptides,” “hydrolyzed collagen,” “collagen hydrolysate” and “collagen powder.” These terms are different names for the same thing: collagen protein powder.
The term “collagen peptides” specifically refers to collagen that has undergone a process called hydrolysis. This process breaks down the amino acids in collagen into smaller molecules, making it a lot easier for your body to absorb.
Where does collagen come from?
Collagen can come from a variety of different animals. Mighty Blendz specifically uses Bovine collagen peptides, meaning it comes from cattle byproducts like bones. Think of all the good protein, vitamins, and minerals that would be removed from bones when making bone broth. Because all collagen is derived from animal products, it is not vegetarian or vegan.
As with any animal protein, not all sources are created equal! Mighty Blendz’ collagen protein is sourced from grass-fed and finished, pasture-raised cows in Argentina. Read more here on the difference between just “grass-fed” vs. “grass-fed and finished.” 
Why does Mighty Blendz use Collagen Peptides Over Other Protein Sources?
When choosing a protein source for Mighty Blendz, I considered a few different sources: (1) Grass-finished whey, (2) a plant-based protein like pea or hemp seed, and (3) grass-finished collagen peptides.
- Grass-Finished Whey Protein was a strong first contender for Mighty Blendz. Taste and texture wise, it created a creamy, milky consistency and tasted great. High in protein, low in carbs, and a great source of BCAAs, it was a strong fit for Mighty Blendz’s nutritional standards. However, I wanted to keep the formula completely dairy-free and paleo, so whey was ruled out.
- A Plant-Based Protein like Pea or Hemp seed would fit in the market trend of increasing plant-based products, however plant proteins are not as highly absorbable as animal-based proteins . I wanted Mighty Blendz to provide the nutrients our brains & bodies need to do Mighty things on a daily basis, not just on the nutrition label, but biochemically in our bodies.
- Grass-Finished Collagen Peptides ended up being the perfect fit for Mighty Blendz because we’re all about giving you the mighty essentials you need for a strong brain & body, especially when those essentials can be tricky to figure out how to incorporate into your diet. We all know protein is important, but most of us do not get enough collagen-building proteins to strengthen everything around our muscles rather than just our muscles alone. This fact, in conjunction with all of collagen’s amazing other benefits were the final deciding factors for why collagen peptides should be the protein source & therefore foundation of Mighty Blendz.
Benefits of Collagen
Even as a former vegan for over two years, I have come to love collagen for many good reasons!
Supports Joints, Tendons, Bones & Ligaments
As noted above, collagen is a hero for everything in and around your muscles. In addition to supporting your muscles, collagen protein strengthens your joints, tendons, and ligaments making them more resilient. Research shows that taking hydrolyzed collagen reduces joint pain after exercise and boosts the density of your cartilage, making your joints more flexible. This becomes particularly important as we gain muscle mass or as we age. In the case of building muscle mass, we need to strengthen our surrounding tissues, like joints and ligaments, to hold and support increased muscle weight. As for aging, our bones, joints, tendons, and ligaments naturally weaken as we age which leads to conditions like arthritis, tendonitis, and bone fractures. Regularly consuming collagen can help these tissues to stay strong as we age.
A 2008 study found that athletes who took hydrolyzed collagen for six months saw an improvement in joint pain after exercise. Other studies have shown that collagen helps comfort a sore back and knees.  New evidence suggests that collagen even supports strong bones.
Supports a Healthy Microbiome and Optimal Metabolic Health
Nearly 80% of your immune system is housed in your gut. When your gut becomes “leaky,” toxins, food particles, and infections tear through your intestinal wall and enter your bloodstream, causing inflammation. Over time, this chronic inflammation can lead to autoimmunity. It is estimated that over 70% of the population suffers from some form of leaky gut.
Thankfully, your intestinal wall is made up of microscopic folds or “villi,” which are actually built of collagen. Regularly consuming collagen-producing amino acids helps to strengthen these villi to literally “seal the leak” in your intestinal lining by promoting tissue growth and cellular health.
Skin & Hair Health
Last, but certainly not least, collagen is often called a beauty supplement for its incredible ability to improve skin and hair health. Collagen makes up the bulk of your skin, but your body makes less collagen as you get older starting in your twenties.  Regular collagen intake can help to subdue the unwanted sagging skin and fine lines that come with aging. Studies show that taking collagen regularly can support plump skin and may reduce wrinkles.