Bone Broth - All It’s Cracked Up To Be?
Remember when Grandma would always have a big pot of broth or stock simmering, filling the kitchen with the enchanting aroma of chicken soup?
Well, move over dehydrating, overstimulating afternoon coffee – because there’s a new “addiction” in town!
Not only does a cup of hot broth provide good “warmth factor”, but when prepared through simple old school, traditional cooking, you’ll not only be amply hydrated, but well nourished with many valuable minerals and a hefty dose of high quality protein - thanks to its rich amino acid profile.
You can see why it’s now become a staple in both the Paleo- and Keto-type diet regimes.
Here are 8 more benefits of drinking this mineral-rich health elixir…
- Good for gut health - the key components, like protein-rich gelatin (i.e. “cooked collagen”) and Glutamine (an important amino acid), help to heal and protect the lining of the digestive tract. A healthy, well protected mucosal lining aids in the body’s absorption of key nutrients.
- Boosts immunity - It’s not widely known that much of our immune system is intimately linked to the health of our gut. If the gut is healthy, we would naturally have a stronger immune system.
But, did you know that chicken soup also has a boosting effect on white blood cells (our infection-fighters), and it stimulates antioxidant activity in the body, namely the action of glutathione, considered a “master antioxidant”.
So, be sure to get the whole family drinking broth this cold & flu season!
- Better joint health, increased bone density, and healthier hair, skin AND nails?!
The Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulphate in broth can stimulate new collagen growth to help repair damaged joints. Plus, an abundance of the pro-cartilage amino acids Glycine and Proline have an anti-inflammatory effect -- good news for arthritis sufferers.
(Did you know that collagen makes up HALF of the protein in our bodies?!)
Also, minerals like Calcium, Magnesium & Phosphorus that are leached out of the animal bones are readily absorbed by the body (= increased bioavailability) and are critical to bone growth & repair.
Additionally, bone broth offers plenty of Hyaluronic Acid, and gelatin (aka “cooked collagen”) - both are key players in promoting less wrinkled skin, shiny hair and strong nails.
- Promotes relaxation & sleep - try a cup of broth before bed as both Magnesium & Glycine can have a very calming effect, promoting muscle relaxation and deeper, more restorative sleep. (= calm + rejuvenation + zzzzzz)
- More affordable whole food supplement - rather than taking handfuls of expensive supplements & protein powders, why not try a daily cuppa broth instead?
It’s certainly the most affordable way to “bulletproof” your day!
So, bone broth...is it all it’s cracked up to be?
I think this is one healthy food trend that it’s safe to take a crack at and reap the benefits! Here’s how to make your own broth at home - and it’s probably so much easier than you think too!
By the way, when it comes to natural gut healing ability, as well as all the other benefits we’ve mentioned, store-bought tetrapak broths are not made the same way, and do not contain the same nutrients.
They do, on the other hand, often contain loads of salt, fillers and MSG (usually labeled as yeast extract), but that’s a topic for another post 😉
HOMEMADE BONE BROTH
- In a big stock pot, add water to just cover bones -- use pastured (grass-fed) animal bones, preferably organic if possible.
- Then add in any of the following fresh veggies, organic when possible:
- whole onions
- entire heads of garlic
- huge handful of parsley
- big chunks of celery & carrots (washed, but unpeeled)
- dried seaweed
- seasonings such as sea salt, bay leaves & peppercorns
Add a big splash of unpasteurized apple cider vinegar (acetic acid) to help break down and leach out all the minerals from the bones.
Then simmer the broth on low for up to 24 hours – some people do it for up to 48 hours.
Throughout the cooking process, skim off any foam and add water as needed to top up.
When the stock is finished simmering, filter through a fine sieve and bottle in glass mason jars (or other non-plastic/heat-safe vessels). Cool before screwing top on and putting in fridge.
The broth will keep in the fridge for about a week and up to a month in the freezer - and should set just like gelatin, and the fat should rise to the top. Scrape off the fat and set aside for cooking, then scoop out the gelled broth and reheat to serve as soup.
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