Jam Benefits + Side Effects

By Adriane Marie •  Updated: 03/03/22 •  8 min read
jam benefits and side effects

HEALTH

Energy: jam is good for / helps curb hunger, reduce constipation (when sugar free) | jam is bad for / increases the risk of energy crashes (when sugar is added)
Longevity: jam is good for / helps decrease bone loss, detoxification, fight and prevent cancer, heart health, reduce the chance of developing cancer, reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, reduce the risk of stroke, heart attack and all other potential cardiovascular diseases (sugar free jams made with chunks of fruit) | jam is bad for / increases the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease (when sugar is added)
Appearance: jam is good for / helps improve hair, skin and fingernail health, maintain a healthy weight (when sugar-free) jam is bad for / increases the risk of obesity, weight gain (when sugar is added)

Jam is typically…

ENVIRONMENT

Water footprint: likely low, 967 liters of water used to produce 1 kilogram of fruits / 116 gallons of water used to produce 1 pound of fruits
Carbon footprint: low, 0.9 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of fruits, a car driving equivalent of 2 miles or 3.25 kilometers
Destruction: low, jam production is relatively sustainable, there is no known significant damage to air, water, land, soil, forests, etc. as long as pesticides have not been used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc.

Jam is typically…

ANIMALS

Animals killed:

none, jam production does not require any animals to be killed

Animals harmed:

none, jam production does not require any animals to be used

Animals indirectly killed or harmed:

none, no animals are indirectly killed or harmed from jam production as long as toxic chemicals have not been used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as pesticides harm and kill wildlife and ecosystems by contaminating soil, water, air and plants that animals eat

Jam is typically…

LABORERS

Health and safety: varies, overall, agriculture continues to be one of the most dangerous industries, farmworkers may be subject to dehydration, heat stroke, unprotected exposure to harmful, toxic chemicals and pesticides, unsafe machinery and clean drinking water may not always accessible
Living conditions: varies, laborers are often exploited, they may face tough working conditions including long hours in the sun and heat performing physically exhausting tasks, labor laws and rights may or may not be in place, even if worker protection exists, employer violations may go unreported, refugees and migrant workers are especially vulnerable to abuse and mistreatment, fearing consequences of job loss or deportation
Wages: varies, generally farmworkers earn meager wages, there are many cases of underpaid agricultural workers, wage theft and no overtime payment or benefits

Jam…

jam is acidic.

acidic foods and alkaline diet to improve ph levels

Is jam alkaline or acidic? Jam is acidic. What is the pH level of jam? Jam has a 4.5 pH level once digested.

When you eat food, it is broken down to an ash residue that can be neutral, acidic or alkaline. Minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, zinc, silver, copper and iron produce an alkaline ash; whereas sulfur, phosphorus, chlorine and iodine, which are found in meat, coffee, dairy and alcohol, leave an acid ash.

Going alkaline easier than ever with this: Acidic and Alkaline Foods List

jam may or may not be gluten free.

gluten free foods and what to eat on a gluten free diet

Is jam gluten free? Possibly. Jam may or may not be gluten free. Jam is usually made from fruit and sugar but may contain glutinous ingredients. Be sure to check individual brand labelling and ingredients to determine whether jam is gluten free.

While celiac disease may not be as rampant as many marketing trends lead us to believe, you may have a gluten sensitivity…

Celiac and gluten sensitivity symptoms are similar and may include:

There are hundreds of potential symptoms, many of which are also symptoms of other conditions.

Going gluten-free easier than ever with this: Gluten and Gluten Free Foods List

jam is typically not a common food allergen.

the most common food allergens include milk, wheat, soy, fish, tree nuts, peanuts, eggs and crustaceans

Is jam a common food allergen? No, jam typically does not contain any common food allergens. Some people may experience allergic reactions to jam but it is relatively rare by comparison.

A group of the eight major allergenic foods, AKA the Big-8, include:

These foods account for about 90% of all food allergies in the United States.

Severe food allergies can be life threatening. Following ingestion of a food allergen, a person with food allergies can experience a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. 

Persons may still be allergic to and have serious reactions to foods other than the eight foods identified by the law.

Be aware of common dietary restrictions and food allergens with this: The Big 8 Most Common Food Allergens List

jam is typically vegan unless white sugar or refined sugar has been added.

vegan food to eat on a vegan diet

Is jam vegan? Yes, jam is typically vegan unless white sugar or refined sugar has been added.

According to Sentient Media, “more than 200 million land animals are killed for food around the world every day. Including wild-caught and farmed fishes, we get a total closer to 3 billion animals killed daily.”

Animals of factory farms and the livestock industry are suffering. They live in horrific conditions that often include confinement, physical abuse and unnatural environments…so much so that they need to receive antibiotics to keep from getting ill or spreading disease. They’re also injected with growth hormones to become fatter faster and live short lives, being slaughtered as soon as they finish growing and are killed prematurely, well before their natural lifespan.

Because we cannot see for ourselves how these animals live and what they endure does not mean it isn’t happening. The meat, poultry and dairy industries do everything they can to distance us from knowing how our food comes to be in order to keep us in the dark about what we support each time we buy animal derived products and byproducts.

Go vegan for animals!

It’s the best way to help animals and it’s not as difficult as you may think. Speak for animals with your actions, for they cannot speak at all.

Going vegan is easier than ever, at a glance with this: Vegan and Non Vegan Foods List

jam may or may not be sustainable.

sustainable shopping, for eco friendly brands and products good for the environment

Overall, is jam eco friendly? Is jam sustainable?

Jam production is may or may not be sustainable.

A 2018 Oxford University study – which is the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet – found that ‘avoiding meat and dairy is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on Earth’ as animal farming provides just 18% of calories but takes up 83% of our farmland.

Consuming animal products and byproducts is not environmentally friendly and is one of the worst things for the Earth. Not only is meat production wasteful, it causes enormous amounts of pollution. The industry is one of the biggest causes of climate change.

A 2010 United Nations report said that a global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the world the worst impacts of climate change.

jam may have labor issues and human rights concerns.

labor rights, human rights and workers rights issues

Is jam a product with laborer concerns?

At this time there are no major concerns with jam production but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening!

It’s important to stay aware of human rights concerns and worker exploitation that may be associated with specific brands.

Did you know the single largest employer in the world is agriculture? The labor involved behind each and every product cannot go unrecognized. 

Sadly, many labor concerns exist around the world in both developed and developing countries. We must be vigilant to ensure what we buy is not contributing to industries that are unfair to their valuable workers. Some known problems include workplace health and safety, child labor, gender inequality, inadequate pay, wage theft and exploitation. Workers can even experience harassment, humiliation and violence and unfair employers often fail to provide laborers with access to shade, drinking water, restrooms and breaks. Consequently, laborers can face nausea, dizziness, heat exhaustion, dehydration and heat stroke -the leading cause of farmworker death! 

Such mistreatment is like modern day slavery. Workers are often afraid to report issues because they fear it will result in losing their jobs or deportation. 

Fair trade organizations fight to ensure better social, environmental and economic standards. 

We can improve people’s lives with foods we eat every day simply by buying products that are certified fair trade. 

Sources:

United States Standards for Grades of Fruit Preserves (Jams)

Labelling of jam and similar products | Business and economy

Jam and Similar Products Regulations 2003 – Food Standards

Luna Grown: jam

Adriane Marie

As an educator, author and conscious consumer advocate, I study and organize ethical info for you to quickly see how our purchases impact animals, people and the planet. I hope you find this HEALabel knowledge useful and can apply it to your life for personal and societal improvement and empowerment.