Bone Broth With Collagen
You want to make sure you're getting the most out of your bone broth and that it has enough collagen to help improve your skin and gut health.
The strange thing is that some brands label their products as "bone broth with collagen," but this is just a marketing tactic.
The truth is, properly made bone broths have naturally occurring collagen. From my personal experience, if you find one with 10-12 g protein per serving, 8-10 g of that will be collagen protein.
So, how do you choose a high protein bone broth? Read below.
Before we get started, I'll mention one bone broth with 12 g protein and 10 g collagen per cup. It is made by Bluebird Provisions and you can find it on their site or on Amazon.
What is Bone Broth with Collagen
Bone broth with collagen is made by combining bone broth protein with collagen powder into one supplement. Companies blend these two together to create a 'health halo' around their product.
If you think about it, many people are familiar with bone broth and many with collagen. By putting both ingredients into one product, the brand stands to gain customers looking for both products.
Both of these products are fine on their own. As I've written about in the past, collagen has some side effects and is largely a commodity product at this point. By commodity product I mean there is little difference between products and brands.
Bone broth protein is getting dangerously close to this as well, with many large supplement companies launching the same products to capitalize on the popularity of it.
For this reason, I only recommend properly made products that use a low and slow simmer, without added ingredients, fillers and artificial sweeteners.
Does all bone broth have collagen protein?
Yes, all bone broth contains some amount of collagen protein. How much and whether you get any real health benefits depends on how the broth is made and what ingredients and bones are used.
What makes bone broth unique and superior to regular collagen supplements is that it contains a family of compounds known as glycosaminoglycans which include glucosamine, chondroitin and hyaluronic acid.
These potent compounds help to reduce inflammation in your gut for better digestion and increase connective tissue around your joints.
What are the benefits of using bone broth with collagen?
The benefits of using bone broth with collagen are:
- Joint health
- Better digestion
- Gut health
- Hydration for energy
- Weight loss
- Skin, hair, teeth and nails.
I'll go through each of these below for you.
1. Builds Supple Joints
We all want to be a supple leopard, but it's not so easy. As we age, our joints succumb to wear and tear. Maybe you're in chronic pain or just get aches.
The truth is that collagen is a major component of cartilage, ligaments and tendons, which are all essential for healthy joint function and mobility.
The amino acids found in bone broth specifically help to rebuild and repair your connective tissues. Why is this important? Connective tissue adds lubrication to your joints, making them supple and reducing pain, inflammation and joint stiffness.
A 2019 study showed that chicken cartilage and bones used to make both collagen and bone broth are particularly effective in improving joint function in patients with osteoarthritis (1).
The other cool thing is that gelatin (another protein in bone broth) along with vitamin C helps with tendon and ligament repair. A 2017 study found that gelatin increased collagen synthesis post exercise and was able to repair tendons (2).
2. Helps Improve Digestion
Bone broth with collagen is a fantastic food source that can help boost digestion. The specific amino acids like glycine, proline and glutamine help to support and maintain a healthy gut lining.
Gelatin also helps to stimulate digestive enzymes to your stomach and gut when you need them most. This helps you digest food properly without the dreaded bloating or gas.
3. Reduces Gut Inflammation (IBS, IBD, Crohn's, Colitis)
Bone broth with collagen can support gut health by providing the cells lining the intestinal tract with essential amino acids and peptides needed for optimal gut lining health.
These amino acids (glycine, proline and glutamine) help you form new connective tissue in the mucosal layer of your gut. This reduces inflammation from years of eating inflammatory foods.
A 2022 study showed that bone broth helps to reduce that dreaded leaky gut while helping to get rid of inflammation associated with IBS, IBD, Crohn's and colitis (3).
4. Helps Replenish Electrolytes and Protein
Bone broth is naturally high in two things: protein and electrolytes like potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and chloride. Collagen peptides also provides some calcium for your bones.
If you are lacking hydration, live in a hot climate or exercise regularly, you may be going through your day dehydrated without knowing it.
In this case, I recommend looking for a chicken bone broth high in potassium like the one from Bluebird Provisions. It has 300 mg per cup, which is more than a banana.
These minerals also help to build stronger bones and can improve athletic performance by allowing you to recover quicker.
5. Provides Stable Energy Without the Crash
Bone broth with collagen has been said to help stabilize energy levels without the crash that often comes with other energy-boosting products.
This is similar to the point I mentioned above. Because of the unique blend of vitamins, amino acids and minerals, it keeps your body properly fuelled for longer.
This combination of electrolytes and brain boosting amino acids like glycine helps to ensure that energy levels remain steady and don't experience a crash after a few hours. Also, the vitamins and minerals help to provide immunity support and reduce inflammation, thus improving overall physical and mental wellbeing.
6. May Help with Weight Loss
Bone broth collagen may help with weight loss because it is high in a specific type of protein that helps keep you fuller, longer. Here are a few specific reasons why it helps:
- Protein helps to build lean muscle mass, which is essential for losing weight.
- Bone broth is rich in a conditionally essential amino acid (glycine) which can help to reduce sugar cravings and supports positive mood states.
- By providing the building blocks for a healthy gut lining and normal digestion, you actually digest food properly which can reduce bloating associated with weight gain.
With all that said, it is important to remember that bone broth collagen should only be used as a dietary supplement and not as a weight reduction tool. There is no direct studies using bone broth for weight loss, so I am extrapolating based on other research.
7. Helps Strengthen Hair, Teeth and Nails
Bone broth with collagen helps strengthen hair, teeth and nails by providing you with unique amino acids, hyaluronic acid and collagen peptides needed for growth.
It also contains proline and hydroxyproline, which are key components of cartilage and collagen in the body, helping to promote skin hydration and elasticity.
There is no specific evidence that collagen can grow your hair, but anecdotal reports claim it helps.
How to Choose a High-Quality Bone Broth With Collagen
Choosing the right bone broth with collagen is not easy. You must look for the following things or else you risk not getting any of the benefits and wasting your hard earned money.
1. Check the Source
Look for products sourced from USA or Canada, non-GMO, with simple ingredients. Avoid products sourced from Asia and South America due to different animal welfare standards, hormones and antibiotic laws.
2. Look for Quality Meat
Choose grass-fed beef and pasture-raised chicken for bone broth. They produce superior quality meat and bones with higher levels of omega-3s, B vitamins and minerals. Avoid hormones, antibiotics and potentially harmful chemicals.
3. Avoid Additives
Avoid products with artificial sweeteners, 'natural flavors,' yeast extract, dextrose and other flavor enhancers.
4. Real Bone Broth
Check the ingredient list for bone broth or bones as the second ingredient (water is the first). Collagen listed first or second means it is a collagen powder, not a bone broth with collagen.
5. Read Customer Reviews
Read customer reviews and ratings on independent 3rd party websites, filter by most recent and look for themes and individual comments.
6. Sodium per Cup
Chicken bone broth should have no more than 180 mg sodium per cup, beef bone broth no more than 220 mg per cup. Avoid products that add salt unnecessarily.
7. Protein per Cup
Look for at least 9 grams of protein per 250 ml serving size for liquid or the equivalent powder to make 250 ml. Without protein, there are no health benefits.
1. Check the Source of the Ingredients
Look for products that are sourced from the USA or Canada and are non-GMO with simple ingredients you are familiar with. The dirty secret of collagen supplements is that they're mostly sourced from Asia and South America.
While some of these are fine products, many of them come from animals raised in industrial feedlot farming operations. They are subject to different animal welfare standards, hormones and antibiotic laws.
2. Look for Pasture Raised Chicken or Grass-Fed Beef
It is important to look for grass-fed beef when choosing beef bone broth because it means the animal was not subject to grain centric diets that rely on monocrop agriculture which is killing our soil.
Grass fed cows produce superior quality meat and bones and eventually bone broth too. They have slightly higher levels of omega-3s, B vitamins and minerals.
Similarly, pasture raised chickens tend to be raised in better living conditions that regular ones. This produces animals that are happy and meat that is not pumped full of stress hormones from an animal that is perpetually scared because of their living confines.
Both of these things tend to produce animals that are not fed hormones, antibiotics, or other potentially harmful chemicals.
3. Avoid Additives and Preservatives
When selecting a high-quality bone broth with collagen, it is important to avoid products with artificial sweeteners, 'natural flavors,' yeast extract, dextrose and other flavor enhancers.
Large brands play games with their products. They try to cut costs by adding cheap filler ingredients to make their products taste delicious. The problem is that these additives do not belong in bone broth or collagen and can mess with your gut health.
4. Does it Use Real Bone Broth or Bones
This is an easy one. Simply check the ingredient list. If you are looking at a liquid product then the second ingredient should be bones or bone broth (the first ingredient is water).
If you are considering a bone broth protein or powder, then the first ingredient should be bone broth powder.
If you see anything else other than these two things then the brand is doing something misleading. You might see collagen listed first or second, which means it is a collagen powder and not a bone broth with collagen.
5. Read the Customer Reviews
To find out if a certain bone broth with collagen is of high quality, it is important to read customer reviews and ratings. Start by looking at the customer rating and reviews broken down by feature on Amazon or another independent, 3rd party website.
You cannot trust reviews from the companies' own website because these can be edited. They can easily delete or hide and negative ones and only show you good reviews.
It is also important to read individual reviews and look for any questions or comments regarding the quality of the product. Make sure you filter the Amazon reviews to most recent. Are there themes that you notice after reading a few recent reviews?
6. How Much Sodium Per Cup
Look for a chicken bone broth with no more than 180 mg sodium per cup. For beef, look for no more than 220 mg per cup. Beef will naturally have a bit more salt, but you need not worry about it.
Also look for products that do not add salt in the ingredient list. This is unnecessary and usually used to mask a flavor deficiency.
7. Protein Per Cup in Your Bone Broth Collagen Powder
Protein is the way to tell if you're really getting health benefits or if you are wasting your money. Without protein, there are no benefits.
Look at the back of the package and find out how much there is per 250 ml serving size for liquid or the equivalent powder to make 250 ml. You want at least 9 grams. If not, you should consider finding a brand with at least this much.
What type of collagen is found in bone broth?
Bone broth has both Type II and Type III collagen, depending on what type you are drinking. Chicken bone broth is full of Type 2 because it is made of chicken sternum, bones and connective tissue. This makes it great for joint pain.
On the other hand, beef bone broth has more Type 2 collagen because it is made of beef bones. This type is great for digestion, gut health, organ health and connective tissue throughout your body.
When boiled, the collagen in connective tissue is broken down into gelatin and various other health-promoting amino acids, such as glycine and glutamine, which are necessary for supporting healthy and flexible joints.
How much collagen is in bone broth?
The amount of collagen in your bone broth depends on the total protein in the product. In traditionally made bone broths, you can expect 80-90% of the total protein content to be collagen or gelatin. So if you have product with 10 g of protein per cup, you can expect 8-9 grams of hydrolyzed collagen.
I can't speak for other brands on the market, but Bluebird Provisions has 10 g collagen per cup.
It is also important to point out the difference between gelatin and collagen. Gelatin is simply a cooked form of collagen. But the two have the same amino acid profile, so you get the same health benefits.
What is the difference between bone broth and collagen bone broth?
Bone broth and collagen bone broth are two popular beverages that have gained much attention in recent years. Bone broth is made by boiling the bones of animals and extracting the nutrients from the ligaments, tendons and bone marrow. It is then either consumed in liquid form or dehydrated into powder form.
Collagen bone broth is a protein component isolated out of the bone broth liquid, combined with added collagen peptides. It is more of a hybrid product.
Is one of them better? It depends what your goals are and how you want to use it. Bone broth has better gut healing and digestive properties because of the extra amino acids and glycosaminoglycans, like glucosamine, chondroitin and hyaluronic acid.
Collagen is generally used in beverages like coffee or juice because it is flavorless. So if you prefer the taste of broth and want gut healing properties, go for it.
Are there any side effects associated with taking bone broth with collagen?
Bone broth collagen causes some side effects like bloating, diarrhea, allergic reactions and histamine reactions to those sensitive to histamines. If this is you then I would recommend stopping consumption immediately. You can learn more about bone broth side effects and what to do if you get them in that article.
Is bone broth with collagen better for you?
Bone broth with collagen is not better for you. It is certainly more processed and more likely to come from overseas sources than bone broth alone. For this reason, bone broth is superior than one with collagen.
What type of bone broth has the most collagen?
Beef bone broth has slightly more collagen than chicken, but there are so many variables between brands that it is more important to choose a quality brand than it is to nitpick between different flavors.
I suspect that beef has slightly more because of the density of bones used and the adhering connective tissue found in the bones we use.
For a full breakdown of of all attributes of bone broth, checkout my comparison: chicken vs beef bone broth. I used lab testing on Bluebird Provisions' products to give you exactly how much is in each type of broth along with minerals, vitamins and electrolytes.
How much bone broth should you drink daily to get collagen?
To boost your collagen levels, it is best to drink 5 cups or servings of bone broth per week. Some people tell you to drink more, but this is a reasonable starting point that gives you 50 grams of collagen per week.
From here you can make sure you are eating collagen rich foods to get this number up to 60-70 grams for the week.
When you’re looking for a high protein bone broth, make sure to check the label. If it is made using traditional low and slow simmer and has at least 10 g protein per cup, then you don't need one with added collagen.
I recommend Bluebird Provisions non-gmo chicken bone broth. It’s naturally low sodium and has all the amino acids and collagen you need for glowing skin and healing your damaged gut.