Jello is a gelatin-based substance that has been around since 1987. You might have had it with school lunches or snacks when you were a kid.
But do you ever wonder if it has any health benefits? Or, what if it carries toxic additives? So, comes the question, is jello healthy?
We are about to give you an array of reasons why you should or should not consume jello. You’ll also learn about all the potential side effects of its consumption, as well as if it is healthy in the long run.
Ready to learn some jello facts? Then read on to know more!
You may also like: Is Yakult Healthy?
To determine a food’s contribution, first, we need to know what it is made of. Jello is a sweet food substance with a wiggly texture, often served with artificial or natural flavors and colorings. It is mainly made from gelatin.
But did you know gelatin is made from animal collagen? Interesting, right?
Animal collagen is a protein constituent of the connective tissues that work to hold our body together, including skin and ligaments.
First, animal bones get boiled and dried. After that, it is later treated with an acid-base and gets filtered until the collagen is extracted.
Due to the extraction process, it turns into a powder-like substance. When the collagen (gelatin) gets combined with water; it forms a jelly-like substance.
You can buy jello in powder form and make it according to your preference or as pre-made snacks and sweets.
However, it is not suitable for vegetarian diets unless plant-based gelling chemicals are utilized.
You may also like: Is Pad Thai Healthy?
Is Jello Healthy?
Though it has both benefits and drawbacks, it’s generally safe to eat. Below, we’ll discuss the pros and cons to help you make a decision.
Reasons to Consume Jello:
Here, you are about to discover the significant health benefits associated with eating jello. So, without wasting any more time, let’s get right to it.
Improves Bone and Joint Health:
Gelatin is a supplement that improves bone and joint health, including pain and inflammation reduction. This is partly due to the fact that collagen is a critical component of the cartilage that cushions your joints.
Additionally, you require calcium to maintain strong bones – and you would be surprised to know that your bones are primarily composed of collagen. To be accurate, between 90% and 95% collagen.
Gelatin is basically cooked collagen in an easily absorbed form. This is why it is not astonishing that anything prepared from cooked animal bones would be beneficial to your bone health.
Consequently, by taking gelatin, you should be expanding the cartilage in your joints and promoting joint and bone health.
Many athletes supplement with collagen or gelatin. The same is true for individuals who have scleroderma.
Two essential components, Proline and Glycine, are required to form new cartilage in our joints. And what’s gelatin made of, you ask? Proline and Glycine, indeed!
So, unless you want to wind up like your great aunt Susan, who has debilitating arthritis, you’ll want to make sure your joints get the nutrients they need.
According to medical experts, consuming 5 grams of particular collagen peptides every day for 12 months improved women’s bone mineral density. However, it is not recommended to anyone without a doctor’s advice. So, please consult your doctor before applying it.
Source of Protein:
Protein’s benefits are undeniable. This macronutrient is necessary for the formation and maintenance of tissues throughout our bodies, production, muscle development, and many more.
However, individuals, such as athletes or those attempting to grow muscle may need additional protein. But did you know 11 grams of protein are contained in just two tablespoons? That is almost 10% of your recommended daily allowance!
And because gelatin is not a complete protein due to the absence of specific amino acids, it is not recommended for post-workout recovery. Still, it can certainly help you meet your daily protein requirements.
For Fat-Free diet:
The majority of protein sources, particularly red meat, contain a moderate amount of fat. Even if you stick to lean cuts, you are still going to get some fat in the mix.
However, it would be great if you understood that fat is not the problem here. The appropriate type and amount of fat in your diet can actually improve your health rather than put you at risk.
Nonetheless, you should be aware of reducing fat consumption. If it becomes necessary, gelatin becomes an excellent source as it is practically fat-free.
Gelatin has been associated with improved digestion. This is partly due to the fact that gelatin binds to water, which aids in the passage of food through the digestive system.
Additionally, gelatin contains Glycine, the predominant inflammation control in the stomach, small intestine, and GI tract. Glycine is the anti-inflammatory part that can modulate the gut flora and protect the gut from freezing. It also helps to strengthen the stomach lining.
Gelatin’s ability to absorb water is also beneficial since it retains fluid where it belongs and facilitates good bowel movements.
These actions are one of the reasons that gelatin-rich soups and broths are recommended as practical strategies to improve digestion and gut health. They’re even included in gut-healing protocols such as the GAPS diet.
Increases Weight Loss:
Consumption of gelatin over an extended period of time may help to decrease hunger. It assists you in feeling fuller so that you eat less. A study showed that ingesting a gelatin meal may also help obese individuals achieve maximum fullness.
This, in turn, may help to stop binge eating and promote weight loss.
Apart from its empty calorie content, collagen aids in weight loss by controlling blood sugar.
However, it is important to realize that eating too much sugar-sweetened food containing artificial colors and flavors may result in specific adverse effects.
Side effects of jello:
Before eating jello, it is a good idea to understand some of the potential adverse health impacts.
The majority of jello is flavored artificially.
Sugar-free boxed jello is sweetened with aspartame and sucralose. Aspartame has been shown in animal and human research to cause cell damage and inflammation. These chemicals impart a pleasant taste and flavor to jello but provide no nutritional advantages.
Besides, animal studies have linked aspartame to an increased risk of developing various malignancies, including lymphoma and kidney cancer.
Several times artificial flavors have been demonstrated to disrupt the gut microbiome. Although it is known that jello helps to reduce body weight, it has been shown that regular consumption of artificial flavors results in a rise in body weight.
Now let’s talk about the colorings. It’s possible that you understand that the majority of jello is artificially colored. Although the amount of food color in jello is unclear, it is likely to vary between brands.
These colorings are basically created with substances derived from petroleum, a naturally occurring chemical used to make gasoline that may have adverse health effects.
Some food colors include benzidine, a recognized carcinogen dyes that may induce cancer. There are even other worries concerning them, such as the possibility that food dyes cause hyperactivity in children.
Further research indicates that as little as 20 mg of artificial food colors may have a detrimental effect.
However, the (FDA) permits their use in low dosages deemed to be safe.
Increased Sugar Intake:
The third point to make is about sugar. For instance, one serving of Jell-O Original Strawberry Gelatin Snacks has a whopping 17 grams of sugar. The powdered version isn’t much better, with 19 grams of sugar per serving.
There are sugar-free varieties available, but these rely on artificial sweeteners to provide the necessary sweetness. These sweeteners are troubling in and of themselves and hence aren’t much better than sugar.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Are jello and gelatin the same thing?
No, jello is made by boiling gelatin.
Is jello good for your joints?
There is some limited proof that jello might be beneficial for joints, but there’s no conclusive evidence yet in support of this claim.
Is jello easy on the stomach?
It is, so, you won’t have digestion issues after eating it.
Now, is jello healthy?
It provides far more health benefits than drawbacks and is entirely safe to take. However, doctor’s consultation is advised if you are allergic.
Also, many varieties of jello are manufactured every day. So, even if you’re vegetarian, you will still be able to receive your fix of protein, as vegan jellos are available.
Other than that, do not be afraid to include jello into your daily diet. Just keep in mind that excessive consumption of anything is dangerous — consume jello only as much as it is necessary.