What is collagen?

Scientific studies on the benefits of a collagen supplement on joint pain.

A study carried out on 147 athletes who practice sport daily has proven the effectiveness of collagen peptides on joint pain. (1) 

This study was carried out over a period of 6 months and the results were observed thanks to 5 parameters: joint pain when walking, standing up, carrying weight, carrying objects and joint pain at rest. 

To carry out this study, the researchers randomly selected 147 participants divided into 2 groups: one receiving 10g per day of collagen hydrosol and the other receiving a placebo. In order to avoid any bias, the participants do not know whether they receive the placebo or the collagen daily. The collagen and the placebo in this study are given in liquid form without taste or smell. 

The results obtained after 6 months of treatment are statistically significant for all parameters. Indeed, the group having received the collagen shows an important and significant improvement, compared to the group having received a placebo. The researchers went even further and noticed that for the participants (63) with knee arthralgia, the difference between the placebo groups and the groups that received the collagen was even more significant. 

The researchers therefore concluded that collagen hydrolyzate could improve joint health and reduce the risk of joint deterioration in people at risk. 

Brazilian researchers wanted to demonstrate the positive effects of collagen on osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. For this, they carried out a systematic review and selected 68 studies that were published between 1994 and 2014. (2) The purpose of a systematic review is to make a critical synthesis of existing knowledge on a given question. The question was whether collagen hydrolysates had an action on bone cartilage and therefore to assess their effects on osteoporosis or osteoarthritis. 

Following the analysis of all these studies, they deduced the conclusion that collagen has a therapeutic effect on osteoporosis and osteoarthritis, in particular by increasing bone mineral density. This increase has a protective effect on the articular cartilage and provides symptomatic pain relief. They observe that with a dose of 12g per day there is a significant improvement in the symptoms of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. 

Scientific studies on the benefits of a collagen supplement on skin aging. 

Doctors are interested in the effects of collagen supplementation  on the skin of 69 women aged 35 to 55. (3)

In order to carry out their study, they randomly created 3 groups. Group 1 received a daily dose of 2.5 g of collagen for 8 weeks. Group 2 received  a daily dose of 5.0 g of collagen for 8 weeks. These two groups were compared to group 3 which received a placebo for 8 weeks. 

The results of their study were observed on different criteria including: 

  • The elasticity of the skin 
  • Skin hydration 

They observed these parameters before the cure, after 4 weeks of cure and after 8 weeks of regular intake. 

The doctors concluded that for both collagen supplements (group 1 and 2) there was a significant improvement in skin elasticity after 4 weeks and 8 weeks. With regard to the hydration of the skin the doctors found that there was an increase in this one especially in the women of more than 50 years. 

The results of this study clearly revealed that collagen supplementation has a beneficial effect on skin physiology, as indicated by the increase in elasticity after 4 weeks and 8 weeks. In some women, an increase in skin elasticity of up to 30% could be observed after an 8-week treatment. 

Are there any dangers in doing a collagen treatment?

According to the USFDA (The United States Food and Drug Administration) daily collagen supplementation does not constitute a danger for the consumer. 

However, he points out that it is important to choose your collagen carefully because there is not much regulation when it comes to the quality, absorption and effectiveness of collagen. 

How to choose collagen?


a) Galenic 

There are a multitude of food supplements based on collagen: in capsules, in liquid form, in powder, in stick… 

In summary, a large amount of collagen must be ingested daily for it to be effective. 

Most experts consider the dose of 12g per day to be the ideal dose in the treatment of joint pain. 

While a lower dose is sufficient to achieve beneficial effects on the skin. 

Thus, it is important to know why you need to take collagen. 

For joint or muscle pain, a treatment based on capsules containing on average only 500mg of collagen, is not of great interest. 

Collagen powder is the most effective solution, as it allows you to obtain an amount suitable for this treatment. 

b) Origin 

Supplements based on collagen hydrolyzate can be of bovine or marine origin. The difference between the two lies in the size of the collagen peptides. 

Marine collagen has smaller peptides and will therefore be better absorbed by the body.

Bovine collagen is easier to produce than its marine counterpart, so it costs less. Moreover, in case of shellfish allergy, it is the only alternative. 

Whether it's Marine or Bovine collagen, both have proven their effectiveness on skin, hair and joint pain. 

When and how to take collagen? 

Collagen can be taken with or without meals. You can consume it in the morning and/or in the evening. The most important thing is to respect the recommended daily dose. 

Collagen is not recommended for children and adolescents as it has not been tested on them. Since collagen is an abundant protein in this population, supplementation is of no interest. 

In order to respect the conditions of the clinical studies and therefore to observe significant results, it is important to carry out a collagen cure over a long period. 

Should you choose a supplement containing only collagen or mixed with other active ingredients?

It may be interesting to supplement with collagen, but also with hyaluronic acid, for example. It will depend on what you are looking for in your dietary supplement. 

If you want to relieve your joint pain, then a combination of collagen with glucosamine and chondroitin is a very good idea. The synergy of the 3 active ingredients has proven its effectiveness.

If you want to combat aging skin, diminish wrinkles on your face or weaken your hair, then a combination of collagen with hyaluronic acid is best suited. 

Finally, if you want a versatile dietary supplement that can both relieve your pain and restore radiance to your skin, you can opt for a unique collagen supplement.


1: Clark KL, Sebastianelli W, Flechsenhar KR, Aukermann DF, Meza F, Millard RL, et al. 24-Week study on the use of collagen hydrolyzate as a dietary supplement in athletes with activity-related joint pain. Curr Med Res Opinion 2008;24(5):1485-96. 

2: Porfírio, Elisângela; Fanaro, Gustavo Bernardes (2016). Collagen supplementation as a complementary therapy for the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis: a systematic review. Revista Brasileira de Geriatria e Gerontologia, 19(1), 153–164. doi:10.1590/1809-9823.2016.14145

3: Proksch, E.; Segger, D.; Degwert, J.; Schunck, M.; Zague, V.; Oesser, S. (2014). Oral Supplementation of Specific Collagen Peptides Has Beneficial Effects on Human Skin Physiology: A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study. Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 27(1), 47–55. doi:10.1159/000351376