Anti-Aging Fruit Snacks

As a kid, I used to go to TOWN on some Gushers.

You know, those little fruit snacks that have a “gush” of fruit stuff in the middle, sending a shock of insulin to already hyped up children…

Source: http://amzn.to/15sJZGF

Source: http://amzn.to/15sJZGF

They were/are the most desirable snack for kids – not only delivering 3+ teaspoons of sugar per pack – but the palatability of that “gush” is unmatched!

Nevermind the fact that juicy grapes basically do the same thing, but without these 25 ingredients:

PEARS FROM CONCENTRATE, SUGAR, CORN SYRUP DRIED, CORN SYRUP, CORN STARCH MODIFIED, FRUCTOSE, COTTONSEED OIL PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED AND/OR, COTTONSEED OIL, GRAPE(S) JUICE FROM CONCENTRATE CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF THE FOLLOWING: MALTODEXTRIN, CARRAGEENAN, CITRIC ACID, GLYCERINE, MONOGLYCERIDE DISTILLED, SODIUM CITRATE, MALIC ACID, ASCORBIC ACID, POTASSIUM CITRATE, AGAR-AGAR, FLAVOR(S) NATURAL & ARTIFICIAL, XANTHAN GUM, COLOR(S) (BLUE 1, YELLOW 5, YELLOW 6).

Newsflash: These oh-so-innocent, “naturally flavored” snacks rank a big fat “F,” according to the lovely FoodFacts.com.

With 3 food dyes, genetically modified ingredients, inflammatory preservatives (ahem, carageenan), and hydrogenated oils (need I go on more?), this is the last thing to give to children. Especially mixing sugar + food dyes… that’s a recipe for instant hyperactivity and inattention (Stevens, et. al, 2013)!

Fast forward to the invention of REAL fruit snacks. Had I known these were so easy and healthy to make, I would have attempted these years ago!

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Beyond the fact that there’s really only 3 – 4 ingredients used to make these bad boys, they are loaded with “Nature’s Botox.”

Yes, that would be gelatin, also known as collagen.


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What is this stuff? According to Great Lakes Gelatin, one of the highest quality versions around:

“Gelatin is obtained from selected pieces of calf and cattle hides, de-mineralized cattle bones (ossein) and pork skin.”

Weirded out?

Don’t be. Our body is made up of 30% collagen, and our natural ability to produce supporting connective tissue diminishes after age 25. Translation: We need as much help as we can get to support our joints, bones, and connective tissues!

My first attempt: Raspberry Citrus Fruit Snacks!

My first attempt: Raspberry Citrus Fruit Snacks!

Collagen is a naturally occurring protein collagen that does just that…

  • It hydrates the body’s tissues.
  • It has high amounts of amino acids glycine, lysine, and proline, which are found to generate cell growth.
  • It’s beneficial in replacing the synovial fluids between the joints, and to repair and build cartilage (Great Lakes Gelatin, 2008).

In fact, in a trial of long-term care residents with pressure ulcers, those taking a collagen supplement had TWICE the rate of pressure ulcer healing after 8 weeks (Kwon, Posthauer, Dorner, Redovian, Maloney,  2006).

Another small study at Penn State, which investigated the effect of collagen (hydrolysate) on activity-related joint pain in athletes, found joint pain improved in 24 weeks (Clark, et. al., 2008).

Other benefits that Great Lakes Gelatin boasts of include benefits to:

“…hair, skin tissue, muscle, cartilage, ligaments and blood cell growth. Some doctors are referring to this product as the new anti-aging product of the century.”

To consume this missing link more in your diet, you can drink 1 – 2  tablespoons per day with this version that doesn’t gel mixed with water.

Or, make these super simple fruit snacks with this version which gels, inspired by Balanced Bite’s recipe. (Note: Another fantastic way is to consume homemade bone broth!).

strawberry raspberry fruit snacksIngredients:

1 1/4 – 1/2 cups of pureed strawberries and raspberries
*If you prefer a less concentrated version, use 1 1/4 c fruit puree, and 1/4 c water!
4 – 5 tbsp gelatin

Instructions:

1. Pureé the strawberries and raspberries.

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2. In a small pan or pot on medium heat, whisk the gelatin into the fruit pureé until the gelatin is fully dissolved.

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3. Pour the mixture into a glass pan. The smaller the size, the thicker the fruit snacks.

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4. Chill the mixture for about 30 – 45 minutes in the fridge.

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5. Cut into pieces and enjoy! Store in the fridge.

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Now, how’s that for a MUCH better alternative to gushers!? :)

:::

References

Clark, KL, Sebastianelli, W, Flechsenhar, KR, Aukermann, DF, Meza, F, Millard, RL, Deitch, JR, Sherbondy, PS & Albert, A. (2008). 24-Week study on the use of collagen hydrolysate as a dietary supplement in athletes with activity-related joint pain. Curr Med Res Opin. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18416885.

Collagen Hydrosylate Info. (2008). Great Lakes Gelatin. http://www.greatlakesgelatin.com/consumer/CollagenFAQ.php.

Kwon, L, Posthauer, ME, Dorner, B, Redovian, V, Maloney, MJ

Stevens, LJ, Kuczek, T, Burgess, JR, Stochelski MA, Arnold LE & Galland L. (2013). Mechanisms of behavioral, atopic, and other reactions to artificial food colors in children. Nutr Rev. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23590704.

 

 

 

Note: Jules’ Fuel uses affiliate links in some blog posts. If you make a purchase using one of these links, which costs the same either way, it’s a very, very small way to help me cover the cost of running this website. So, thanks!

42 responses on “Anti-Aging Fruit Snacks

  1. I LOVE the Great Lakes Gelatin too and have also started making gummy snacks, so fun and delicious. The only thing you have to watch out for is the difference between the Red and Green cans. The green can, collagen hydrolysate is great for mixing into liquids and drinking because it doesn’t gel. It’s not great for gummy snacks or gelatin treats, same reason. The red can is perfect for the gummy snacks and gelatin treats. You may have made that clear in the post. I can be a dunce so sorry if I missed the descriptive distinction : )

    • Lovely, thank you so much for the clarification! I have made some tweaks so its much clearer in my post. Thanks again for the help/tip!

    • Hi Geri! Sorry I wasn’t clear in my post. The red version (http://amzn.to/14XZ9A5) from Great Lakes is kosher and made from beef. This is the one to buy to make jello/fruit snacks, because it gels.

      The green version (http://amzn.to/17nR2k3) dissolves in water and also says it’s kosher. After researching on their website, this version is also from beef.

      Therefore, the definition of gelatin that I included from their website appears to cover the many different products that they have from both beef and pork, but these versions only include beef.

      Here is proof of their kosher certificate for both green and red versions: http://www.greatlakesgelatin.com/business/docs/KosherCert2013.pdf.

      • When I went on Amazon to purchase the gelatin, there was a beef version and a pork version, both in orange. I almost bought the pork version until I read the reviews. They put it on the bottle in tiny lettering.

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  3. Hi – it appears you’ve amended some of the post to clarify the gelatin. I wanted to let you know that your first picture in the post states:
    *starring colagen hydrolysate
    Isn’t that the green can that doesn’t gel?

    Also, a photo near the recipe says ‘3 ingredients’. I see two, just the gelatin & fruit. Do I need something else to be successful with this recipe?
    It looks great & I finally got some gelatin (red can) to begin trying some of these wonderful fruit snack type recipes. I liked the look of yours because it uses whole fruit not just juice.
    Looking forward to your reply! :-)

    • Hi Brenda!

      Yes, I did clarify some things on the gelatin. The green can does not gel, but the red can does gel. Both are kosher gelatins, otherwise known as collagen. The green can is specifically collagen hydrolysate, which is hydrolyzed collagen. This means it has undergone a chemical process where it’s “…either heated to a high temperature or enzymatically treated to reduce the ‘Molecular weight’ which limits its ability to congeal.”

      However, the hydrolysis does mean that the red can doesn’t share the same wonderful properties of cell regeneration, healing, etc. as the green can. Both are still collagen.

      As far as the 3 ingredients, I was referring to the strawberries, raspberries, and the gelatin. :) If you count the fruit puree as 1 ingredient, than I guess it would be 2, however, I used 3 ingredients in mine. :)

      I hope you are successful in making them – they are delicious and really simple! Thanks for reading. :)

  4. Hello, I’m Italian and I can’t find powdered gelatin here, I find it in leafs, coud you tell me in weight how much gelatin you use please. I’d love to try your recipe.
    Thanks a lot.

    • Hi there! You should be able to find it in a local health food store; it may be derived from pork, which is okay unless you have allergic or religious beliefs that don’t agree with that… As far as the conversion to grams, 4-5 tablespoons = about 57 – 71 grams! Thanks for reading!

  5. I live in the UK and can’t order from amazon.com (Great Lakes isn’t available from amazon.co.uk). Does anyone know where I can get Great Lakes gelatin over here? Or can recommend another brand? Thanks

    • Go to your local health food store – they should have some there! When I live abroad in Germany, I buy organic gelatin from a local health food store here. It is from pork, but still is beneficial and organic. :)

  6. So you don’t have to mix the gelatin with water before adding it to the puree? I’ve had some problems with the gelatin not mixing so well with hot soups when added directly. It tends to settle and gel at the bottom of the bowl. No problem when I mix with water and then add to a hot liquid.

    • It’s your call! I just heated the fruit puree and mixed in the gelatin on the stove until it dissolved. If you prefer mixing it in water – go for it! Adding a bit of water will make it a less concentrated consistency, which some people prefer.

    • Great question! I don’t think it have the same gelatin-like consistency, to the point where you could cut out squares. I think it would taste more like fruit pudding or jam? Let me know if you try it and like it!

  7. i made these today, and they came out really rubbery-is that how they are supposed to be? the only change i made was to add a little coconut sugar to add a bit of sweetness, and i used all strawberries.

    • Hi there! If you prefer a less rubbery consistency, feel free to add a bit of water to make it less concentrated. Mine turned out pretty concentrated, but I love them that way! Let me know what you think!

      • thanks, i think next time i will add some water, or perhaps lemon juice as i’ve seen mentioned in similar recipes. it still tastes good, but really is drier and tougher than i was hoping for!

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  14. Hello,
    We don’t consume gelatin any longer in my home. Would the Agar-Agar or the Carrageenan? I have both here.

    • Hi! You should be able to use Agar-Agar in place of gelatin. I’d stay away from carrageenan, because there are controversial studies that it’s linked to inflammation and cancer. :)

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  16. I have 2 batches chilling in the fridge now, one strawberry/raspberry almost done, one mango/berry halfway there. I did add lemon juice and a bit of vanilla, and I used frozen fruit. I wanted mine sweeter, so I added a couple of packs of monkfruit powder. Looking good so far… just have to cut them!

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