Is Jello Gluten Free and Healthy?

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Obi Obadike

Obi Obadike

Celebrity Fitness & Nutrition Expert, CFT, SFN, M.S. Founder & CEO – Ethical Inc.
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Is Jello gluten free and healthy? Jello contains gelatin, no gluten and sugar so technically it is naturally gluten free. Jello is produced in factories that contain gluten containing products. So, it is hard to call Jello completely 100% gluten free because it is made in facilities that have gluten containing ingredients. And it is one of the main reasons why Jello is never labeled gluten free.

Is Jello gluten free? Photo Credit: iStock-koya79

What is jello made of? The primary ingredient in Jello is gelatin. Gelatin is made of animal collagen and that is a protein that has connective tissues such as bones, ligaments, skin, tendons, etc. The sweeteners that are used in Jello are aspartame which is an artificial calorie free sweetener. Artificial flavors are also used in Jello, and they are chemical mixtures that imitate a natural flavor.

Because more consumers are health conscious, they are demanding more natural flavoring. So jellos are being made with more natural flavors for health-conscious consumers.

Jellos are also made with artificial food dyes and because they are made from gelatin it prevents it from becoming vegetarian friendly.

What are the nutrient contents of Jello?

Jello is low in calories and fat free and one serving of Jello is 80 calories, 1.6 grams of protein and 18 grams of sugar. And this portion is 4.5 teaspoons. Jello is high in sugar, and it is not the healthiest thing to eat.

The nutrient value of sugar-free jello is 13 calories, 1 gram of protein and no sugar but it does have artificial sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners still have negative effects on your health.

What is the advantage of collagen?

Collagen is influential in bone health. There was a study done on postmenopausal women who took 5 grams of collagen peptides a day for one year. And they significantly increased bone density compared to women with placebo.

There was a small 24-week study among college athletes who took 10 grams a day of a liquid collagen supplement. The study revealed they experienced less joint pain compared to the placebo group.

There was a 12-week study where women who aged 40 to 60 years took 1000 mg of a liquid collagen supplement showed improvements in skin hydration, elasticity, and wrinkling.

Although there is collagen in jello the amounts are small and so the sugar in it negatively counteracts any health effects you may receive from jello. Research studies have shown that high sugar diets can accelerate aging and increase inflammation in the body.

“Jello contains gluten and sugar so technically it is naturally gluten free. Jello is produced in factories that contain gluten containing products.” Celebrity Fitness & Nutrition Expert Obi Obadike

The Bottom Line is Jello is gluten free, but it is made in facilities that have gluten containing products. It offers little nutritional value because of its artificial colors, sweeteners, or sugar.

It does contain collagen which is healthy but the amount of collagen in gelatin is minimal. And so, it won’t overcome the unhealthy nutritional value from gelatin.

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  6. Choudhary AK, Pretorius E. Revisiting the safety of aspartame. Nutr Rev. 2017 Sep 1;75(9):718-730. doi: 10.1093/nutrit/nux035. Erratum in: Nutr Rev. 2018 Apr 1;76(4):301. Erratum in: Nutr Rev. 2018 Nov 1;76(11):860. PMID: 28938797.
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