Collagen: the supplement industry’s evergreen answer to mobility issues

Published: 28-Nov-2022

Addressing the factors affecting mobility, Rousselot’s Global Business Development Manager for Health and Nutrition, Florencia Moreno Torres, looks at ways to keep the global population moving

Whether we are 25 or 75, mobility is intrinsically tied to our quality of life. All the activities we do, from practicing sports to cooking or even reading a book, all require our body to move, bend and be flexible. In today’s world, the “active approach” to life is gaining popularity and more people want to maintain their mobility and independence for longer.

However, several factors may negatively impact our ability to move freely. The ageing process is definitely one of the main contributors as it can lead to weaker bones and less flexible joints, which are the essential structures supporting our body.

This is why many older people are turning to supplements to help their bodies stay active for longer … but they are not the only consumer category interested in mobility.

Besides ageing, any change in our physical activity can make us susceptible to bone and joint related issues. Cartilage is the substance that covers the bones of a joint to act as a shock absorber and lubricator.

Collagen: the supplement industry’s evergreen answer to mobility issues

When subjected to repeated impact (such as during exercise) it can become inflamed, leading to joint stiffness and discomfort.1 

Maintaining a healthy diet, with the right intake of nutrients such as calcium, protein and vitamin D and K, is also very important for keeping joint and bones healthy. For a wide variety of reasons, however, an ideal diet and exercise regime are not accessible to all consumers all the time. 

With these factors in mind, some groups may need help to consume the right mobility supporting nutrients. These include professional athletes and amateur sportspeople whose joints come under stress through regular exercise and high-intensity sessions.

The overweight population may also require bone-health supplements owing to the extra strain placed on their joints during day-to-day life. 

What’s driving the trend for mobility supplementation?
As a result of these factors, many consumer groups are becoming increasingly conscious of the impact that poor bone and joint health can have on mobility. Indeed, according to research by FMCG Gurus, 66% of global consumers made a link between joint and bone health and overall well-being in 2021, compared with 60% in 2018.2

Functional foods, beverages and dietary supplements of this kind have therefore exploded in popularity.

In 2021, a third of global consumers were taking supplements for mobility and one in five stated that they purchased foods to improve their ability to move freely, leaving room for exciting growth potential in the nutrition and supplement market.3

Although demand for mobility supporting supplements is increasing, consumers are equally concerned about finding the right solution for them. This is especially true at a time when value and effectiveness are top of mind. As a natural, versatile and proven mobility supporting ingredient, collagen is the supplement manufacturer’s not-so-secret weapon for keeping consumers and market growth moving.

Collagen’s crucial role
As the glue that holds our entire body together, collagen makes a real difference in keeping us mobile. This essential protein is responsible for the integrity and elasticity of virtually every connective tissue.

Collagen: the supplement industry’s evergreen answer to mobility issues

Unfortunately, collagen production within our bodies significantly diminishes with age. This means that if we want to keep our bones, joints, skin and hair healthy, supplementation may be necessary. 

In their native form, collagen molecules are difficult for the body to digest. To be effective as orally administered supplements, they must undergo a hydrolysis and enzymatic process to create collagen peptides, which are highly bioavailable nutrients. A prime example of collagen peptides is Rousselot’s flagship solution Peptan.

Once absorbed by the body, this bioactive ingredient is able to trigger the synthesis and reorganisation of new collagen fibres, bolstering the collagen matrices found in skin, bones, muscles and joints.4–7

As a form of type I collagen — which is the variety most abundantly found in the human body — Peptan delivers holistic benefits, from general well-being to enhanced skin and hair beauty. In bones, it can support the body’s process of maintaining bone density and strength. It also promotes joint health benefits, thus contributing to overall mobility. 

The science behind Peptan
With regard to joint health, an in vivo study found that a daily dose of Peptan before cartilage damage resulted in cartilage preservation (Figure 1) and reduced inflammation (Figure 2) in mice, whereas in a randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial, elderly women with mild joint discomfort reported a significant reduction of painful symptoms, such as stiffness and pain, after oral intake of Peptan.6,8

These scientific findings showed this solution’s ability to increase the production of cells responsible for the building and maintenance of the cartilage matrix after just 3 weeks. 

Collagen: the supplement industry’s evergreen answer to mobility issues

Figure 1: Oral intake of Peptan before joint damage preserves cartilage in mice

Collagen: the supplement industry’s evergreen answer to mobility issues

Figure 2: Peptan reduces inflammation in mice

Focus on joint care 
To help manufacturers hoping to support more active lifestyles through a specific focus on joint health, Rousselot has developed Colartix, a unique cartilage collagen matrix made of naturally occurring collagen peptides and glycosaminoglycans (GAGs).

A large-scale consumer study submitted for publication this year found that supplementation with a daily dose (1 g) of Colartix contributed to a steady decrease in joint discomfort across gender, age and sport intensity.9

Quality ingredients for quality of life 
As the global leader in collagen-based solutions, Rousselot’s is perfectly placed to support manufacturers with seizing the opportunities offered by the bone and joint health sector.10 With an extensive body of peer-reviewed scientific studies, its collagen peptide brand Peptan ticks all the boxes — offering highly bioavailable solutions that can be easily added to any kind of formulation.

Rousselot’s unique cartilage collagen matrix Colartix is equally easy to use, extremely versatile and will soon be clinically proven to support healthy mobility at all stages of life.9 


  1. J.J. McDougall, “Arthritis and Pain. Neurogenic Origin of Joint Pain,” Arthritis Res. Ther. 8(6), 220 (2006).
  3. Innova Market Insights, “Health & Nutrition Survey” (2021).
  4. J. Asserin, et al., “The Effect of Oral Collagen Peptide Supplementation on Skin Moisture and the Dermal Collagen Network: Evidence from an Ex Vivo Model and Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trials,” Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology 14(4), 291–301 (2015).
  5. T. Clifford, et al., “The Effects of Collagen Peptides on Muscle Damage, Inflammation and Bone Turnover Following Exercise: A Randomized, Controlled Trial,” Amino Acids 51(4), 691–704 (2019).
  6. Q.A. Dar, et al., “Daily Oral Consumption of Hydrolyzed Type 1 Collagen is Chondroprotective and Anti-Inflammatory in Murine Posttraumatic Osteoarthritis,” PLoS One 12(4), e0174705 (2017).
  7. A. Daneault, et al., “Biological Effect of Hydrolyzed Collagen on Bone Metabolism,” Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition 57(9), 1922–1937 (2017).
  8. J. Jiang, “Collagen Peptides Improve Knee Osteoarthritis in Elderly Women. A 6-Month Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study,” Agro FOOD industry Hi Tech 25(2), 19–23 (2014).
  9. C. Newman, et al., “The Effect of a Natural Matrix of Collagen Types and Chondroitin Sulfate on Joint Discomfort in Physically Active Adults: A Real-Life Setting Study,” Submitted for publication (2022).

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