Gelatin for Skin - Mother Nature's Youth Serum
Gelatin for Skin Health - Healing Gourmet

Gelatin for Skin – Mother Nature’s Youth Serum

by Kelley Herring on February 17, 2015

It has people lining up in New York City’s Brodo to buy a steamy $9 cup… it is being called “the natural alternative to Botox”… and it is allegedly Gwyneth Paltrow’s “new obsession.”


Gwyneth Paltrow is allegedly is a big fan of bone broth. I’ll have what she’s having!

You might assume that this wrinkle-fighting, age-defying food is a new discovery from the Amazon rainforest or a remote peak high in the Himalayas. Not true. In fact, there is a good chance that your great grandmother made this timeless superfood in a stockpot with little more than what most people consider “scraps.”

If you haven’t already guessed, I’m talking about bone broth

Gelatin for Skin – How Does it Fight Wrinkles?

In my previous article on gelatin, I shared the many ways that consuming gelatin-rich bone broth can defy aging and promote healing. It can stimulate a variety of biochemical activities that can reduce inflammation, boost detoxification and keep us feeling young.

And while we all want to feel young, there’s no doubt we want to look young too.

It’s not breaking news that the beauty industry is big business. In fact, Botox alone – the muscle-paralyzing injection made from botulism toxin – grosses nearly $2 billion a year. The industry as whole – including creams, potions, serums and other forms of cosmetic surgery – is estimated at nearly $60 billion annually.

But the beauty and youthfulness of your skin is much less dependent on what you put on the outside. Far more important is what you’re doing to nourish the inside.

Of course, proper hydration is vital. It is also important to get sufficient high-quality protein and healthy fats. But when it comes to wrinkles, the story goes a bit deeper…

Your skin has a unique matrix structure that gives it elasticity and tone in our youth. In this network are numerous players, including three which play starring roles:

  1. Collagen: Known as the “beauty protein”, collagen is the main structural protein of connective tissue. The amino acids glycine and proline are its principal components.
  2. Elastin: As the name suggests, it provides skin with its elasticity, allowing it to snap back when pinched or pulled. Elastin has the ability to sustain “mechanical resilience” – meaning that it can extend and recoil billions of times. Researchers believe that it is the unique cross-linking of glycine, proline, leucine and valine, that give elastin this property.
  3. Proteoglycans: These compounds are made of proteins and sugars. They are designed to attract and retain water. Proteoglycans weave around the collagen network, giving it tensile structure.

A strong network that’s well-hydrated and elastic results in a “plump” fresh-looking complexion.

And here’s where gelatin comes in…

Glycine and Proline – The Common Denominators for a Beautiful Complexion

As you just read, producing and preserving our collagen and elastin are essential for a strong matrix that gives skin a smooth and youthful appearance. And the two key amino acids for building and maintaining collagen and elastin are: glycine and proline.

And can you guess the food richest in glycine and proline? That’s right. Gelatin.

It’s no wonder that anti-aging specialists are recommending gelatin to their patients and clients. It works.

Julia March, a bone broth advocate and well-known therapist to Hollywood celebrities says:

My clients see less inflammation, more glow and more toned skin when they drink it. It repairs, strengthens, rejuvenates and heals.

Did you know that gelatin contains powerful wrinkle-fighting compounds? Learn more about staying young with food.

Making Wrinkle-Fighting Gelatin Recipes

Drinking bone broth daily – made from grass-fed, pastured soup bones, feet and backs – is the best way to get more healing gelatin in your diet. Slow-cooking or pressure cooking meat on the bone and enjoying the broth that accompanies the dish is another great way to sneak more of those wrinkle-fighting amino acids into your diet.

A great way to have this healing tonic on hand is to make a big batch and freeze it individual portions. The Instant Pot pressure cooker will help extract more gelatin from bones and connective tissues, making your money go a bit farther.

Even when you buy the highest quality ingredients to make bone broth, you’re still looking at cents per serving for Mother Nature’s original youth serum.

Are you drinking bone broth? We want to hear the many creative ways you’re incorporating this ancestral food into your modern healing diet.

Gelatin for Skin -Mother Nature's Youth Serum
Article Name
Gelatin for Skin -Mother Nature's Youth Serum
It's being called "Mother Nature's Youth Serum" and a Botox Alternative. Learn all about the anti-aging benefits of gelatin for skin here!
1.Danile, Kaayla. Why Broth is Beautiful: Essential Roles for Proline, Glycine and Gelatin. Weston A. Price Foundation. 2.François-Xavier Maquart, Stéphane Brézillon, Yanusz Wegrowski. Proteoglycans in Skin Aging. Textbook of Aging Skin 2010, pp 109-120 3.Fred W Keeley, Catherine M Bellingham, and Kimberley A Woodhouse Elastin as a self-organizing biomaterial: use of recombinantly expressed human elastin polypeptides as a model for investigations of structure and self-assembly of elastin. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2002 Feb 28; 357(1418): 185–189. 4.Kielty CM, Sherratt MJ, Shuttleworth CA (July 2002). "Elastic fibres". J. Cell. Sci. 115 (Pt 14): 2817–28. PMID 12082143. 5.Carrino DA1, Onnerfjord P, Sandy JD, Cs-Szabo G, Scott PG, Sorrell JM, Heinegård D, Caplan AI. Age-related changes in the proteoglycans of human skin. Specific cleavage of decorin to yield a major catabolic fragment in adult skin. J Biol Chem. 2003 May 9;278(19):17566-72. Epub 2003 Mar 5. 6.Tzaphlidou M1. The role of collagen and elastin in aged skin: an image processing approach. Micron. 2004;35(3):173-7.

About The Author

Kelley Herring, founder of Healing Gourmet, is a natural nutrition enthusiast with a background in biochemistry. Her passion is educating on how foods promote health and protect against disease and creating simple and delicious recipes for vibrant health and enjoyment.

Kelley Herring – who has written posts on Healing Gourmet.

About Kelley Herring

Kelley Herring, founder of Healing Gourmet, is a natural nutrition enthusiast with a background in biochemistry. Her passion is educating on how foods promote health and protect against disease and creating simple and delicious recipes for vibrant health and enjoyment.


  1. Foot Doctor says:

    Try using pigs’ and goats’ feet for gelatin. There is so much gelatin in them that if left standing for a few hours it will coagulate like jelly.

  2. How about eating Great Lakes Gelatin (Collagen Hydrolysate)? Less hassel?

    • What about the other forms ,powdered or sheet gelatine ? Are they any good? I am aware they come from non-grass fed animals.My father ate pigs trotters when we were children ,I don’t think I can look at them now! What about Brawn -meet pressed with the jelly?

    • Kelley Herring says:

      Hi Nancy,
      This is a great question and I just answered it on another post here –

      “I use Great Lake collagen and gelatin – I think they are the highest quality powdered gelatin/collagen products on the market.

      With that being said, I am a firm believer that the nutritional value of fresh-made bone broth from grass-fed/pastured animals has more benefits than gelatin/collagen supplements can offer.

      When we consume bone broth we are getting a wide array of nutrients, fats, fat-soluble vitamins and other constituents (like powerful alkylglycerols) thanks to the bone marrow.

      For more on the health benefits of bone marrow, please check out my post here-

      Hope this helps!

      Be Well,

    • Oh yuck! My Mother used to put gelatin in our juice in th morning when we were young. We used to have apricot juice lot and to this day I can’t look at apricot juice.

      • I know what you mean about the Knox gelatin we used to use, Kathae. But the Great Lakes Collagen dissolves really well and you wouldn’t even know it’s in there.

        • Great, I could use all the help I can get!

        • I just ordered some. I use gelatin for a lot of things anyway, so will try this. Around here it is very difficult to get anything bone in. I like to have the bone, because it adds more flavor to the meat. I like the skin on as well, but I don’t eat it, I just use it for the flavor. By the way for the commenter who didn’t like the use of pigs feet, there is nothing better than pickled pigs feet.

  3. Are you seriously promoting killing animals for VANITY? Truely morally bankrupt, you fit into the category of “humans are the rulers of everything on earth and can do whatever the hell they want to any other living sentient creature on this planet”

    Beyond superficial!

    • Vivenne, I understand if you are horrified at the thought of people eating animals. However, I feel that if one is going to eat an animal, none of it should be wasted. By using the bones to make bone broth, it prevents them from being thrown in the trash or given to the dog. Perhaps you should not follow a Paleo inspired blog.

      • Kelley Herring says:

        Thank you, Nancy.

        I am with you 100% on “nothing wasted”. There are so many uses and benefits to all parts. It is refreshing to see more and more people embracing nose-to-tail eating and really connecting with the cycle of life.

        Be Well,

      • tina burns says:

        Awesome answer!! No waste of any part is actually like a “thank you” to the animal. We honor them by using every bit for something.

    • Kelley Herring says:

      Hi Vivienne,
      If the choice to consume animals for food is bothersome to you, please don’t visit Healing Gourmet. We are not a vegan blog.

      With that being said, we firmly believe in the ethical treatment of all animals and encourage our readers to seek out farmers who raise their animals right.

      You may also be interested in reading this post about recovering from vegetarianism and the numerous nutritional issues with that way of eating:

      Finally, why don’t you think plants are sentient? There is good evidence otherwise:

      Be Well,


      • Kelly you Rock!!
        Of course theres a place for everyone!
        }Why bother to throw garbage here??
        Thank you for all your work and the great info you give
        Cheers from Chile!!

    • We kill the animals for food and make good, responsible use of all of the parts.

    • Jon Herring says:

      No, Vivienne, we promote harvesting animals (and vegetables, berries, nuts, seeds, fruit and other delicious things) for food. And for the amazing health benefits that whole foods (including animal foods) can provide. The youth-enhancing, disease fighting aspects of some foods are a nice bonus. Nothing to do with vanity. Just a simple matter of survival and longevity.

      If you have made the choice not to eat meat for ethical reasons, we certainly support your decision. There is a lot of information and many recipes on Healing Gourmet that have nothing to do with animal products of any kind. And while I have no reason to want to change your views, I would remind you that death is part of life. In the natural world, death begets life (whether you are talking about plants or animals). The lion is not evil for killing the zebra. Nor are humans evil for consuming meat. Although the way that livestock is treated in our industrial farming system is more than deplorable. That is why Healing Gourmet strongly objects to factory farmed meat and always recommend pastured animals. We strongly support farmers who respect the animals they raise. Look up Joel Salatin as an example of a farmer who deeply loves and respects the animals he raises (for food) and works tirelessly to ensure that their lives are enriched by their environment.

      In closing, Vivienne, do you own a cat? Do you feed it cat food? If so, you are responsible for the death of animals. If you do not feed it “cat food” or fish, meat or other forms of animal protein, then you are abusing that animal. Do you share your life with any companion animals? What do you feed them?

    • Not sure why there is always an angry tone to the comments of the intolerant. Our world is large and the animal kingdom which humans are a part of is as well. To unnaturally protect any group of animals puts their lives in danger of a very cruel death through starvation or disease.

    • Jon Herring says:

      This might not seem like the most appropriate article on which to post this information… but it does apply directly to the comments here. Believe it or not, researchers have discovered that deer and cows may not be the gentle vegans we always thought they were. Here is the article:

      “This behavior is not limited to one species or one continent. Last year, a farmer in India made a video of a cow eating a recently-hatched chick. Some scientists speculate that herbivores turn to meat when they’re not getting enough nutrients in their diet. It’s possible. A biologist in Scotland documented red deer eating seabird chicks, and concluded it was how they got the dietary boost necessary to grow their antlers. The same researcher also documented sheep eating the heads and legs off of seabird chicks. And then there’s another cow in India, which reportedly ate fifty chickens. There may be a specific need that drives herbivores to occasionally eat meat. It’s also possible, experts say, that eating meat, when it can’t run away from them, is just something supposed “herbivores” do, and we’re finally getting wise to it.”

  4. Hi there, I don’t know why these vegans always get upset with people who eat meat. God allows us to do so, read Genesis chapter 9 vers 3. And there you have it.

  5. Jennifer Johnson says:

    Vegans love to troll – apparently they have nothing better to do. I myself raise & humanely harvest my own animals on pasture and make use of most everything from nose to tail. Bone broth is an incredible food with many benefits – the fact that it helps with skin tone and wrinkles is just a bonus. Just a thought do meat eating Paleo peeps waste their time trolling vegan sites?? I wouldn’t – Thanks for the great article – I have reposted to our farm FB page

  6. I tried the Great Lake hydrolized can and it didn’t work very well. Everyone says it dissolves easily in drinks but I tried putting it in my coffee and it was clumpy and tasted a little like leather. I still believe that there is nutritional value to adding collagen to your diet, so I ordered the Custom Collagen hydrolized gelatin and it is soooo much better! It dissolved completely and has no taste. It’s also cheaper, so I liked that and it comes with a measuring scoop. I think it’s still to early to realize any results but thanks for the article!

  7. Linda Lisak says:

    I wanted to compliment your response to Vivienne. There was such anger in her comment. I can understand being upset with how animals are treated; and I also am grieved by how many humans are treated too. Anger just drains us of energy that might be used in a positive manner. However, I would be a bit fearful to follow the diet this person is on if it makes one that angry. I’m not being sarcastic; I think we can all live in peace. But as it was stated, death is a part of nature. All one has to do is live in the country and observe.

  8. Stephen Smith says:

    Good article. I first learned about this from the book, “Sip Away Your Wrinkles.” I’m a man in my 60s, and I think it has made a definite difference in appearance. I get comments from people who are surprised when they learn my age.

  9. I make chicken bone broth almost every week and add it to other foods I cook. Two months ago I purchased the Instant Pot recommended by Kelley and love it. I love having the BEST bone broth ever in just a few hours! What’s really good is to cook the batch of bone broth with the bones of two chickens….extra delicious.

    Recently my beautiful Golden Retriever dog acquired worms….as I googled natural ways to take care of this problem I read that some real vegetables, like grated carrots, a bit of coconut oil and bone broth added to her regular food could help heal her gut. She loves it and it has healed this problem! Yea!

    Thanks for all your great tips on just about everything! And thank you for your great creation of the Crusty Boule bread recipe … is still one of my favorites!

    • Kelley Herring says:

      Hi Linda,
      I’m so thrilled that you are loving the Instant Pot. It is my favorite kitchen tool, by far, and has totally streamlined my meal plan game.

      And oh, the bone broth! With the Instant Pot the bone broth is just an amazingly nutritious by-product of so many standard meals (whole chicken, bone-in meats). I feel really great about knowing I’m extracting all of the goodness and wasting nothing when I make an Instant Pot meal – true nose-to-tail eating.

      Thanks for your kind comments. I look forward to hearing more about your culinary adventures with the Instant Pot!

      Be Well,

  10. Can anyone speak to the effectiveness of Bone Broth produced by a company called “Pacific Foods”. The container I have says “Organic Bone Broth” from Chicken bones. Is bone broth more effective than gelatin made by Great Lakes at keeping our skin from wrinkling? Plus…anyone know how much bone broth we need daily to keep our skin from wrinkling?

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