Homemade Healthy Jello Snacks
Last week, we had a great discussion on the Primally Inspired facebook page about pregnancy related nutrition. In that discussion, I told you that my sister-in-law is pregnant with their first baby and she’s been asking me some pregnancy related nutrition questions.
Being the geek that I am, dove into a big pile of nutrition and pregnancy books, research, seminars and international studies so I could be better prepared to answer her questions and because I always love to learn new things, too. So now you get to be a recipient of all the cool things I’ve been learning 🙂
Side note: 2 books that I’d highly recommend if you are planning to conceive in the next couple of years or are pregnant: The Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby & Child Care by Sally Fallon Morell and Beautiful Babies by Kristen Michaelis.
Early into her pregnancy, one of first things she asked me was about stretch marks. As her petite body was noticeably growing quickly to build a baby, she wanted to know if there was anything she could do to prevent stretch marks from happening.
Most women think stretch marks are an inevitable part of having a baby. But stretch marks and cellulite don’t happen from genetics or carrying excess fat. Instead these things arise when your body doesn’t have enough connective tissue and your skin doesn’t have enough elasticity. Did you know you can prevent this from happening through nutrition?!
Yes, you can! Break out the banjos and start dancing now (see, told you I was a geek 😉 ).
Eating a diet rich in collagen is very beneficial in preventing stretch marks and cellulite. Collagen supplies your body with the tools it needs to repair itself to give you smooth, firm, and elastic skin.
So what are some collagen rich foods?
The best sources of collagen are bone broths using animal bones (knuckles, joints, etc.). Oxtail and chicken feet broths are known to provide the most amount of collagen. Most research suggests pregnant women drink at least 1 cup of collagen rich bone broth a day – not only for their own skin health, but for the numerous health benefits that these broths supply to the growing baby and mother.
Another way to get that wonderful collagen in your diet is by eating gelatin. And guess what contains gelatin? This delicious homemade Jello! Yes, Jello! Another reason to break out the banjos and start dancing again.
(By the way, I’m not talking about the Jello that comes in a little rectangular box at your grocery store. I’m talking about real, grass-fed beef gelatin. And don’t worry – it’s unflavored, so you won’t be able to taste beef if that’s what you’re wondering.) I buy my gelatin online from here – it’s the only company that I know of that sources from grass-fed cows.
The reason this Jello is so great to eat is that it contains beef gelatin. And gelatin is basically cooked and powdered collagen.
There are so many benefits from eating gelatin and collagen – and it’s not just for pregnant women or those wanting to get rid of cellulite. Let me highlight just a few of the major benefits:
- Powerful anti-inflammatory with almost immediate relief from joint pain, similar to taking cortisol or aspirin.
- Good source of protein (7-12 grams per tablespoon) and amino acids.
- Improves digestion by making it easier for the food to pass through the digestive system. It also soothes and heals the digestive track.
- Strengthens bones and joints so it’s wonderful for growing children and those with brittle bones and joint pain.
- Helps hair and nail strength and growth.
- Helps our immune function.
- Helps regulate our weight by boosting our metabolism.
Who knew that eating some jello with beef gelatin could provide all those amazing benefits?!
This is also the perfect snack for kids. Kids love this stuff and you can feel good about giving them something so good for their growing bodies that doesn’t contain any funky ingredients or refined sugars.
You can use unsweetened real fruit juice to make your life a lot easier or try it with some freshly squeezed juice. My favorite is orange!
Homemade Healthy Jello Snacks
2 cups unsweetened fruit juice or fruit puree (My favorite is using fresh squeezed orange juice from 6 oranges or a strawberry puree)
2 tablespoons beef gelatin
1-2 tablespoons raw honey
Whisk the fruit juice/puree and the gelatin together in a medium sized pot. Let sit for 5 minutes. Turn on the stove to medium and place the pot on the burner. Stir until heated through and the gelatin is all the way dissolved. Do NOT bring to a boil. Once the gelatin is completely dissolved, turn off the heat and add the honey. Stir until well mixed. Pour into an 8×8 pan. Cover and refrigerate until set. Cut into squares and enjoy! Store leftovers in the fridge.