You may have seen gelatin listed on the ingredients panel of some of your favorite foods. For example, gelatin is one of the main ingredients in Jell-O, the dessert. But what exactly is gelatin?
Gelatin is actually a complex composition of proline and glycine, both of which are forms of amino acids. As a general rule, this animal product comes from the fibrous tissues, organs and bones of animals, so you won’t be getting it through your diet very often unless you are used to eating these parts of animals. In addition, those who are vegetarian or vegan will very rarely get gelatin in their natural diet and may choose not to take it at all.
For those would like to get more gelatin in their diets but don’t eat the fibrous tissues, organs and bones of animals, taking gelatin supplements is another option to look into.
There are a number of benefits to either consuming gelatin through your diet or taking gelatin dietary supplements.
1. Can help with joint health and recovery from joint injury
Gelatin helps your bones and joints. If you have recently undergone a joint injury, such as a sprained ankle or broken knee, taking gelatin on a regular basis can help to heal this injury faster. In addition, if you do a lot of strength training, which includes squats or lifting heavy weights, you can keep your joints healthy by making sure your daily dietary supplement contains a healthy dose of gelatin.
2. It encourages hair, skin and nail growth
Many women take dietary supplements containing gelatin in order to encourage hair, skin and nail growth. You will notice you have longer and harder nails and shinier and healthier hair when you take gelatin supplements on a regular basis. You can either take a supplement in a pill or gel cap form or in a dissolved liquid form. For the latter, simply dissolve a packet of gelatin into water or juice and drink it every day.
3. It’s a great source of dietary collagen
As we age, we lose our sources of collagen. Collagen is a chemical that is produced by the body, but our stores of collagen slow down production as we get older. This is part of what causes deep wrinkles and fine lines in our faces and elsewhere on our bodies. There are some topical creams and ointments that say they contain collagen to help replenish our stores, but adding college to your skin topically is not very effective. Instead, you can try taking gelatin as a dietary supplement to encourage collagen in your skin. Over time, you will notice that your skin is tighter, smoother and more evenly toned with less overall wrinkles.