Category Archives: protein

50 Vanilla and Chocolate High Protein Smoothie Recipes

Making smoothies is the fastest, easiest way to get more protein.

Below you’ll find a list of 50 of our favorite healthy and tasty high-protein smoothie recipes (both chocolate and vanilla). You can substitute the protein powder below with your preferred source.

Pure Food currently offers plant-based protein and collagen … if you’re interested in high-quality whey isolate, contact us.

  1. Classic Strawberry Banana Smoothie
    • 1 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)
    • 1 ripe banana
    • 1/2 cup yogurt (Greek plain)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  2. Vanilla Berry Blast Smoothie (Strawberry, Blueberry, Raspberry)
    • 1/2 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)
    • 1/4 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
    • 1/4 cup raspberries (fresh or frozen)
    • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt (sugar free)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  3. Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie
  4. Blueberry Spinach Smoothie with Vanilla Yogurt
    • 1/2 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
    • Handful of spinach leaves
    • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt (sugar free)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  5. Chocolate Cherry Almond Smoothie
  6. Vanilla Mango Berry Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup mango chunks (fresh or frozen)
    • 1/4 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)
    • 1/4 cup raspberries (fresh or frozen)
    • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  7. Chocolate Raspberry Vanilla Smoothie
  8. Peanut Butter Banana Berry Collagen Smoothie
    • 1 ripe banana
    • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • 20 grams of collagen protein powder
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  9. Mixed Berry Yogurt Smoothie
  10. Vanilla Berry Protein Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  11. Chocolate Coconut Almond Smoothie
  12. Peach Vanilla Smoothie
  13. Chocolate Avocado Banana Smoothie
  14. Berry Medley Smoothie with Honey Drizzle
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
    • 20 grams of chocolate protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  15. Vanilla Blueberry Spinach Smoothie
  16. Chocolate Strawberry Banana Smoothie
  17. Very Berry Vanilla Yogurt Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt (sugar free)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  18. Chocolate Almond Butter Banana Smoothie
  19. Tropical Vanilla Smoothie (Mango, Pineapple, Banana)
    • 1/2 cup mango chunks (fresh or frozen)
    • 1/4 cup pineapple chunks (fresh or frozen)
    • 1/2 ripe banana
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  20. Chocolate Peanut Butter Blueberry Smoothie
  21. Vanilla Mixed Berry Smoothie
  22. Chocolate Spinach Banana Smoothie
  23. Raspberry Vanilla Yogurt Smoothie
  24. Chocolate Coconut Banana Smoothie
  25. Vanilla Peach Raspberry Smoothie
  26. Blueberry Chocolate Vanilla Smoothie
  27. Vanilla Berry Oatmeal Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 1/4 cup rolled oats
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  28. Chocolate Raspberry Greek Yogurt Smoothie
  29. Banana Berry Vanilla Smoothie
    • 1 ripe banana
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  30. Vanilla Green Smoothie (Spinach, Banana, Apple)
  31. Chocolate Cherry Vanilla Smoothie
  32. Mixed Berry Chocolate Protein Smoothie
  33. Vanilla Mango Banana Smoothie
  34. Chocolate Strawberry Spinach Smoothie
  35. Vanilla Berry Coconut Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 1/4 cup shredded coconut
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  36. Chocolate Raspberry Chia Smoothie
  37. Vanilla Pineapple Coconut Smoothie
  38. Blueberry Chocolate Almond Milk Smoothie
  39. Vanilla Raspberry Coconut Smoothie
  40. Chocolate Mixed Berry Protein Smoothie
  41. Vanilla Peach Banana Smoothie
  42. Chocolate Raspberry Coconut Smoothie
  43. Vanilla Strawberry Banana Smoothie
  44. Chocolate Cherry Vanilla Almond Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup cherries (fresh or frozen)
    • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 1 tablespoon almond butter
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  45. Mixed Berry Vanilla Yogurt Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt (sugar free)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  46. Chocolate Avocado Vanilla Smoothie
  47. Vanilla Orange Berry Smoothie
    • 1/2 orange, peeled and segmented
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  48. Chocolate Banana Berry Smoothie
  49. Vanilla Berry Spinach Smoothie
    • Handful of spinach leaves
    • 1/2 cup mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
    • 20 grams of vanilla protein powder
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)
  50. Chocolate Raspberry Vanilla Greek Yogurt Smoothie
    • 1/2 cup raspberries (fresh or frozen)
    • 20 grams of chocolate protein powder
    • tablespoon cocoa powder
    • 1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt (sugar free)
    • 2 cups of milk, plant milk, or water
    • Ice cubes (optional)

To Maximize Muscle Protein Synthesis (MPS) After 40, Do This

Once you hit your 40s, your muscles begin to naturally shrink and you become less efficient at turning protein into muscle.

This causes many adults to turn to rapid weight loss diets, which absolutely destroy your body composition and your metabolism because 30 – 40% of the lost weight will come from lean tissue (muscle).

Here’s how to maximize muscle protein synthesis (MPS) after 40:

Eat at least 30-40 grams of protein your first meal of the day

The average American eats about 12 grams of protein at breakfast, which is inadequate to enter an anabolic state. In other words, the protein here gives you nothing but calories–you get no improvements in body composition from eating it.

Aim for at least 30 grams of protein with each ensuing meal

You need about 2.5 grams of the amino acid leucine per meal to stimulate muscle protein synthesis, which equals around 30 grams of protein. Until you get enough leucine, protein synthesis won’t run at 100%. This results in a lack of adequate protein, leaving you in a catabolic state, where lean tissue is broken down.

Drink twice as much water

If you shift to a higher-protein diet, you should drink 50% more water than you were drinking before. Protein is hygroscopic, which means it attracts water like iron filings to a magnet.

Don’t drink alcohol on days you lift

Alcohol devastates your body’s ability to regenerate and repair muscle and get it ready for a subsequent workout. Regularly consuming more than one or two drinks a day is not recommended if you’re trying to maximize muscle protein synthesis and lose weight/gain muscle.

End the day with a high-protein meal

People who consume protein prior to sleep see a greater increase in muscle mass and strength. Try a high-protein meal with at least 30-40 grams of protein as your last meal of the day. But watch the sugary, carb-laden snacks. Stick with sugar-free protein shakes, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, nuts, and seeds.


✓ Eat at least 30-40 grams of protein with each meal

✓ Drink twice as much water

✓ Don’t drink alcohol on days you lift

How Much Protein Can You Really Absorb in One Meal?

how much protein study

A new study published in late 2023 called “The anabolic response to protein ingestion during recovery from exercise has no upper limit in magnitude and duration in vivo in humans” concluded that ingestion of 100 g protein resulted in a greater and more prolonged (>12 h) anabolic response when compared to the ingestion of 25 g protein.

However, several key questions remain:

1. How does consuming 100g of protein compare to 40, 45, or 50g? The study only measured 100g vs 25g.

2. What are the effects of consuming 100g of protein in trained vs. untrained individuals? This study assessed the muscle protein synthesis (MPS) response after a resistance training session in untrained subjects. As Layne Norton, Ph.D. explains, “The protein turnover response in untrained subjects is massive & creates a huge demand for tissue remodeling. This allows for greater utilization of exogenous amino acids.”

3. What are the MPS effects of consuming 100g of other protein sources? This study only measured 80% casein (milk protein), which is a slower-digesting protein and has a much different anabolic response than other sources.

Protein researcher Dr. Don Layman and Dr. Gabrielle Lyon did a review of the study here:  

Dr. Layman told me that they also have an upcoming discussion with the study author coming out soon. 

Here’s my takeaway:

Is the study intriguing?


Should it make us question conventional wisdom about how much protein we can absorb in a sitting?


But let’s not jump to conclusions without thinking critically and understanding that there are still many unanswered questions here.

Optimal protein intake to lose fat and build muscle, according to science

how much protein do adults need

There’s one thing nearly all older adults have in common: a way-too-low daily protein intake.

The benefits of protein are no secret.

Protein helps with:

1. Muscle Building and Maintenance

2. Weight Management

3. Improved Athletic Performance

4. Aiding Muscle Recovery

5. Preservation of Muscle Mass

6. Metabolic Health

So, what’s the optimal amount of protein you should be eating each day?

It depends on your goals and current body composition. Physically active adults can optimize and maintain body composition, performance, and recovery with a daily protein intake of 1.4–2.0 g/kg (0.64–0.91 g/lb), with a preference toward the upper end of this range.

The most comprehensive meta-analysis to date on the effects of protein supplementation on muscle mass and strength found that the average amount of protein required to maximize lean mass is about 1.6 g/kg, and some people need upwards of 2.2 g/kg.

To optimize muscle gain, active adults should shoot for a daily protein intake of 1.6–2.4 g/kg (0.73–1.10 g/lb). To lose fat, active adults who are already lean may maximize fat loss and muscle retention with a daily protein intake of 1.6–2.4 g/kg (0.73–1.10 g/lb).

People who are overweight or obese should consume at least 1.2–1.5 g/kg (0.54–0.68 g/lb) … and I advocate for even higher than this because considering the health risks associated with overweightness and obesity, eating a diet higher in protein significantly reduces several cardiometabolic risk factors, including waist circumference, blood pressure, and triglycerides, while also increasing satiety.

Higher protein consumption also has a thermic effect on metabolism, meaning our bodies use more energy to process protein compared to fats and carbohydrates.

Long story short, most people would benefit from eating .75 – 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight per day.

If you’re struggling with your protein intake and need some help, then protein powder like Pure Food can be a huge asset!


Thomas DT, Erdman KA, Burke LM. American College of Sports Medicine Joint Position Statement. Nutrition and Athletic Performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc (2016 Mar)

Jäger R, et al. International Society of Sports Nutrition Position Stand: protein and exercise. J Int Soc Sports Nutr (2017 Jun 20)

Morton RW, et al. A systematic review, meta-analysis and meta-regression of the effect of protein supplementation on resistance training-induced gains in muscle mass and strength in healthy adults. Br J Sports Med (2018 Mar)

Antonio J, et al. The effects of consuming a high protein diet (4.4 g/kg/d) on body composition in resistance-trained individuals. J Int Soc Sports Nutr (2014 May 12)

Kim JE, et al. Effects of dietary protein intake on body composition changes after weight loss in older adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Nutr Rev (2016 Mar)

Bovine Collagen Peptides: Uses, Types, Benefits

types and benefits of bovine collagen peptides

Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies, acting as the building block for skin, tendons, ligaments, and many other tissue types. Think of it as the glue that holds everything together.

There are a multitude of different types, uses, and benefits of collagen. In this article, we will focus on bovine collagen peptides. You’ll learn what they are, where they come from, the differences between bovine and other types of collagen, potential benefits, side effects, and more.

Here are the sections in this article … click/tap to navigate:

What are Collagen Peptides and How Do They Differ From Regular Collagen?

Collagen “peptides” are simply broken-down collagen molecules (which our bodies digest and absorb better).

Regular collagen is like that thick novel you’ve been meaning to read. Collagen peptides, on the other hand, are like its summarized, Clif’s Notes version.

Because of their smaller structure, peptides get absorbed more efficiently and get to work faster.

Comparing Bovine Collagen to Other Sources (Marine, Chicken, Vegan)

Bovine Collagen Origin, Types, Pros and Cons

  • Origin: Derived from the skin and bones of cows.
  • Primary Types: Mainly contains Type I and Type III collagen (more on this below).
  • Pros: Closest to human collagen. Supports skin elasticity, joint health, and overall body structure.
  • Cons: Those who have concerns about the ethics and sustainability of animal farming might steer clear.

Marine Collagen Origin, Types, Pros and Cons

  • Origin: Sourced from the skin and scales of fish, especially from species like cod or snapper.
  • Primary Types: Primarily contains Type I collagen.
  • Pros: Known for enhancing skin hydration and reducing wrinkles. High bioavailability and absorption rates.
  • Cons: Fishy aftertaste. Might not be ideal for those with fish allergies. Not ideal for mixing with most drinks because of the strong taste. Typically more expensive than other types.

Chicken Collagen Origin, Types, Pros and Cons

  • Origin: Extracted from the cartilage of chickens.
  • Primary Types: Predominantly Type II collagen.
  • Pros: Good for joint health, and especially noted for its support in conditions like arthritis.
  • Cons: More specialized; might not provide the broader benefits of Type I and Type III collagen from bovine sources.

Plant-Based / Vegan Collagen Boosters Origin, Types, Pros and Cons

  • Origin: Derived from ingredients like seaweed, wheat, soy, or various genetically modified yeasts and bacteria.
  • How It Works: Instead of providing actual collagen, these sources offer the necessary amino acids and nutrients that stimulate the body’s own collagen production.
  • Pros: 100% vegan and vegetarian-friendly. May also contain other beneficial plant-derived nutrients.
  • Cons: Not actually collagen but a “booster” that may help the body to produce more (although this has not been proven). Might not have the immediate efficacy of animal-derived collagen supplements.

Types of Bovine Collagen: What’s the Difference?

Bovine collagen mainly consists of Type I and Type III collagen, with Type II playing a cameo. Let’s unpack each of these …

Type I Collagen

The superstar of the collagen world, Type I makes up a whopping 90% of your body’s collagen.

  • Found in organs, skin, tendons, and more.
  • Highly associated with providing skin its structure. Hence, it’s the go-to for anti-aging, skin elasticity, and hydration.
  • It’s the strongest type, meaning it works superbly for maintaining the health of your tendons, organs, and bones.
  • Requires the support of other collagen types to ensure comprehensive health benefits.

Type II Collagen

Often sourced from poultry (chicken cartilage), it plays a smaller role in bovine collagen products.

  • Found predominantly in cartilage.
  • Has shown potential in aiding arthritis symptoms.
  • Primary benefit is for joint health, meaning it doesn’t have the broad spectrum of benefits that some other collagen types offer.
  • More often found in chicken sources, making it less prevalent in bovine collagen supplements.

Type III Collagen

The Robin to Type I’s Batman, Type III is the second most abundant collagen in the human body.

  • Supports the structure of muscles, organs, and arteries, promoting overall youthful vitality.
  • Often found alongside Type I, enhancing the benefits of both.
  • Rarely found in isolation and often needs the presence of Type I to function optimally.

How Bovine Collagen Peptides Are Made: Why Hydrolyzed Matters

Hydrolyzed collagen is collagen that has been broken down into smaller, more digestible pieces by a process called hydrolysis. The main benefit of hydrolysis is it makes it easier for our bodies to absorb the collagen.

  1. Raw Material Collection: It all starts with the collection of bovine parts, predominantly leftover “waste” products like hides, bones, etc. These are rich in collagen but not in the form your body can easily digest.
  2. Cleaning & Preparation: The collected materials are cleaned with a lime-alkaline solution to remove non-collagenous compounds.
  3. Extraction: The cleaned materials undergo a hot water extraction process. Here, the heat causes the collagen to turn into a gelatin-like substance.
  4. Enzymatic Hydrolysis: Here’s where the magic happens. The extracted gelatin is then introduced to specific enzymes that break the protein down into smaller chains of amino acids, aka peptides.
  5. Purification: The hydrolyzed mixture is then purified to remove any unwanted substances, ensuring you’re getting the purest form of collagen peptides.
  6. Drying & Milling: Once purified, the mixture is dried, often using a process called “spray drying.” After drying, it’s milled into a fine powder, ensuring easy mixability when you use it.

The Health Benefits of Bovine Collagen Peptides

Let’s touch on some of the main benefits of collagen now.

  1. Skin Health: Elasticity, Hydration, and Aging. Regular bovine collagen intake can boost skin elasticity, hydration, and even help reduce the appearance of those pesky fine lines and wrinkles.
  2. Joint Health: Arthritis, Pain, and Cartilage Support. Creaky knees and painful elbows? Bovine collagen offers support to our joints, reducing the symptoms of arthritis and other joint disorders.
  3. Bone Health: Density and Strength. Keep your bones robust and healthy as you age with a dash of bovine collagen in your daily routine (try a scoop or two in your morning coffee or tea).
  4. Muscle Mass and Athletic Performance. Looking to add lean muscle or enhance your athletic performance? Bovine collagen peptides make a great addition to your protein shakes.
  5. Gut Health and the Connection to the Microbiome. An unhappy gut is a precursor to many health issues. Collagen can play a role in strengthening the gut lining, promoting a healthier digestive system.

Potential Side Effects or Considerations

Bovine collagen peptides are largely beneficial for most people. However, there are a few potential side effects and considerations for a small number of folks:

  1. GI Issues: Some people might experience minor digestive disturbances when they first start consuming bovine collagen. This can include feelings of fullness, bloating, or a change in bowel habits. Most of the time, these symptoms are temporary and can be reduced by starting with a smaller dosage and gradually increasing to the recommended amount. A probiotic supplement can also help.
  2. Allergic Reactions: Though rare, it’s possible for someone to have an allergic reaction to bovine collagen. Symptoms might include itching, rash, or swelling. If you suspect an allergy, stop taking the supplement and consult with a healthcare professional.
  3. Taste and Odor Sensitivity: Some people might detect a particular taste or smell from certain brands of bovine collagen, especially if it’s unflavored. This isn’t a side effect in the traditional sense, but it can affect the palatability and overall experience of consuming the product. Try a few different brands if you notice a weird taste in yours.
  4. Interaction with Medications: It’s always wise to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement, including bovine collagen. This is especially important if you’re on medications, as there can be potential interactions.

How to Choose a Quality Bovine Collagen Supplement

When considering a bovine collagen supplement, here are our best tips:

  1. Look for a product with Type I and Type III collagen, given their complementary roles.
  2. Taste (or lack thereof) matters. Unflavored bovine collagen should not have a strong smell or taste.
  3. Mixability also matters. If your collagen forms large, gelatinous clumps, then that is definitely not an ideal experience.
  4. Make sure your brand is third party tested and manufactured in a GMP-certified facility.

How to Incorporate Bovine Collagen Peptides into Your Diet

Bovine collagen peptides are one of the most versatile protein sources. The neutral taste of most bovine collagen powders ensures that you get the health benefits without compromising the flavors of your favorite dishes.

Here are some ways you can use bovine collagen peptides:

  1. Beverages:
    • Coffee: Stirring bovine collagen into your morning coffee is a popular way to start the day. It dissolves easily, doesn’t alter the taste, and provides an early protein boost.
    • Tea: Prefer tea? Whether it’s green, black, or herbal, a scoop of collagen can seamlessly blend in.
    • Other Chilled Drinks: From iced lattes to refreshing lemonades, collagen peptides can be mixed into cold drinks. However, ensure you mix well as some brands clump more than others and might need a bit more stirring or blending in colder temperatures.
  2. Smoothies:
    • Protein Boost: Upgrade your post-workout smoothie by adding a serving of collagen peptides. Not only does it ramp up the protein content, but it also supports muscle recovery.
    • Flavor Neutrality (or Flexibility): With both flavored and unflavored collagen options available, you can either complement your smoothie’s natural taste or give it a new twist!
  3. Cooking:
    • Protein Pancakes: Give your morning pancakes a nutritional upgrade. By adding collagen into the batter, you can enjoy a protein-packed breakfast that keeps you satiated longer.
    • Soup & Stews: Collagen can act as a thickening agent. Next time you make a soup or stew, add a scoop for added texture and health benefits.
    • Baked Delights: Whether you’re baking bread, muffins, or cookies, incorporating collagen peptides ensures you’re getting a protein boost with every bite.
    • Savory Dishes: Don’t limit collagen to just sweets and drinks. Mix it into your pasta sauces, casseroles, or even sprinkle some on your salad dressings.
  4. Dosage and Frequency:

While a typical serving size provides about 10 grams of collagen and 9 grams of protein, it’s always best to refer to the brand’s recommendation.

Like any health habit, consistency is key to reap the full benefits, so find ways to make it a seamless part of your daily routine.

Best Bovine Collagen Brands: Pros and Cons

Before you plunge into the world of bovine collagen, remember: not all collagen brands are created equal. Sure, they might all glisten under the fluorescent store lights, but the quality, source, and additional ingredients can wildly differ.

That’s why it’s essential to read those labels, do your homework, and ensure you’re getting the crème de la crème of bovine collagen peptides. Let’s weigh the pros and cons of some of the most talked-about brands in the market, shall we?

Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides


  • Sourced from grass-fed, pasture-raised bovine.
  • No added preservatives or artificial ingredients.
  • Highly soluble and mixes well with beverages.


  • Slightly pricier compared to other brands.
  • Packaging might not be fully sustainable.
  • Some users report a mild aftertaste.

Live Conscious Collagen Peptides


  • Ensures high-quality and purity with third-party testing.
  • Offers a satisfaction guarantee for its users.
  • Transparent about their sourcing and processing.


  • Limited flavor options.
  • Some users might find the powder consistency less mixable.


Purely Inspired Collagen Peptides


  • Enhanced with Biotin for added skin, hair, and nail benefits.
  • Affordable price point.
  • Easy-to-use serving scoops included.


  • Sources of collagen aren’t exclusively bovine.
  • Some users might prefer pure collagen without added vitamins.

Orgain Collagen Peptides


  • Gluten-free, soy-free, and dairy-free.
  • Known for clean nutrition products and good brand reputation.
  • Easily found in many physical stores.


  • Some users report a slightly gritty texture.
  • Unclear which country it’s sourced from.

Native Path Collagen Peptides


  • Non-GMO and free from common allergens.
  • Contains Type I and III collagen.
  • Positive customer testimonials about skin and joint benefits.


  • Limited distribution in physical stores.
  • Some customers find it less soluble in cold beverages.

Sports Research Collagen Peptides


  • Certified Paleo-friendly and Keto-certified.
  • Sourced from grass-fed, pasture-raised bovine.
  • Offers a variety of product sizes.


  • Only available in unflavored variant.
  • Some users report clumping in cold liquids.

Ancient Nutrition / Dr. Axe Collagen Peptides


  • Formulated with multiple collagen types.
  • Clean ingredient sourcing.
  • Contains additional beneficial ingredients like probiotics.


  • Priced on the higher end of the spectrum.
  • Might have a stronger taste compared to other pure collagen peptides.

Great Lakes Collagen


  • Grass-fed, pasture-raised bovine.
  • Hydrolyzed collagen is easier to digest and absorb.
  • No added preservatives or artificial ingredients.


  • A small subset of users report a distinct taste that they find unpalatable.
  • May not dissolve as well in colder liquids, causing a slightly grainy texture.


So, here we are at the end of our collagen journey. Are bovine collagen peptides a worthy contender to add to your supplement routine?

If so, our new product, Pure Food Collagen Peptides, is coming your way soon!

Our collagen powder is formulated using hydrolyzed bovine collagen, renowned for its exceptional bioavailability.

And unlike many collagen powders on the market, Pure Food Collagen Peptides Powder dissolves instantly in both hot and cold beverages and is completely odorless and tasteless. No unpleasant odors or overpowering flavors. No grainy or chalky textures like other protein sources.

Get Pure Food Collagen here

Announcing New Pure Food Collagen Peptides Powder

pure foods collagen peptides powder

I have fantastic news to share with you! Our new product, Pure Food Collagen Peptides, is now available.

Our collagen powder is formulated using hydrolyzed bovine collagen, renowned for its exceptional bioavailability. This means that your body can absorb and utilize the collagen more effectively, maximizing its benefits, which include:

  1. Support skin health: Collagen is an essential protein in the skin, providing structure and helping maintain elasticity. Some studies suggest that collagen supplementation may improve skin hydration, elasticity, and reduce wrinkles. A study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food demonstrated improvements in skin elasticity and moisture content after collagen supplementation. [Source:]
  2. Improve joint, tendon, and ligament health: Collagen is a major component of cartilage, which cushions and supports joints. Research suggests that collagen supplementation may help reduce joint pain and improve joint function, particularly in people with osteoarthritis. A study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry showed that collagen supplementation improved symptoms and reduced pain in individuals with knee osteoarthritis. [Source:]
  3. Support hair and nail growth: Collagen contains amino acids that are important for hair and nail growth. A study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology reported that a specific collagen peptide improved hair thickness and strength. [Source:]
  4. Promoting gut health: Collagen contains amino acids, such as glycine and glutamine, which are important for maintaining a healthy gut lining and proper digestion. [Source: and]
  5. Aiding in weight management: Collagen is a satiating protein that can help you feel fuller for longer, potentially reducing cravings and supporting weight management efforts.
  6. Supporting athletic performance, lean muscle growth, and recovery: Collagen is an important component of muscle tissue and may play a role in muscle repair and recovery. [Source:]
  7. Supporting bone health: Collagen is a critical component of bones, providing structure and strength. Regular collagen intake may help maintain bone density and reduce the risk of age-related bone conditions. [Source:]

And unlike many collagen powders on the market, Pure Food Collagen Peptides Powder dissolves instantly in both hot and cold beverages and is completely odorless and tasteless. No more unpleasant odors or overpowering flavors. Simply mix it into your favorite drinks and enjoy a seamless collagen boost without compromising the taste or aroma of your beverage. Say goodbye to grainy or chalky textures like other protein sources and hello to a smooth, clump-free experience.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to be one of the first to experience our new product!

How to Get More Protein in Your Diet (Without Fat, Sugar, or Carbs)

protein powder benefits plant vs animal

Most people know that protein is a macronutrient that’s essential for maintaining good cellular health and building lean muscle. But protein also plays a role in hormone regulation, boosts brain function, and keeps your immune system healthy. So how can you get more protein in your diet without the unhealthy fats, sugars, and carbohydrates?

In this guide, we will show you why protein is important in a healthy diet, how much protein you need each day to maximize health benefits, and how to increase the amount of protein you consume each day–while avoiding unwanted fat, sugar, and carbs.

Why is protein important in a healthy diet?

Protein is an essential nutrient that our bodies need to function properly. Protein is found throughout the body—in muscle, bone, skin, hair, and virtually every other body part or tissue. You need protein in your diet to help your body repair cells and make new ones.

But, it can be difficult to get enough protein in your diet without consuming unhealthy levels of fat, sugar, or carbs.

What is the optimal amount of protein to eat each day?

We published an entire article about how much protein you need per day but the short answer is that most people are not getting enough protein in their diet. Current dietary guidelines recommend a modest 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight.

Protein researcher Don Layman, Ph.D., says that 1.2 – 1.8 g/kg is a better number to strive for when it comes to overall protein intake and that protein needs to comprise a larger percentage of your overall calories as you get older. 

A study published in the journal Nutrients recommended a protein intake between 1.2 and 2.0 g/kg/day for elderly adults, which is close to 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight.

How to increase the amount of protein in your daily diet (without excess sugar, fat, and carbs)

There are several strategies you can use to increase your daily protein intake.

First, you’ll want to start tracking the amount of protein you currently eat, so you have a baseline understanding of where you are vs. where you want to be. There are plenty of apps to help you do this. Just search for “calorie tracker” or “protein tracker” in any app store.

Planning ahead and cooking your own meals is one strategy you can use to ensure you’re getting the necessary amount of protein each day.

You should be eating roughly the same amount of protein in each meal (dinner is usually a little higher for most people).

So, for example, if you’re a 150-pound person looking to consume close to 1 gram per pound per day (so 150 grams of protein total), you’d want around 5 meals with 30 grams of protein each, or 4 meals with 35-40 grams of protein.

Taking small steps like adding extra protein to one or two meals a day is a great way to start making changes to your protein intake without getting overwhelmed.

Now, obviously many animal sources of protein (particularly beef and pork) can be higher in fat. Incorporating more plant-based proteins into your meal plan will help you to get more lean protein without excess fat. It can also reduce your risk of developing chronic illnesses.

Drinking protein shakes is an easy way to get more protein each day as well. Whether you choose animal or plant-based protein powders, make sure you’re looking at the nutrition label and picking one without added sugars, carbs, and fat. I recommend trying to look for products with shorter ingredients lists and no sugar.


No matter your dietary preferences, it’s important to make sure you are getting adequate protein in your diet.

Plant based proteins like legumes, nuts, seeds, and even plant protein powders offer plenty of advantages for overall health, especially if you can’t tolerate dairy products or don’t eat meat.

For some people, dairy products, eggs, and lean meats like fish, turkey, chicken, venison, and more can be easily incorporated for a healthy protein boost.

Taking the time to find the right combination of protein sources for you will help ensure that your body gets all the essential nutrients it needs to stay healthy.

Protein: When and How Much Do You Need Each Day and Each Meal?

How Much Protein Should You Eat Each Day?

If you’re following the current dietary recommendations, then chances are you’re not getting enough protein. That’s a big problem because we lose 3–8% of muscle mass per decade starting at age 30 and the rate of decline is even higher after the age of 60.

In this article, you’ll learn:

i.) the bare minimum amount of protein you should be eating each day,

ii.) how much protein your body can absorb each meal,

iii.) the best time to drink your protein shakes, and

iv.) the number of grams of protein per day you should be eating if your goal is to build muscle and lose fat.

Why do we need protein?

Protein is found in muscle, bone, skin, hair, and virtually every other body part, tissue, and cell. It makes up the enzymes and hormones that power many chemical reactions, the hemoglobin that carries oxygen in your blood, and the amino acids needed to build and repair muscle and bones.

At least 10,000 different proteins are responsible for making you what you are and keeping you that way.

Bottom line: proteins are an essential part of all living organisms and form the basis of living cells, muscle and tissues, so it’s vitally important to ensure your cells are getting enough to maximize muscle protein synthesis (MPS).

How much protein do you need each day?

Your daily protein requirements depend on several factors:

how much protein do you need each day

1. How much muscle you currently have. The more muscular you are, the more amino acids your body needs to maintain your current body composition levels.

2. Your activity level. The more you exercise, the more protein your body needs.

3. Your age. The older you get, the more protein your body needs to maintain muscle.

4. Your hormones. If your body has high levels of growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), it will use protein more efficiently than someone with low levels. These hormones decrease as you age, which is one of the reasons why older adults need more protein.

Current Dietary Protein Guidelines

The current recommendation based on the 2020 – 2025 Dietary Guidelines and National Academy of Medicine for protein intake is 0.8 g/kg (or around 0.36 g/lb) of body mass in generally healthy adults.

That’s around 50 grams per day for the average adult.

However, this probably isn’t enough for most of you reading this. According to a 2019 paper published in the scientific journal Nutrients called Dietary Protein and Muscle Mass: Translating Science to Application and Health Benefit:

The current protein RDA, however, is often incorrectly applied when used as the definition of recommended intake, rather than its true designation as the required minimum intake.

How Much Protein Should You Eat Each Day? 

Protein researcher Don Layman, Ph.D., says that 1.2 – 1.8 g/kg is a better number to strive for when it comes to overall protein intake and that protein needs to be a higher percentage of your overall calories as you age (jump to the section at 43:03 “Is the Protein RDA Sufficient” in the video below).

Protein Requirements for Older Adults and Elderly to Optimize Muscle Protein Synthesis

According to a 2015 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition called “Defining meal requirements for protein to optimize metabolic roles of amino acids”:

Research suggests daily needs for older adults of ≥1.0 g/kg and identifies anabolic and metabolic benefits to consuming at least 20-30 g protein at a given meal.

A 2016 paper published in the journal Nutrients recommended a protein intake between 1.2 and 2.0 g/kg/day for elderly adults, which is close to 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight.

How much protein can you eat and absorb at one time?

A 2018 study from Brad Schoenfeld and Alan Aragon published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition found that 0.55 g/kg/meal would be around the upper limit most people can absorb, which translates to 35-45 grams of protein for the average person per meal.

Here’s a good overview from protein scientist Don Layman on Peter Attia, M.D.’s podcast (jump to the section at 1:20:02 “Muscle protein synthesis: ideal timing, small meals vs. big meals, and more”):

When should I drink a protein shake for best results: pre- or post-workout?

You may have heard that you need to ingest protein immediately before or after a workout.

However, in a 2013 study called “Nutrient timing revisited: is there a post-exercise anabolic window?”, the research team had this to say:

Despite claims that immediate post-exercise nutritional intake is essential to maximize hypertrophic gains, evidence-based support for such an “anabolic window of opportunity” is far from definitive.

Here is the position of the International Society of Sports Nutrition (ISSN):

  1. Meeting the total daily intake of protein, preferably with evenly spaced protein feedings (approximately every 3 hours during the day), should be viewed as a primary area of emphasis for exercising individuals.
  2. Ingesting a 20-40 gram protein dose (0.25-0.40 g/kg body mass/dose) of a high-quality source every three to 4 hours appears to most favorably affect muscle protein synthesis (MPS) rates when compared to other dietary patterns and is associated with improved body composition and performance outcomes.
  3. Post-exercise ingestion (immediately to 2-hours post) of high-quality protein sources stimulates robust increases in MPS.

A 2017 study called Pre- versus post-exercise protein intake has similar effects on muscular adaptations concluded the following:

Pre- and post-workout protein consumption had similar effects on all measures studied. These findings refute the contention of a narrow post-exercise anabolic window to maximize the muscular response and instead lends support to the theory that the interval for protein intake may be as wide as several hours or perhaps more after a training bout depending on when the pre-workout meal was consumed.

How much protein is needed in grams per day to build muscle?

How much protein is needed to build muscle?A 2018 study called “Recent Perspectives Regarding the Role of Dietary Protein for the Promotion of Muscle Hypertrophy with Resistance Exercise Training” found that to grow or build new muscle, daily protein intakes should be:

1.6 g/kg/day – 2.2 g/kg/day.

In other words,

~1 gram of protein per pound of body weight per day is optimal for gaining muscle.


To improve or maintain your current body composition, aim for at least 1.2 – 1.8 g/kg of body weight (or 1 gram per pound if you’re an older adult, avid exerciser, and/or want to lose weight) with 30-40 grams of protein each meal spread out every 3-4 hours.

If you’re looking to boost your protein intake quickly and efficiently, try Pure Food Protein Powder.

Protein Powder 101: Benefits, Risks, Sources & Amount Needed

protein powder benefits plant vs animal

Even mentioning the words protein powder can stir up heated debates among doctors, nutritionists, athletes, vegan/vegetarians, and everyone in between.

In this article, we’ll dispel the myths and misconceptions … and break down the latest and greatest science of protein powder.

We’ll answer your most common questions, including:

  • What exactly is protein powder?
  • How is it made?
  • What are the different types of protein powders?
  • How much protein do you need?
  • How/when should you consume protein powders for optimal health?
  • What are the risks and benefits plant based protein powder vs. animal protein powders like whey, collagen, etc.?
  • How do you choose the best one for you?

Without further ado, let us begin …

What Is Protein Powder?

Proteins are organic molecules made up of amino acids (the building blocks of life). Protein helps build, maintain, and replace the tissues in your body. Your muscles, organs, and immune system are made up mostly of protein.

Protein powder is a powdered form of protein made from plant-based or animal sources.

What Happens When You Eat Protein

When you eat protein, your stomach uses its acid and enzymes to break it down into those “building blocks” we talked about (amino acids).

what are bcaasThe most important of the amino acids for building lean muscle and losing fat are called BCAAs, or Branched Chain Amino Acids.

Together, the three BCAAs (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) account for as much as 33% of muscle tissue. Here’s a brief overview of each: 

  1. Leucine is a branched chain amino acid that helps your body synthesize protein.
  2. Isoleucine is a BCAA that can help your body regulate blood sugar levels and ensure your muscle cells are metabolizing sugar (instead of fat cells).
  3. Valine is the least important BCAA for body composition (it’s also the least-studied).

Protein powders can come from plant or animal sources, each having a different make-up of amino acids.

Different Types of Protein Powders (and Their Benefits and Risks)

There’s some intriguing science about the most common types of protein powder sources that we’ll explore a bit further …

Benefits and Risks of Whey Protein Powder

plant vs animal protein powderAs mentioned, whey protein has been studied more than any other protein powder. A quick search of “whey protein powder” on PubMed brings up close to 600 studies to date.

While you can certainly find studies like this one that showed no link between whey protein and body composition, the overall body of evidence seems to suggest that whey works for building muscle. 

A meta analysis (a review of a group of studies) published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition looked at 14 clinical studies including a total of 626 adults and concluded that whey protein powder has favorable effects on body composition (and is even more effective when combined with resistance training).

However, there may be some side effects associated with whey protein, particularly on kidney and liver function and for those with sensitivities and allergies to dairy.

Benefits and Risks of Casein Protein

Casein is a slower digesting form of milk-based protein.

When it comes to the effectiveness of casein vs whey protein, one study showed that casein did not have any noticeable differences on body composition, strength, and power and agility compared to whey.

Casein has a few flaws as a protein source too. One study found that it promotes the growth of prostate cancer cells.  And since it’s milk-based, it’s not a good choice if you’re sensitive to dairy.

Benefits and Risks of Brown Rice Protein Powder

brown rice protein woman weight lossRice protein is a plant-based protein powder used by vegans, vegetarians, and people who can’t tolerate dairy products like whey and casein. In one study published in the journal Nutrition, researchers found that rice protein had similar effects on body composition as whey.

In other words, there was no difference between the group of subjects that took rice protein and the one that took whey protein; both experienced positive body composition changes.

One of the main complaints you’ll hear about rice protein is it’s high in potentially toxic heavy metals like arsenic, lead, cadmium, and mercury.

While it’s true consuming high amounts of some of these metals can lead to negative health effects, heavy metals are in all plants that grow in soil. Here’s a quote from Jon Barron’s research article on the topic:

In summary, don’t have a knee jerk reaction to the label “heavy metals.” (Both calcium and iron are technically heavy metals.) Yes, obviously, when it comes to “toxic” heavy metals, less is better than more. But the issue is far more nuanced than a simple label–or even numbers on a chart for that matter. You have to factor in whether or not the element actually has any “proven” toxicity (tungsten has no demonstrated toxicity), whether it’s organic or inorganic (organic arsenic is virtually ignored by the body), and whether it’s bound or unbound (bound cadmium has only 2-6% absorbability).

Yes, plant-based protein powders contain higher levels of heavy metals than animal proteins. But it’s important to understand how these heavy metals actually get absorbed in your body before jumping to conclusions.

That’s why it’s up to you as the consumer to ask the manufacturer of your protein powder what their heavy metal contents are, especially if they use rice protein (if they won’t share those numbers, it’s a big red flag).

And choose a rice protein from organic brown rice sourced outside of China to avoid ingesting potential chemical pesticides and herbicides.

Benefits and Risks of Pea Protein

benefits of plant based protein powderPea protein is another popular plant-based source of protein. It’s becoming increasingly prevalent in vegetarian / vegan / dairy free powders for several reasons:

  1. It’s a “complete” protein source that contains an impressive BCAA profile.
  2. Pea protein powder is among the most hypoallergenic of all protein powders, as it contains no gluten or dairy.
  3. It’s easy on the gut and doesn’t cause bloating, a common side effect of many other protein powders from animal sources.
  4. It has been shown in small studies to have similar effects to whey protein on body composition.
  5. Pea protein has a PDCAA (digestible indispensable amino acid score) of .89 (whey is 1). When combined with rice, hemp, and/or soy in certain combinations, you can get this number to 1.0–the same as whey!

While pea protein hasn’t been studied as much as whey or soy, it is a promising protein source for those looking for alternatives to dairy proteins. Again, organic pea protein is always a safer choice because you’re ingesting less pesticides.

Benefits and Risks of Soy Protein Powder

Soy protein is another popular plant-based protein powder. Most men should avoid it because it contains isoflavones and phytoestrogens that share similarities with estrogen.

It’s often extracted using hexane, a petroleum-based solvent … and most soy comes from genetically modified (GMO) soybeans.

However, according to several studies, soy protein may have body composition benefits for older women.

One study showed that a daily supplement of soy protein prevented increases in subcutaneous and total abdominal fat in older women. Another showed soy protein had a mild effect on body composition in elderly women.

One caveat: whey has been shown to be more effective than soy for improving lean body mass when combined with resistance training. So if lean body mass is your goal, you may want to consider other protein sources than soy if you’re using a protein powder.

How Is Protein Powder Made?

Protein powder processing methods depend on the type of protein and the company making it.

Whey Protein Processing

how is whey protein madeMost commercial whey protein powders are made using a high-heat, acid-flushed, “ion exchange” process to separate the whey from the cow’s milk. This can strip away vital nutrients.

So why do companies use it?

Because processing protein with acids is cheaper, of course.

If you decide a whey protein supplement is best for you, I recommend choosing one that’s from grass-fed cows, cold processed, and has zero sugar and as few ingredients as possible.

What if you can’t tolerate milk-based products or prefer plant-based protein powders though?

Plant Based Protein Processing

Many of the supposedly-healthy plant proteins used in supplements and packaged foods today are processed using hexane, a petroleum-based neurotoxin. Using hexane is an efficient and highly profitable way for food manufacturers to remove oil from plants and separate the protein.

If you decide a plant protein powder is a better option for you, look for plant-based protein powders that are organic and “enzymatically sprouted,” which means all-natural enzymes are used rather than chemicals to separate the protein from the plant.

Also, sprouting grains used in plant-based powders (e.g., rice, pea, amaranth) increases many of the plants’ key nutrients, including B vitamins, vitamin C, folate, fiber, and essential amino acids often lacking in grains, such as lysine. Sprouted grains may also be less allergenic to those with grain sensitivities.

Who Should Take Protein Powder?

protein powder benefitsProtein powders are not just for gym rats. In fact, most people could stand to get more protein in their diets. Here’s why:

  1. For healthy adults, low protein diets can lead to weight gain and increased fat mass.
  2. Eating more protein can help increase levels of the hormone glucagon, which helps control body fat.
  3. Eating protein can help strengthen bones as you age.

Adding protein powders to your daily regimen is an easy way to get more protein in your diet.

So How Much Protein Do You Need to Achieve Maximum Benefits?

It depends on several factors:

  1. How much muscle you currently have. The more muscular you are, the more amino acids your body needs to maintain your current body composition. If you don’t know your body composition and want to make real, measurable improvements to your health, go see a personal trainer who offers body composition analysis so you can get a “baseline” of where you’re currently at.
  2. Your activity level. The more you move, the more protein your body needs.
  3. Your age. The older you get, the more protein your body needs to maintain its muscle.
  4. Your hormones. If your body has high levels of growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), it will use protein more efficiently than someone with low levels. These hormones decrease as you age, which is one of the reasons why older adults need more protein.

So back to the original question: how much protein do you need? 

The current recommendation for protein intake is 0.8 grams per kilogram (or around 0.36 grams per pound) of body mass in generally healthy adults.

However, this protein intake recommendation is only to prevent protein deficiency and maintain nitrogen balance in the body (a negative nitrogen balance indicates that muscle is being broken down and used for energy).

It’s not necessarily optimal.

Studies show that athletes, active people, and older individuals may require even more protein (1.4 – 2.0 g/kg of body weight).

does protein powder workIn a study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, researchers compared muscle development in three groups of athletes on the same exercise routine but with different protein intake levels.

One group was given 1.4g/kg of body weight, the second group received 1.8g/kg of body weight, and the third group got 2.0g/kg of body weight.

The researchers found that 1.8 grams per kilogram of body weight was sufficient to see favorable changes in body composition in athletes.

Non-athletes and particularly older adults need at least 0.8 g/kg per day to help preserve current levels of muscle (or “lean body”) mass.

This is the bare minimum though.

Most health experts who have studied protein extensively recommend closer to 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight each day for most people.

For further reading, see our article How Much Protein Do You Need Each Day?

When Should I Take Protein Powder for the Most Benefit–Before or After a Workout?

If your goal is to lose body fat and increase lean body mass (muscle), then the answer is both.

In a study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, researchers concluded the following:

High-quality protein dosed at 0.4–0.5 g/kg of LBM at both pre- and post-exercise is a simple, relatively fail-safe general guideline that reflects the current evidence showing a maximal acute anabolic effect of 20–40 g

That’s 27-34 grams of protein both before and after a workout for a 150-pound adult.

Couple other interesting things the study authors noted:

  1. Despite claims that you need to take protein immediately (within 1 hour) after a workout to maximize gains, evidence-based support for such an “anabolic window of opportunity” is far from definitive.
  2. Even minimal-to-moderate pre-exercise high-quality protein taken immediately before resistance training is capable of sustaining amino acid delivery into the post-exercise period. In other words, eating protein before your workout may have more impact.

Long story short, eat a little protein before and after a workout if building muscle and/or losing body fat is your goal.

What Is the Best Protein Powder?

“Best” is an ambiguous term. The best protein supplement for you depends on your age, your health goals, and a number of other factors.

Here are a few common things to consider:

  • What protein powders get absorbed by your body best?
  • What are the benefits and risks of all the ingredients in your protein powder?
  • What protein powders do not cause digestive distress (gas, bloating, etc.) when you take them?
  • What type of protein is best for your unique health needs (losing muscle, building fat, etc.)?

I personally make a big shake with a variety of protein powders (80-100 grams total) and will split it up into two or three shakes that I’ll drink at various points throughout the day.

The criteria I use to select protein powders is quite simple:

  • Natural, USA-sourced ingredients I can pronounce
  • No added sugar or other junk
  • Reasonable cost per gram of protein

Pure Food is one of the few powders that meets these standards.

Choosing a protein powder is a highly personal decision though.

For most people, the potential benefits of protein powder outweigh the risks if your diet is lacking in protein and/or you want to improve your body composition.