Marine Collagen vs Bovine Collagen: Exploring the Differences and Choosing the Right Option

13 Aug 2023by Health Co
Marine Collagen vs Bovine Collagen: Exploring the Differences and Choosing the Right Option

Collagen is a protein that is a fundamental component of the connective tissues in our bodies. It is the most abundant protein found in mammals, accounting for approximately 25% to 35% of the body's total protein content. Collagen provides structural support and strength to various tissues, including the skin, bones, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and blood vessels. The primary function of collagen is to maintain the structural integrity of these tissues and provide them with elasticity and strength. It forms a fibrous network of proteins that act as a framework, holding the cells together and providing a stable structure for tissues and organs.

Collagen is synthesized by specialized cells called fibroblasts. It is composed of amino acids, primarily glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline, which form a unique triple helix structure. This structure gives collagen its strength and stability. There are different types of collagen in the human body, with each type having specific functions and distribution. For example, type I collagen is found in the skin, bones, tendons, and ligaments, while type II collagen is present in cartilage. Other types, such as type III, IV, and V, are found in various organs and tissues.

Collagen production can be influenced by various factors, including age, diet, and lifestyle choices. As people age, collagen synthesis naturally declines, leading to changes in the skin's elasticity and the weakening of connective tissues. This can result in wrinkles, sagging skin, and joint stiffness.

Why Do People Need Collagen Supplements?

Collagen is the second most abundant substance in human body, after water. Unfortunately, the body's natural collagen production starts to drop in our early 20s and decreases by about 1.5% every year, so by the time we are 40, we are creating 25% less collagen. The loss of collagen in our bodies can have serious effects on our skin, joints, hair, and nails, as well as our digestion. Environmental pollutants, poor nutrition, UV ray exposure, and poor sleep quality are just a few of the variables that might contribute to decline.

Regular collagen supplementation can help people attain total wellness, including bright skin, enhanced skin elasticity, greater digestive health, and long, lustrous hair. Recent research suggests that collagen can also lower inflammation, improve sleep quality, and aid in cartilage regeneration.

What is the Difference between Marine and Bovine Collagen Supplements?

The main difference between marine and bovine collagen supplements lies in the source of collagen.

 Marine Collagen: Marine collagen is derived from fish or other marine sources, such as fish skin, scales, or bones. It is typically sourced from fish like cod, salmon, or tilapia. Marine collagen is known for its high bioavailability, which means it is easily absorbed and utilized by the body. It primarily contains type I collagen, which is the most abundant type found in the human body and is beneficial for skin, hair, nails, and joint health.

Bovine Collagen: Bovine collagen is sourced from cows or cattle. It is typically extracted from the skin, bones, or connective tissues of cows. Bovine collagen is rich in type I and type III collagen. Type I collagen provides structural support to the skin, bones, tendons, and ligaments, while type III collagen is found in organs, blood vessels, and other tissues. Bovine collagen is widely available and often used in collagen supplements.

What Are The Benefits of Marine Collagen Supplements?

Fish collagen, also known as marine collagen, is mostly type I collagen. The body can regenerate and heal itself best with this kind of collagen. It has long been utilized in the cosmetics industry for its skin-improving properties. For pescatarians and others who don't eat beef products, taking marine collagen is a fantastic alternative.

  • Skin, Nails & Hair Health: Marine collagen is better for the hair and skin than bovine collagen. It is rich in type I collagen, which is a major component of the skin's structure. Marine collagen supplements may help improve skin elasticity, reduce the appearance of wrinkles, and promote a more youthful complexion. Additionally, some studies suggest that marine collagen may contribute to stronger, thicker hair and nails, and potentially stimulate hair growth.
  • Cleaner Source: Land animals have a much higher risk of contamination through hormones and disease than ocean animals. Wild-caught marine collagen like Marine Collagen Hydrolysate by Bulk Superfoods is the cleanest form of collagen available and is typically regarded as the safest variety.
  • Higher Bioavailability: Marine collagen is often touted for its high bioavailability, meaning it can be easily absorbed and utilized by the body. This is attributed to its relatively low molecular weight compared to other collagen sources. The high bioavailability of marine collagen is believed to enhance its effectiveness in providing the body with the necessary amino acids for collagen synthesis.

What Are The Benefits of Bovine Collagen Supplements?

Bovine, or beef collagen, is the most common source of collagen in supplements. It is mainly made up of Type I and Type III collagen, both of which play a significant role in the repair and growth of bones, ligaments, tendons, and skin. When looking for a high-quality beef collagen supplement, look for grass-fed options like Grass Fed Collagen by Bulk Super Foods.

  • Bone & Joint Health: Collagen is an essential component of cartilage, which cushions and protects the joints. Bovine collagen supplements may support joint health by promoting cartilage strength and reducing joint pain and stiffness. Some preliminary research suggests that bovine collagen may even help improve symptoms of osteoarthritis.
  • Digestive Health: Bovine collagen contains the amino acid glycine, which plays a role in supporting gut health. High levels of stress, poor nutrition, and various food sensitivities can damage the tissue lining of the intestines, leading to several unwanted problems, including a "leaky gut." By repairing microscopic holes in the gut lining, bovine collagen can help to reduce symptoms of leaky gut and other digestive disorders such as IBS and Chrons.
  • Cost-effective: Bovine collagen is more cost-effective than marine collagen. It is also a great choice if you have any shellfish allergies.


Both marine collagen and bovine collagen offer benefits for skin, hair, nails, and joint health. The choice between them ultimately depends on individual factors such as dietary restrictions, bioavailability preferences, sustainability concerns, and personal taste. Consider consulting with a healthcare professional or nutritionist to determine which collagen type aligns best with your specific needs. Remember, regardless of the type you choose, quality, sourcing practices, and reputable manufacturers are vital for a safe and effective collagen supplement. Bulk Superfoods offers different varieties of collagen to choose from. They use sustainable and safe practices to ensure they provide superior-quality products to all their customers.