Collagen is a type of protein produced naturally in our bodies. It plays an essential role in the structure of our skin, bones, cartilage, and other connective tissues. Collagen is present in most animals, primarily mammals. When sold in foods or supplements, collagen is typically derived from beef cattle or sharks.
Collagen As A Dietary Supplement
As a powdered health food product, collagen is a dietary supplement said to promote healthy hair, skin, and nails. Understandably, it’s often thought of as a beauty supplement for those interested in glowing skin and long, strong hair.
But collagen is also said to aid with joint health, recovery, and even ailments like leaky gut syndrome. For this reason, it’s often used by athletes and others with joint health concerns, such as people living with Lyme disease, or by people interested in healing their digestive systems.
For some people, supplementing with collagen can lead to unpleasant symptoms like bloating or heartburn. However, there are no known side effects of collagen supplementation that should cause much concern, unless you’re allergic to beef products.
If you experience any rash-like symptoms after taking collagen, such as hives or eczema, or if you feel any tingling or itching inside your mouth, stop using the product immediately and speak to your doctor as these could be indications of an allergy.
Collagen At Trader Joe’s
Trader Joe’s first released a powdered collagen product in 2018, with their Great Lakes Gelatin Collagen Hydrolysate.
In recent years, this product has gotten a packaging makeover and is now being sold as Great Lakes Wellness Quick Dissolve Collagen Peptides. It is still available at Trader Joe’s, but supplies vary by location. My local Trader Joe’s in Issaquah, Washington, for example, does not carry Great Lakes Collagen in 2023.
Each 7-oz container of this dietary supplement is available at select Trader Joe’s locations for $9.99, which is significantly less expensive than comparable products sold elsewhere.
Great Lakes Wellness Quick Dissolve Collagen Peptides
Each container of Great Lakes Collagen at Trader Joe’s contains 12 grams of collagen per serving and provides types I and III collagen.
Type I collagen is said to promote skin health while type III collagen is aimed at gut health and recovery. Type II collagen, which is not present in this Great Lakes product, is best at supporting joint health. According to NaturalForce.com, the best source of type II collagen is organic bone broth. You can check out our post about Trader Joe’s Bone Broth here.
Great Lakes Wellness Collagen is derived from pasture-raised cattle and is therefore not suitable for vegans or vegetarians. The cattle used to produce this collagen powder are grass-fed and harvested according to Kosher standards. Finally, Great Lakes Collagen is gluten free, non-GMO, and keto certified.
Trader Joe’s unfortunately does not sell any vegan collagen alternatives in their dietary supplement section. However, there are many vegan and vegetarian foods available at TJ’s that can function as rich sources of collagen.
Some vegan sources of collagen include…
- Leafy greens
- Soy protein
Reviews of Great Lakes Wellness Collagen Peptides
When it comes to price and quality, the collagen powder available at Trader Joe’s is hard to beat. It’s almost half the price of comparable collagen products from other suppliers, and it’s made from high quality beef raised in ideal conditions.
Some people have named Great Lakes Collagen among some of the only collagen products they like, citing its relieving lack of flavor when compared to similar products.
This Reddit user compared Great Lakes Wellness Collagen to Vital Proteins, saying they can’t tell the difference:
This user even said that they noticed an improvement in their nail health after supplementing with Great Lakes Collagen…
From other suppliers of Great Lakes Collagen, such as Walmart, VitaCost, and Pure Formulas, this collagen peptide powder holds consistently positive reviews, averaging between 4 and 5 stars based on customer feedback.