When you hear the word “gelatin” what do you think of? Does the word “superfood” come to mind? Probably not, but what if we told you that gelatin, when sourced properly and prepared with love, is actually one the of the most healing and healthy foods on the planet. It’s true!
So what exactly is Gelatin?
Gelatin is dehydrated protein collagen found in the connective tissue, bones and cartilage of animals. In its natural state it’s a tasteless, odorless substance that is often used in jellied desserts, candies, cheese, processed meats, beverages, cosmetics, protein supplements and gel capsules.
Why is “sourcing” so important?
Ever heard of the saying, “like creates like”? Well that is certainly true when it comes to your food. Healthy animals make healthy food. When an animal, particularly a cow, is raised on its natural diet of grass, rather than grains, it provides more minerals, essential fatty acids and protein to those who consume it.
Our favorite gelatin is a collagen hydrolysate which can be found here. Collagen hydrolysate (also known as hydrolyzed collagen) is processed differently than regular gelatin. It is processed where the proteins are actually broken into smaller pieces which makes the collagen never gel. They both have the same amino acids, but different chemical properties. If you are making a recipe that you need that ‘gel’ effect, than get this one here.
Alright, now let’s talk about why gelatin so good for you!
It’s a beauty food
For most people, collagen starts to break down in our skin as early as our late 20′s, which is why we get wrinkles! Collagen is made up of amino acids that are vital for skin elasticity, and tone. Although many skin creams contain collagen and thereby claim to prevent wrinkles the truth is, collagen is too large to be absorbed by the skin. By taking it internally in the form of gelatin you’re able to truly give your body what it needs to postpone the aging process from the start. And it’s not just great for prevention! Research also shows that gelatin can stimulate and enhance the production of new collagen, which offers significant improvement to the look and health of pre-mature wrinkling. And if that’s not enough, because of its collagen boosting ability, gelatin has been said to help prevent stretch marks and cellulite as well!
It supports healthy liver function as well as digestion
Our liver is the hardest working organ in the body. It’s responsible for over 500 functions every day and its primary job is to detoxify everything that enters into our body. It does this with the help of an antioxidant called glutathione. Glutathione is only one of two antioxidants that are produced by the body…. that’s how important it is! But in order for the body to make glutathione it needs the amino acid glycine, which gelatin just happens to be abundant in. Without enough glycine, the body can’t make enough glutathione. It should also be said that glutathione helps to remove excess levels of estrogen from the body, thereby helping us to balance our hormones naturally. And just for an added bonus, gycine also helps to increase hyrochloric acid (HCL) in the stomach which is essential for digestion and assimilation of nutrients.
Gelatin is rich in minerals that so many of us are deficient in due to mainstream factory farming methods and the modern American diet. Minerals like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulpher and other trace minerals which help to build healthy bones, strong teeth, hair and finger nails.
Gelatin also contains Chondroitin, a chemical compound in cartilage which has been used for years by traditional medicine as a supplement for helping people with arthritis pain and stiffness as well as inflammation and swelling. By consuming the dissolved connective tissue of healthy animals you can support your own bodies joints, cartilage and tendons. Research has found that by taking therapeutic doses of gelatin, one can dramatically improve rheumatoid arthritis and other degenerative joint conditions. And because if it’s high levels of amino acids, it can preserve and restore muscle mass, which helps to boost your metabolism!
Gelatin can also:
Heal leaky gut
Support the kidneys and adrenals
Lower inflammation in the body
Promote healthy weight loss
Alleviate symptoms of minor allergies
Before supplementing with gelatin, always talk to your doctor.
Here is one of our favorite recipes for a delicious gelatin snack!
Chai Tea Jello Cubes
1 T Grate Lakes unflavored beef gelatin
1 cup of hot brewed Bengal spice tea (brew with 2 tea bags) or Chai tea of your choice
2 tbsp full-fat coconut milk
1 tsp raw organic honey
Brew the tea with boiling water. Once it’s steeped, remove the tea bags. Stir in the gelatin and honey to dissolve completely. Add the coconut milk and stir. Pour into glass storage container. Refrigerate until set, 2-3 hours.