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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Gelatin: The Weight Loss Secret Revealed

The ad in the paper said ‘Lose 30 pounds in 6 weeks!’
That got my attention. I’d been trying to lose the ‘baby fat’ I gained with my last daughter for the past 20 years. It was time to admit defeat and seek professional help.
I paid for the program, a month’s supply of vitamins, minerals, herbs, and protein supplements the company insisted were essential for weight loss, and got the right mind set. 
I tried. Really, I did. I filled out my food journal; took twenty-six pills a day; made sure all my meals were high protein, low carb (protein: the key to weight loss) made in my own kitchen and from their list of 'approved foods;' drank 3 to 4 of their protein supplements every day; exercised moderately and came in twice a week (80 miles round trip) for my weigh-in and evaluation/pep talk. 
Ugh. Their clear protein drinks were okay, but the creamy ones were nasty. Plus that was a lot of pills to choke down.
Those products weren’t cheap, either. Add the cost of pills and supplements to the hundreds of dollars I paid upfront for their consult fee and I’m telling you, an all-expenses paid trip to Hawaii would have been cheaper!
To make it worse I was tired and hungry all the time. Yes, I lost eight pounds those first two weeks, but then the weight loss stopped. I was tired, hungry and depressed. The counselors changed my diet twice. I actually gained half a pound! Now I was ANGRY, tired, hungry and depressed. When I told the counselor how dire the depression was, she laughed at me!
Screw it!
I stopped taking their pills, ignored the food diary, concocted my own protein supplements, ate chocolate cake at my granddaughter’s birthday and lost 2 ½ pounds that week.
I checked in at the clinic to rub my weight loss in their faces and was told, ‘Oh, it may take a few days for those extra calories to show up as weight gain.’
Nope. Those pounds are still gone.

I did learn something for all that money, though. I checked out the ingredients: all of the weight loss clinic’s sweet supplements were made with hydrolyzed gelatin and Splenda™. The soups  were gelatin-based, too, but skipped the sweetener.
Lesson learned: gelatin is a great (and very inexpensive) source of protein. Their source has 15 grams per serving. Their cost is approximately $1.85 per serving, three to four servings a day suggested intake.
Gelatin has 12.9 grams per tablespoon of dried powder. A one pound jar of gelatin has about 453 servings. At $17.09 a jar (price I pay online), that's less than 5 cents a serving!! And if you think egg whites are better, realize that gelatin is higher in protein, cheaper, and easier to incorporate into your diet.  

If you want to up your protein for (easy, cheap) weight loss, try this. It may work for you, too.

First basic rule you need to know is: powdered gelatin needs to be dissolved in cold water first. It only takes a couple of minutes for the cream-colored granules to ‘bloom.’ This blob then needs to be stirred into very hot liquid. From there you can add it to any variety of drinks, soups, or desserts.

First thing in the morning protein pick me up
1 Tbsp gelatin (equivalent to 1 packet of Knox brand)
¼ cup cold water
Sprinkle gelatin over cold water and let sit for a couple of minutes. I use a custard dish so there’s more surface area for the powder to contact
Slip this mixture into your hot coffee or tea and stir.
That’s it! I make a cappuccino with cream and cinnamon. No sugar required for me. The gelatin makes it creamer and helps fill me up before breakfast. Less chance of overeating this way, too.
Chocolate pudding
1 Tbsp gelatin
¼ cup cold water
Sprinkle gelatin over cold water and let sit for a couple of minutes.
2 tsp cocoa powder
2 tsp sugar
Pinch of salt (makes the sugar sweeter and rounds out the flavor)
(optional: a few drops of vanilla and/or dash of cinnamon)
1/3 cup warm water
Stir the cocoa, sugar, salt, water (and other optional ingredients) together in a Magic Bullet™ cup. Nuke for 30 seconds in the microwave.
Add gelatin blob. Stir until blended. Add 1 tablespoon of cream or half and half. Stir again.
Add 5-7 ice cubes. Put Magic Bullet lid on, shake to pre-mix, and then blend until the ice cubes are gone.

Depending on how much ice was used and the temperature of the mix, you’ll either have instant pudding-in-the-cup or have to wait 5 to 10 minutes for full ‘set.’ I tried stirring everything together (no processor) and it worked just as well. A few bits of ice cube were left but they soon disappeared.
By using cream or half and half instead of milk, you’re reducing the amount of carbs. If you use Splenda instead of sugar, you’re even lower on the carb scale, but you may get rebound and want more sweets. Sugar satisfies; artificial sweeteners make me want more.

You can use this same basic principle of using dissolved gelatin in hot liquid for many ‘snacks.’ Add to canned soup, bouillon, teas, or even your own version of puddings using flavored coffee or soda syrups. 
The calories are negligible and the satisfaction is great…especially when you step on the scales and see you’ve lost 2 ½ pounds by eating pudding!

Note: gelatin is also supposed to help reduce joint pain and make your fingernails and hair thicker. Let me know if gelatin helps you in any way and I’ll share with others. Slurp on!

 Evie had a faster way to lose weight (and years), but I don't know of any fountain of youth water for sale in this century.
If you're looking for a rather lengthy time travel romance, check out Naked in the Winter Wind.


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