The most popular use of gelatin is in cooking, as a thickener, stabiliser and to provide texture to foods such as jams, cream cheese, sweets and some yoghurts. It is often used in low-calorie foods to imitate the feel of fat in the mouth without adding the calories.
Gelatin is derived from hydrolysed collagen derived from skin, bones, cartilage and connective tissues of animals. Hydrolysation is a process that breaks down protein into amino acids making them easier to absorb. Gelatin is very rich in proteins, almost 98% of its content is proteins and a rich source of amino acids containing 18 amino acids, primarily glycine and proline.
Traditional diets were typically richer in gelatin than our modern diets because of nose to tail eating practices and consumed parts of the animal that were high in gelatin such as skin, tendons, bone broths and other gelatinous cuts of meat similar to those who eat a Paleolithic diet. Today, this practice does not exist widely and we have lost the practice of whole animal eating. In fact there is an increase in vegetarian eating with the result that we are eating a lot less gelatin than our ancestors did, if any at all.
Gelatin could be considered the first superfood because of its benefits. Gelatin helps to reduce levels of homocysteine in the body which is the marker for cardiovascular disease such as heart disease and stroke.
Gelatin has been shown to enhance gastric acid secretion and repair the lining of the stomach. Low acid production and impaired stomach barrier function are two common digestive problems in modern society.
Gelatin helps improve skin quality and function since glycine and proline found in gelatin help in the manufacture of collagen.
These are just a few examples of the benefits of gelatin.
Gelatin for Hair and Nails
Historically, it was always thought that consuming gelatin would help strengthen weak, fragile hair and nails. There is justification to this and it has been shown that consuming gelatin helps to strengthen hair and nails. There have been several studies on gelatin consumption and its benefits to prevent hair loss and to strengthen hair notably one published by Dr Zeev Pam at the Annual Meeting of the European Hair Research Society where he concludes that gelatin in conjuction with other supplements such as saw palmetto berry may be very effective in treating hair loss and encouraging strong healthy nails.
Before you start considering eating jelly on a daily basis to strengthen your hair and nails, nearly all brands of jelly these days are made from a vegetarian substitute and is a poor source of the natural protein and amino acids found in animal gelatin. Animal gelatin is rich in the fantastic ‘sulphur-rich’ amino acids that encourage healthy hair and nail growth. As mentioned earlier, our modern diets are not rich in these ‘sulphur-rich’ amino acids however there is a supplement that mimics the amino acids found in animal gelatin called Hairjelly Protein Capsules. Hairjelly Protein Capsules are 100% vegetarian and may be used by those who are experiencing thinning hair, loss of texture, chemical damage of hair or even cyclical hair loss such as during a period or due to a largely vegetarian diet.
For hair loss as a result of going through the menopause and beyond, the most common causal factor for hair loss, I would recommend the additional use of Superior Hair capsules. Hair loss as a result of the menopause and post-menopause is thought to arise due to the deficiency of female hormones which leads to the dominance of the male hormone, testosterone, in the bloodstream. Since the body works within very finite levels of all hormones, this excess testosterone is converted into a compound that inflames the scalp which results in disturbed signals for keratin production of which hair is made up of. Additionally, underlying inflammation of the scalp also results in poor nutrient availability to the hair follicles causing them to be malnourished.
The growth of shampoos and other topical products for hair loss has been exponential over the last few years. Unfortunately, many of these topical products may actually be harmful to the scalp leaving behind residues that block the hair follicles starving them of vital oxygen and nutrients. I have no doubt that there are some good hair care products on the market that address hair loss however there is one particular range that stands alone in its field, Phylia de M.
Ful.Vic.Health hair care products contain Fulvic Acid which delivers 65+ minerals including trace minerals to nourish the follicles, encouraging hair growth and hair regrowth. The formulations are laden with herbal actives to calm down underlying scalp inflammation which hinders keratin production. These products work together to bring back total hair health.
I believe that it is imperative to address hair loss and thinning hair quickly in order to slow down the process and help protect existing hair.