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A List Of Best Collagen Alternatives For Optimal Health
May 16, 23
Tags: Usage
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Author: Sony Sherpa

A List Of Best Collagen Alternatives For Optimal Health

  • by Sony Sherpa

    Medically reviewed by

    Sony Sherpa

    Dr. Sony Sherpa is a board-certified Clinical Doctor and dedicated advocate for holistic medicine, specializing in functional mushrooms. Her blend of medical expertise and passion for alternative wellness lends authenticity to her role as a contributor for Natures Rise.

  • |
  • 8 min read
A List Of Best Collagen Alternatives For Optimal Health

The human body produces collagen on its own, but it produces less as people age. This causes unpleasant side effects that are a normal part of aging, such as sagging skin, wrinkles, dull hair, and damaged nails, and can even impact bone health.

People have resorted to collagen alternatives to find a more natural fountain of youth. These days, collagen supplements are increasingly popular, but not all are made from plants. So, if you're looking for plant-based alternatives to collagen, keep reading.

Why Is Collagen Important?

 Why Is Collagen Important?

Collagen is the main structural element of extracellular connective tissue, which gives your tissues their elastin-like properties. Your tendons and bones receive a contractile force from this extracellular connective tissue, which enables muscle movement. There is evidence that suggests collagen supplements may help maintain the health of your skin and joints.

Collagen is incredibly beneficial for general health. Supplementing with collagen (or eating more foods high in collagen) can be especially beneficial if you have a chronic illness or feel generally unwell.

Health Benefits Of Collagen

Health Benefits Of Collagen

Increasing your collagen intake can lead to the following health benefits:

Offsetting age: Collagen is the body's most abundant naturally occurring protein. However, as we age, this production level starts to decline, making it even more crucial to consistently consider collagen supplements to maintain these basic levels.

Joint Pain: Collagen makes up our connective tissues, so when it breaks down, it naturally causes more pain in the knees, elbows, and other joints. Collagen supplements can help the body produce more collagen and may ease anxiety related to exercise and physical activity.

Hair: Hair follicles that are dull and thinning are another sign of low collagen levels. In other words, boosting your collagen consumption can significantly improve your hair's thickness and fullness and encourage shine and volume.

Bowel health: The intestinal tract's inability to effectively absorb some foods results in a leaky gut, which is generally brought on by consuming too many processed or artificial food categories. Since the intestinal lining is composed of skin cells and is vulnerable to deterioration, adding collagen helps strengthen it.

Skin health: Collagen is perhaps best known for its effects on skin elasticity and wrinkle reduction. In addition to the numerous health advantages described above, collagen supplements can make skin look younger and more vibrant.

Collagen Powder Substitute

Collagen Powder Substitute

Most collagen supplements are neither vegetarian nor vegan. However, the majority of supplements contain minute amounts of protein-rich animal byproducts; consider the common foods chicken, beef, and fish.

Many collagen powders are created using grain-finished cow skins and are heavily processed using high heat or harsh chemical solvents. Additionally, most collagen powders begin as grain-finished cow hides or other less nutrient-dense animal parts.

Fish scales and skin are used to create marine collagen, which contains type 1 collagen. Cowhide is used to produce bovine collagen, which contains type 1 + 3 collagen. Food alternatives of collagen found in food that encourages collagen formation include:

  • Pork bone broth
  • Beef bone broth
  • Eggs
  • Skin-on chicken
  • Organ meats
  • Fish and seafood
  • Turkey

Your collagen levels can be raised by eating foods that contain it, but since your body also produces collagen, eating foods that encourage this process has additional advantages. Vitamin C,  glycine, proline, zinc,  copper, sulfur, and antioxidants are nutrients that help collagen formation or stop collagen from breaking down.

By giving your skin more of the nutrients that promote collagen formation and those that shield your existing collagen from deterioration, you can support the levels of collagen in your skin.

Vegan Collagen Alternative

The list above is remarkable, but there is a catch: these collagen substitutes are made from animal byproducts. Therefore, you need to think outside the box and explore beyond conventional collagen powders to improve your body's supply of this essential protein if you want to avoid using animal collagen supplements. However, there is no need to worry because vegan-friendly ways increase your body's collagen levels. For example, the following foods are a good source of collagen:

  • Red bell pepper
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Broccoli
  • Citrus fruit
  • Tomatoes
  • Aloe vera
  • Berries
  • Nuts
  • Guava
  • Mushrooms (Reishi, Chaga, Lion’s mane)

Mushroom Powder: A Great Substitute For Collagen Powder

Plant-based mushroom powders are an excellent source of protein and adaptogens, which support the immune system. You can incorporate mushroom powders into your daily routine for health advantages that strengthen the body, empower the mind, and improve your quality of life instead of eating mushrooms as food.

Chaga Mushroom Powder

Chaga Mushroom Powder

Inonotus obliquus or Chaga mushroom powders are highly regarded as a natural way to enhance the immune system(1). In addition, the mushroom powders can be consumed daily in your preferred beverage, ensuring that the powder's advantages reach your digestive system.

Chaga powders derived from plants can be coupled with the immune-boosting ingredients Schisandra berry and Astragalus root to support the body's natural defenses.

Reishi Mushroom Powder

Reishi Mushroom Powder

The capacity of Reishi mushroom powders to reduce anxiety (2) and soothe the mind has made them popular worldwide. As a result of the enormous physical toll that stress may have on the body, many people turn to mushrooms that have been strengthened with adaptogens.

Ashwagandha root, one of the most well-liked adaptogens today, can be found in trace amounts in some plant-based Reishi powders. Ashwagandha root offers a balancing reaction to stressful situations, allowing the body and the mind to unwind after trying days. Reishi powders boosted with ashwagandha are frequently used to assist people in unwinding and falling asleep soundly during stressful times.

Additionally, Reishi and other types of mushrooms are great providers of Vitamin D (3), which has been found to support the body's collagen production. Therefore, Reishi mushroom powder can help you live a healthier, longer life by giving your body the vitamins and nutrients it needs to support good collagen production, lessen stressful situations, and live a more fulfilling existence.

Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder

Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder

Eastern herbalists have used powdered Lion's mane mushrooms for centuries to strengthen the brain and promote cognition(4). As a result, Lion's mane powder has been identified as a nootropic that helps to awaken and clarify the mind to support healthy brain function.

Rhodiola, an adaptogen that athletes regularly utilize to prevent physical and mental exhaustion, can also be found in trace amounts in some plant-based Lion's mane powders. Rhodiola improves optimum cognitive performance and helps to promote physical endurance.

FAQs About Collagen Alternative

What Food Is Highest In Collagen?

Bone broth is by far one of the richest sources of collagen. Apart from that, red meat, eggs, fish, and spiraling are foods dense in collagen.

What Drink Is High In Collagen?

A cup of bone broth is high in collagen. Alternatively, you can add mushroom powders to a glass of hot water for easy and quick collagen.

What Is The Best Way To Get Collagen In Your Body?

The best way to get collagen is to eat food rich in collagen or take a collagen supplement. You can also help your body produce more collagen through a healthy diet.

Key Takeaways

If a diet high in collagen does not necessarily appeal to your palette, using collagen alternatives like mushroom powder is easier to digest this essential protein. These powders are simple to incorporate into any favorite beverage, such as coffee or a smoothie. Additionally, mushrooms made from plants are a great source of protein and adaptogens, which support the immune system.

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  1. Immunomodulatory Activity of the Water Extract from Medicinal Mushroom Inonotus obliquus, (1) 
  2. Evaluation of Antianxiety Potential of Four Ganoderma (Agaricomycetes) Species from India in Mice, (2) 
  3. Nutritional Profile and Health Benefits of Ganoderma lucidum “Lingzhi, Reishi, or Mannentake” as Functional Foods: Current Scenario and Future Perspectives, (3) 
  4. Neurotrophic properties of the Lion's mane medicinal mushroom, Hericium erinaceus (Higher Basidiomycetes) from Malaysia, (4)

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