There are now more collagen products on the market than ever before. You can find them as powders, gummies, chews, capsules, and even coffee creamer! NativePath Collagen makes a variety of products that I was recently able to try.
While there are all kinds of collagen on the market, they’re not all created equal. I’m picky about ingredient sourcing and want products that aren’t packaged in BPA plastics.
NativePath Collagen checks those boxes (and more) and I was able to try three of their products. In this article, I’ll share my thoughts and how they worked for me.
What Is Collagen?
Collagen is the most abundant protein found in the human body. It’s the structural protein that holds us together. This is why it’s primarily found in the skin, cartilage, tendons, and bones. The word comes from the Greek word kolla, which means “glue.”
Collagen isn’t a protein that’s unique to humans. Animals also have collagen holding them together, and some animal proteins are a good source of dietary collagen. In this case, “animal” protein also includes poultry and fish.
Chicken skin and salmon skin are common sources of collagen alongside bovine collagen. There’s also marine (seafood-based) collagen. Other collagen sources include bones (bone broth), tendons, and even hooves. That’s why chicken, calves’, and pig feet have traditionally been delicacies in many cultures.
What Causes Collagen Decline?
Unfortunately, aging causes our collagen production to go down. Chronic stress can mimic the effects of aging, weakening our collagen “glue.” This can cause symptoms like:
- bags under the eyes
- sagging skin
- brittle nails
- weaker bones
- lower muscle mass
Lack of sleep also sabotages natural collagen production. When we don’t get enough sleep, our bodies don’t make as much human growth hormone for collagen synthesis. In general, anything that increases oxidative stress in the body can lower collagen.
Eating collagen can help lessen some of those symptoms and give the body what it needs to repair tissue. I’ve seen vast improvements in my skin, hair, and nails since I started using collagen in my diet.
Health Benefits of Collagen Peptides
Some health benefits of including collagen peptides in your diet or supplement protocol include:
- More youthful, healthier-looking skin
- Stronger nails
- Decreased appearance of cellulite
- Better sleep
- Improved arthritic pain or joint pain
- Stronger bones
- Help maintain muscle mass as we age
- Improved gut health
Collagen is rich in the amino acid, L-Glycine. Glycine not only helps repair the gut, but it’s anti-inflammatory, supports the immune system, and protects cells.
Researchers studied collagen’s effect in mice to see if it could help ulcerative colitis. The collagen was more effective than the standard medication (mesalamine). The mice had lower inflammation, less damage to the gut lining, and faster healing.
Collagen is also a great, easy-to-use protein source. It’s simple to add some protein to my morning coffee or include a scoop in a smoothie on the go. The user-friendly aspect helps ensure I get my protein in each day.
NativePath Collagen Peptides
I got to try both the Original flavor and the Chocolate flavor. The original flavor is straight-up hydrolyzed bovine collagen from grass-fed cows. Because it’s from cows, it includes both Type I and Type III collagen. These two collagen types are typically found together in the cow and in humans. There are no other ingredients added, making it a very pure product.
Type I Collagen
Type I collagen is known for joint support. A 2017 study looked at athletes with functional knee pain. Over the 12 weeks with daily collagen they had much less activity-related joint pain.
A 2021 follow-up trial of 180 athletes found the same. The type I collagen group had less exercise-induced knee pain than the placebo group. Both studies were over a 12 week period.
Type III Collagen
Type III collagen makes up the skin (including the gut lining). You’ll also find it in some organs, bones, bone marrow, blood vessels, muscles, and other fibers. This type of collagen is also critical in developing teeth (a bone).
Because it’s so involved in inflammation, it can affect many chronic health conditions. Using Type III collagen regularly supports healthy skin and a robust gastrointestinal system. We can also see stronger bones and teeth.
The NativePath collagen chocolate flavor includes:
- Collagen bovine gelatin hydrolysate (grass-fed)
- Natural flavor (chocolate)
- Alkalized cocoa powder
- Pink Himalayan salt
- Enzymatically modified stevia (that’s been fermented)
- Monk fruit extract
The ingredients are simple and high quality. It’s great that they even went to the trouble to seek out pink Himalayan salt for this collagen blend. I also love that there’s no added processed sugar. Monk fruit and stevia provide non-caloric natural sweetness.
NativePath Collagen Creamer
I also got to try NativePath’s Collagen Creamer and was really impressed with it from the get-go. I tried the French Vanilla, which was slightly sweet. It provided a delicious cream substitute for my morning coffee. The ingredients list is again impressive:
- Medium chain triglycerides powder – Made from MCTs from coconut meat and gum acacia from tree sap.
- Collagen bovine gelatin hydrolysate (grass-fed) – Collagen types I and III.
- Natural flavor (Vanilla)
- Monk fruit extract – Read more about the benefits of monk fruit here.
- Enzymatically modified stevia – Read more about stevia’s benefits here.
It’s a clean list of ingredients, including collagen from grass-fed cows and no added sugar. Monk fruit and stevia provide mild sweetness. And MCT powder naturally promotes ketosis first thing in the morning. Ketosis has its own health benefits, like weight management, less inflammation, and sharper focus.
NativePath Collagen As a Whole: My Opinion
I’m a big fan of this line of collagen products. Overall they had a better flavor than others I’ve tried in the past and the collagen powder dissolved easily into my morning coffee. I like that the collagen comes from properly raised cows and has MCT powder to start the day with both healthy protein and healthy fat.
Interested in trying NativePath Collagen? Wellness Mama readers can get it at a discount with the link below.
This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Michelle Sands, ND. She is double board certified in Integrative Medicine and Naturopathic Medicine and is also a Board-Certified Holistic Nutritionist, and competitive endurance athlete. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.
Have you tried any of NativePath’s products yet? What’s your favorite?