Dr. Becky Maes - Is It Bad For You? Approved by Dr. Becky Maes

Is Jelly Bad For You?

Also Known As: jam, marmalade



Short answer

Jelly containing high amounts of artificial sugar or high fructose corn syrup can be detrimental to one’s health. Jelly that does not contain high fructose corn syrup and is low in sugar, on the other hand, can be excellent for one’s health.



Recommended Alternative

Long answer

Jelly is a substance commonly used as a sandwich spread that is made from fruit juice, pectin (which works as a gelling agent), and a form of sweetener (natural or artificial). There are several ways to make jelly, so the health benefits and risks vary. Generally speaking, jelly is not a huge health concern. Considering the typical serving size of jelly is too small to have a noticeable positive impact on your health, it is also most likely too small to have a negative impact. Therefore, for most people, jelly is a way to make something more flavorful without having to worry about gaining weight or experiencing any side effects.

There are benefits to eating jelly that has no high fructose corn syrup. The benefits come primarily through the fruit and provide the body with vital nutrients, help maintain weight while satiating one’s hunger, help the body form red blood cells, etc. Furthermore, pectin is a fiber and is used medicinally to treat high cholesterol and helps prevent and treat some forms of cancer. The downside to jelly is that if high in HFCS or sugar content (other than natural sugar from the fruit), there are risks including diabetes, tooth decay, weight gain, and increased triglyceride levels. When overconsumed, pectin also has the potential to block minerals, such as zinc and potassium, from entering the bloodstream and cause irritation of the bowels.

Possible short-term side effects

  • bloating
  • diarrhea
  • blood sugar spike

Possible long-term side effects

  • tooth decay
  • weight gain
  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • increased triglycerides

Ingredients to be aware of


  • natural jelly can:
  • provide vital nutrients
  • enhance satiety
  • help prevent cancer
  • lower "bad" cholesterol
  • promote healthy skin

Healthier alternatives

  • natural jelly
  • crushed berries

Our Wellness Pick (what is this?)

Crofters Raspberry Spread

  • Organic ingredients
  • Premium quality
  • Rich in flavor
  • Non-GMO verified
  • 16.5 Oz jar
Learn More!

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Healthy Living 35
Published on: 12-29-2015
Last updated: 12-01-2023

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Healthy Living 35
Published on: 12-29-2015
Last updated: 12-01-2023

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