The gut healing benefits of gelatin
If you are embarking on a Paleo diet and looking to improve your digestive health, you will no doubt have found gelatin and bone broth to be a recurring theme.
Lets get the ugly bit out the way first. Gelatin is a fine powder formed from the dehydrated skin, bone and tissue of animals. Now let's move on swiftly........as unappealing as this may sound, gelatin's health benefits are not to be sniffed at. It's powerful soothing and healing properties can help form a strong foundation from which to re-build your digestive health and support the healing of autoimmune conditions. You can use the powdered variety of gelatin throughout your cooking to thicken sauces, set desserts and make gummies (recipe below). Alternatively you can get your gelatin quota from bone broth. The gelatin is extracted during the long, slow cooking process that breaks down the bones and cartilage.
What are the benefits?
Digestion - The amino acid content assists in repairing a leaky gut by soothing inflammation and restoring a healthy mucosal lining. It enhances the production of gastric acid secretions which support the healthy digestion and absorption of nutrients. Gelatin also draws water into the digestive tract promoting better intestinal transit.
Joint health - Gelatin can reduce symptoms caused by arthritis and osteoporosis. It's anti-inflammatory properties reduce bone and joint pain and support the growth of strong bones.
Skin - Gelatin provides amino acids vital to the production of collagen. Collagen is integral in giving your skin a youthful, healthy glow and for preventing the much loathed cellulite. It can even help reduce wrinkles and protect the skin from UV damage.
Sleep - Gelatin is a rich source of glycine, known to contribute to improved sleep quality and anxiety management. Consuming gelatin to improve sleep is a gentle alternative to over the counter medications that come with additional side effects.
What type do I buy?
Making your own bone broth is undoubtedly one of the best ways to get gelatin in your diet. You can have it in place of tea as a warm drink and to form the base of soups and stews. If you are histamine intolerant however I urge caution with bone broth. Firstly the slow cooking process will elevate the histamine content as will the acidity of the vinegar used to break down the bones.
If you are squeamish about boiling bones or simply crave a gelatin quick fix, then buying a powdered form to add to gummies and desserts is the perfect gut healing solution. I highly reconmend Great lakes gelatin (see the link below). Great Lakes Gelatin is grass fed and from humanely raised animals and contains no additional nasties - this is not like the gelatin you pick up from the supermarket baking aisles. The red cans are great to add to liquids you wish to set. The green can is perfect to add to hot or cold liquids - stir a tablespoon into your tea or smoothies for an added tummy soothing boost.
This blog tells an ongoing story about me and my journey back to health and happiness. A boho soul always looking for my next European adventure. I am a Coeliac, Yogi, paleo advocate, dreamer, Bon jovi connoisseur, sun worshipper, snuggly jumper wearer and wife to my lovely Paulie.