Collagen and Type 1

A member in a Facebook group I’m in recently referenced that they have found taking collage “helps their blood sugar”. It wasn’t a diabetes group and I tend to be skeptical of unverifiable online information but I did find a 2017 study on the NCBI website [ Effects of marine collagen peptides on glucose metabolism and insulin resistance in type 2 diabetic rats], which seems to support the idea, unfortunately it was on Type 2 test subjects.

I was curious if anyone has ‘real world’ experience with collagen supporting better glucose control. In my quick Google search where I found the study I saw one non-diabetic refer to collagen as a super-healthy, one-ingredient protein smoothie, which could definitely stabilize BGs as long as a bunch of sugars aren’t added.

I hate it when I hear about something that is going to “stabilize bg’s”, other than the appropriate drugs and diet.

You’re smarter than me. I was wondering why people are eating a food thickening agent now.

Anna Lauren - Welcome to the community. I don’t have ‘real world experience’ with collagen, but since collagen products are basically protein, it would totally stand to reason that an argument could be made that any product that does not contain carbohydrates, will help to stabilize BG as compared to a product that contains carbohydrates as well.

If you are really looking at stabilizing your BGs, however, there are many other dietary ways that will give you far better results at much lower cost than buying collagen products.

What are you looking to accomplish? Just stabilize BGs? Lose weight? Feel better? What is your current A1C and are you on a CGM? With a little more information, this forum can give you plenty of alternatives to consider that should give you faster, better, cheaper results.

A1C is 6.0, using the Dexcom since 2013 and Tandem T:slim with Basal IQ(although the A1C was taken before I got the Basal IQ algorithm and my numbers have smoothed a bit since then). The more stable my BGs are the better I feel, so I’m always looking for new ways to make them a little better. Since so many things negatively affect them, I like to have as many tools as possible to positively affect them too!

There are many others on this forum better qualified than me based on how you are managing since I am on MDI. That being said, proper pre-bolus time and units, diet, and IF (Intermittent fasting) is what flatlined my BGs.

And the subjects were medically induced type 2 rats.


Your body processes collagen supplements like it would any other protein (breaks it down into amino acids and flushes excess in your urine) so they’re not likely to make a difference in any part of your body unless you’re protein deficient.

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This exactly! Also, collagen is synthesized just fine from essential amino acids that can be derived from animal or (complete) plant proteins. I suspect the “stabilizing” effect of collagen supplementation on BG is related to substitutions of protein for carbohydrate in an isocaloric diet. I.e., consuming 20g of protein is almost certainly going to produce a smaller increase in BG (for any diabetic) than 20g of carbohydrate.


I think I skipped a class or two to know all the words u used…

To translate:

Collagen is just animal protein, but it isn’t important to eat collagen. Your body can make your own from eating other proteins, including those in plants. But, for most of us diabetics, eating protein usually causes less of an increase in blood sugar than eating carbohydrates. So if you eat a couple tablespoons of collagen rather than a slice or two of white bread, it probably won’t need as much insulin to cover.

I got stumped on isocaloric. I could google, but I didn’t. :slight_smile:

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Hah, no worries! Isocaloric is a term for “changing a diet but not changing the total calories per day or week.” Since carbs and protein have roughly the same calories per gram, if you replace 30g of carbs per day with 30g of protein, then you will be eating roughly the same number of calories per day, but blood sugar response and insulin needs would change.