Jello: The Undercover Health Food

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Jello is a delicious versatile dessert that can help reduce inflammation, make skin look younger, and improve bone health! This wiggly dessert is not just for kids anymore!

I am not talking about the boxed commercial jello that most of us are used to. It is high in sugar and filled with artificial colors and flavors. Instead, I am referring to homemade natural jello made with gelatin, juice, and water.

I came across this healthy homemade jello because my husband is in the process of healing his inflammation through diet and this is one of the recommended foods. I have enjoyed making and eating jello often ever since. It is a tasty snack, it very easy to make, and it comes with many health benefits.

What is Jello? It May Seem Gross

Jello is made from gelatin. Gelatin is a protein derived from the collagen found in the skin, bones, and ligaments of animals (1). It comes as a pale yellow powder that can be mixed with juice or any other liquid to make the jello dessert we all know.

Humans used to eat as much of an animal as possible consuming many parts that are high in gelatin. Now most of us only consume the best muscle parts discarding the rest. Because of this, our diets are very low in the many amino acids that are found in the gelatin of an animal. Luckily you don’t need very much gelatin to get the health benefits. A small cup of jello a day is enough to the trick!

Knowing exactly what gelatin is may make some people feel a bit yucky. But this is a natural food that can be found in the capsules of your supplements, in many candies, and in broth. In fact the new craze around bone broth is in large part due to the health benefits of gelatin.

What Makes Jello so Healthy

Gelatin being a protein is made of amino acids. It contains a wide range of amino acids with glycine being the most prevalent and arguably the most helpful one (2). Glycine has been shown to be effective for a wide range of things from aiding with digestion and detoxing the liver to acting as an antidepressant and safe sleep aid.

Some of the health benefits of gelatin include:

  • healing stomach lining
  • eases joint pain
  • helps the body heal from injuries
  • eases inflammation
  • improves sleep
  • heals skin – great to reduce wrinkles
  • acts as a natural sleep aid
  • natural anti-depressant and stress reliever

(2)

Simple Health-Giving Jello Recipe

  • 4 Tbs gelatin powder*
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 3 1/2 cups fruit juice of choice*

*To make this a truly healthy dessert, choose high quality gelatin and fruit juice. Gelatin from grass fed cows is preferred organic even better, and 100% fruit juice preferably organic also and when possible unpasteurized.

Add 1/2 cup of juice to the gelatin and mix until it thickens. Add boiling water and mix until mixture dissolves. Add the rest of the juice and stir. Pour into molds.

inspired from Joint-Healing Gell-o reciepe in Hot Detox

This makes a fairly hard jello that can be cut into shapes. If you like a soft jello, simply use about 3 1/2 tablespoons of gelatin instead of 4.

Be creative with your jello. Add fruit or shredded coconut. Try making it with green tea, coconut milk, or use homemade kombucha for a probiotic version.

Sources for this article include:
(1) JRank: Gelatin
(2) Dr. Axe: Gelatin- What Is It? Plus 8 Uses and Benefits

Amy Lock

Amy is a writer and a mother of two young boys. She has a wide variety of interests including mindful parenting, small space gardening, health and fitness, creative healthy recipes, and more… all of which are reflected in her writing.


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  • Photomaineac

    Don’t forget “Bone Broth Soup” is delicious and healthy!