Your Ultimate Guide to Bone Broth
Bone broth is getting a lot of attention at the moment – it is featured in health magazines, and people keep talking about this “new superfood” that is very nutrient-dense. So if you have questions like what is bone broth, or is bone broth good for you, we are here to help. Our ultimate guide to bone broth will teach you everything you need to know!
What is Bone Broth?
The popularity of bone broth rose in the last couple of years mostly because people are realizing how nutritious it really is. But not everyone has heard of it. So if you are wondering what exactly is bone broth, the answer is very simple – it is a broth made of bones which are rich in the bone marrow. It is different than standard stocks and broths which are made with vegetables, meats, seafood, etc. In today’s culture, animal bones are seen as a waste, but they aren’t. As a matter of fact, bone broth is an excellent source of collagen, vitamins, and minerals.
A typical stock or broth will not take you plenty of time to prepare. However, bone broth differs because you will need a whole day to cook it. After all, you are trying to get the nutrients from bones, and that takes time because it is hard to reach the marrow. So if you want all bone broth benefits, you need to be patient when preparing this meal.
History of Bone Broth
Bone broth has been around for quite some time. There is plenty of evidence that suggests bone broth was used in traditional Chinese medicine due to its incredible health benefits. The Chinese people acknowledged that bone broth nutrition is outstanding and they could get all the vitamins and minerals they need from this unlikely source. Plus, it was great for improving digestion and could help people suffering from anemia. However, the history of bone broth goes even further back in time.
Our hunter-gatherer ancestors started making bone broth because they didn’t want to waste a single piece from an animal. They wanted to use everything they could but were unable to figure out what to do with bones, hoves, etc. Our ancestors started cooking the so-called waste and discovered they could create a nutritious meal from these parts of an animal. And so, bone broth was created!
Is Bone Broth Good For You?
If you are wondering about the health benefits of bone broth, there are so many of them! Making bone broth from organic bones will do wonders for your general health. First of all, it is an excellent source of calcium and magnesium, and your body needs those minerals in order to function properly. Secondly, bone broth will provide you with potassium and amino acids. Finally, you will get natural collagen into your system. Collagen can keep your joints healthy, and it will do wonders for your skin. So the answer is yes, bone broth is good for you!
Health Benefits of Bone Broth
Many people are not fond of supplementation, but it might be hard for them to get all the nutrients they need on a daily basis. Luckily, bone broth is a natural source for several of them and can be regarded as a superfood.
Joint pain is an everyday struggle for many of us. It can be uncomfortable and might even decrease the quality of our life. Bone broth contains two nutrients that will help our bodies strengthen the joints and remove the pain. Those are glucosamine and collagen. They are used as supplements by professional athletes and bodybuilders in order to repair or prevent the damage to their joints.
Collagen is also an important factor when it comes to maintaining a healthy digestive system. It has the ability to keep your stomach lining in great condition. Glutamine can help heal and prevent leaky gut syndrome, while glycine will keep your stomach acid at a healthy level.
Skin / hair / nails
Hair and nails are made of protein. If you don’t get enough of protein, they can become weak, which will lead to dull hair without shine and nails which are prone to breaking. Bone broth does contain protein which will get your hair and nails healthy in no time. Skin, on the other hand, needs collagen to maintain elasticity. It is no wonder that collagen is used in the beauty industry to prevent wrinkles and fine lines. So bone broth can have skin benefits. If you want to have a flawless complexion, increase your collagen intake.
Boosting gut health
Bone broth is amazing when it comes to boosting gut health. It contains gelatin which will reduce any inflammation you might have in your stomach. Then, there is collagen which will repair your gut and help good bacteria thrive. And finally, we have L-glutamine which will keep your digestive system working properly. So if you are suffering from any type of gut problems such as constipation or diarrhea, bone broth diet could be the thing you need.
Amino acids found in bone broth can boost your immune system! They are crucial ingredients of proteins, and our bodies cannot function properly without them. As a matter of fact, we don’t absorb proteins properly when we are sick or very stressed. Therefore, we need amino acids to help us be healthier and more resistant to various illnesses.
We have already mentioned that bone broth contains glycine, but did you know it can also help your liver work properly? The liver is in charge of cleaning your body and getting rid of all the unnecessary waste. Glycine will also create antioxidants which will promote the detoxification of your whole body.
Amino acids can also decrease chronic inflammation caused by food, allergies, or even arthritis. These conditions will trigger our immune system to work overtime, and amino acids will maintain a healthy response to them. Keep in mind that bone broth contains glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate, which are usually found as supplements. But with bone broth, you can get them from a natural source.
More About Bone Broth Nutrition
Bone broth can be considered to be nature’s multivitamin. It is very low in calories but contains a lot of protein and amino acids. You can use bone broth for weight loss too! So here is a little bit more about bone broth nutrition.
Amino acids are essential when it comes to the synthesis of vitamins and minerals. Bone broth contains twenty essential amino acids, and they do wonders for our bodies. When you combine all the vitamins and minerals you get from bone broth with these amino acids, the results can be astonishing. They will heal your body from the inside and reduce any existing inflammation.
Our bodies need collagen to maintain healthy joints and bones, but there is an anti-aging aspect to it as well. Bones will release collagen when you simmer them, and collagen will create gelatin. This substance has the ability to help with aching joints. It will also give you shiny hair and flawless complexion. It will make your skin look younger and improve its structure by making it more elastic. So bone broth has skin benefits too!
Gelatin contains glycine as well. This amino acid will aid your digestion by breaking down the fats easily. So glycine will support your digestive health and keep your cholesterol levels at bay. It can be good for acid reflux and your pancreas.
You can find glucosamine in bones, so bone broth is an excellent natural source. Glucosamine will keep your joints flexible, and it can also reduce pain if you are experiencing any at the moment. So if you are having issues with your joints, this amino acid will relieve any discomfort you might be feeling.
Glutamine is yet another amino acid that supports a healthy gut. By following bone broth diet, you can rebuild the walls of your small intestine and promote healthy digestion. It is crucial when it comes to preventing leaky gut and other stomach related conditions.
As previously mentioned, collagen will give you healthier skin. But when you combine it with an amino acid called proline, the results will be even better. So heads up if you are interested in bone broth skin benefits! Proline can make your skin more elastic, which means it will prevent wrinkles and fine lines. It can also make your complexion more smooth, and reduce the appearance of the existing imperfections on your skin.
Bone broth benefits include reducing inflammation, and chondroitin is directly linked to that. As a matter of fact, you can purchase chondroitin as a supplement, but the price is quite high. It is recommended to people who are dealing with joint pain. Bone broth is naturally rich in chondroitin, and your body will be able to absorb it better.
Proteoglycans are used in the beauty industry because they have antioxidant properties and can actually strengthen your skin. This compound will improve the way your skin looks and make it more hydrated by delivering water to the cells. It can also reduce wrinkles, prevent aging, and stimulate collagen synthesis.
What Minerals Does Bone Broth Have?
Bone broth is incredibly rich in minerals that support the proper function of the human body. They are very important in maintaining the overall health of your organism. Keep in mind that you will need to add an acidic medium to your bone broth if you want to get these minerals out. So don’t forget to include a little bit of vinegar when making your broth.
Calcium is essential if you want to keep your bones strong. We need healthy bones to move properly, so if there is enough calcium in your diet, you can prevent osteoporosis and arthritis. This mineral will protect your heart muscles and help them work properly. Not to forget that you need calcium if you want to have good teeth and gums.
Magnesium is another mineral that will help you maintain healthy bones. As a matter of fact, calcium needs it in order to keep your skeletal system in great shape. If you meet your daily requirements of magnesium, your bones will be more dense and strong. Magnesium plays an important role in our bodies because it helps us digest the food. It can lower your chances of diabetes and make your stomach absorb the important nutrients from the food you eat.
This electrolyte is needed for muscle contractions, and it also helps with absorbing glucose. Sodium is important for your nervous system because it helps your body to send impulses. It can also balance out the fluids in your organism and get rid of any extra water your cells don’t need. Another interesting fact is that sodium is often found in anti-aging products and can act as an antioxidant. This means it can help you maintain a healthy complexion.
If you are having issues with your blood pressure, low potassium could be the reason because this mineral promotes cardiovascular health. Adding more potassium to your diet will make your heart stronger and help you keep your blood pressure within the normal limits. Potassium can also increase your bone density and help you save the muscle mass as you age.
Sulfur is already present in your body, but you can also find it in foods such as onions, eggs, etc. It is very important because it helps out with the synthesis of certain amino acids. This mineral can be taken as a supplement, but you can also increase its levels through food. Sulfur is capable of battling allergies and can help you breathe better by cleaning out the lower respiratory system. Additionally, it can be used as a pain relief for people who have osteoarthritis, particularly in their knees.
Boron might not get a lot of credit, but this mineral is quite important for your whole body. First of all, it helps you concentrate better and does wonders for your brain. Secondly, it can help with hormone disbalances in both women and men. As a matter of fact, some athletes and bodybuilders use it in order to increase the testosterone in their bodies. Finally, it helps other vitamins and minerals to be absorbed properly. This means that without boron, your organism might not get all the nutrients it needs.
What Illnesses Does Bone Broth Help With
There are many health benefits of bone broth, so Including it into your diet can help you with several diseases and conditions. Here are some of them.
This is an autoimmune disease which prompts your immune system to attack the thyroid. This can have a serious impact on your body. This illness can leave a person in a lot of pain, but bone broth can actually help with that. Bone broth is a natural source of collagen and gelatin which have an ability to restore the damaged joints and muscles.
Celiac disease and autoimmunity
Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition, and it often leads to more autoimmune diseases. People who have celiac disease are extremely sensitive to gluten. If they digest it, their bodies will automatically have an immune reaction to it, causing a variety of other symptoms. These can be diarrhea, gas, bloating, always feeling tired, anemia, painful rashes, etc. They can lose vitamins and minerals from their bodies, leading to severe deficiency. There are numerous bone broth benefits that can help people with celiac disease. It doesn’t contain gluten, and it is rich in nutrients, so it will help your body heal.
Leaky gut syndrome
To put it as simply as possible, leaky gut is a condition in which your intestine walls become too thin and damaged, letting the waste and bacteria get easily into your bloodstream. These particles are not supposed to be there, so your body reacts by attacking them. This can lead to various allergies, inflammation, etc. Considering the fact that bone broth contains vitamins and minerals which can rebuild your intestine walls, it can prevent leaky gut syndrome and keep your digestive system working properly.
Fertility, pregnancy, and breastfeeding
If you are trying to conceive, your body needs to be in excellent shape. You need good nutrients, and your hormones need to be in balance. Bone broth will deliver vitamins and minerals you require and help you out if you have any hormone disbalance. The same goes for pregnancy and breastfeeding. This is a time when you need more nutrients and keeping your gut healthy is a must. If you maintain your physical condition throughout the pregnancy and eat foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals, your little one will be healthy as well.
How Are People Using Bone Broth
Bone Broth can be considered a superfood and it is an important part of numerous modern diets. Its nutritional value makes bone broth irreplaceable in Paleo or Ketogenic meal plans. These specific diets do vary when it comes to the foods which are consumed by the people following them, but they all have one thing in common – making your body as healthy as possible and reaching your full potential through eating nutritious foods.
For instance, the Paleo diet encourages people to eat just like our hunter-gatherer ancestors. As you might recall from the introduction, those ancestors came up with bone broth in the first place, so including it in the diet is a must. The Paleo diet is big on whole foods and regular physical activity as well. The Primal diet or Ancestral diet is closely connected to the Paleo diet, but there are several differences. The goal is to eat raw food, or less processed food, just like primitive humans. This diet stresses out the importance of nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, meats, etc. And you should limit the intake of sugar.
This brings us to the Ketogenic diet, which gained a lot of popularity in the last decade. This meal plan is all about low-carb and high-fat foods. So once again, you should aim to eat less sugar (or carbohydrates). Once you reduce your sugar intake, your body goes into a ketogenic state and starts using fat for energy. Bone broth fits here perfectly due to its nutritional value. And if you want to experiment a bit with intermittent fasting, there is a Bone Broth fast. Just like any fast, it should last from 24 hours to three days. Some people like to do water or tea fasts, but with bone broth, you will still get vitamins and minerals into your system. So you can use bone broth for weight loss or to detox your body.
Bone broth is also a part of the Weston A. Price approach. This diet focuses on nutritious foods which are not processed. There are no limitations as long as you are eating fresh or organic produce. And there is the GAPS diet which is quite strict but still includes bone broth for its health benefits. The GAPS stands for Gut and Psychology Syndrome, and it was created because some doctors believe that conditions such as leaky gut can actually influence our brains. The GAPS diet supposedly treats conditions such as depression, ADHD, dyslexia, eating disorders, etc. Bone broth is a huge part of the start of the GAPS diet because it has vitamins and minerals which can heal the gut and reduce the existing inflammation.
How Do I Make Bone Broth?
At first, bone broth might not sound like a very delicious meal. But there are different recipes you can use which will make your bone broth tasty! Of course, if you want to make a proper bone broth, you will need time, so be ready for that. You need to simmer this meal for twenty-four hours in order to extract all the vitamins and minerals from the bones. So if you have a slow cooker, now might be the best time to use it. Here are some bone broth recipes you can try!
Chicken Bone Broth Recipe
For chicken bone broth you can use the following ingredients:
- 3 pounds of chicken bones
- 1 onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 3 carrots
- 2 celery stalks
- 1 tablespoon of black peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves
- natural sea salt (to taste)
Place twelve cups of water into your pot or slow cooker. Then add chicken bones. Let it boil for two hours and then remove the bones from the water. If there is any meat left on the bones, scrape it off. Then return the chicken bones to the water.
Now add the rest of the ingredients into the mix. If you are using a pot, let the broth boil for a bit and then lower the heat so it will continue simmering. Keep it on the stove for at least six hours. We slow simmer for 18 hours (our sweet spot). If you are using a slow cooker, reduce it to low and let it cook for about twelve hours.
Once it is done, remove the fat and foam from the top and strain the bones and vegetables. And your chicken bone broth is ready!
Beef Bone Broth Recipe
For beef bone broth you will need the following ingredients:
- 4 pounds of beef bones. Ask your butcher for marrow bones and bones that still have a little bit of meat on them
- 2 carrots, unpeeled
- 1 garlic
- 1 onion
- 2 celery stalks
- 2 tablespoons of black peppercorns
- natural sea salt (to taste)
Start this recipe off with preheating your oven to 450°F (or 230°C) and place the bones as well as the vegetables inside. You can roast everything for twenty minutes and then flip the bones and vegetables. If you do, wait for twenty more minutes and remove the roasting pan from the oven.
Then fill your pot with twelve cups of water and add pepper. Now add the bones and vegetables you have roasted in the oven. They should be completely covered with water, so add more if needed.
Place the pot on your stove and start cooking. Allow your broth to boil and then lower the temperature. It should simmer for the next nine to twenty-four hours. Keep the lid on the pot, but it should be ajar. Don’t leave your pot in the kitchen because you might need to take off the foam from the top every now and then. Once your bone broth is ready, remove it from the stove and let everything cool down a bit. Then strain it and remove the bones and vegetables from the broth. And that’s it! Your beef bone broth is ready!
Vegan Bone Broth Recipe
This one takes some improvising but yes, even vegans can have their own “bone broth”. Here are the ingredients you will need:
- half a cup of dried shiitake mushrooms
- half a cup of fresh mushrooms, including the stems
- 1 onion
- 5 garlic cloves
- 3 carrots
- a piece of ginger
- a bit of parsley
- collagen powder (optional)
Add twelve cups of water to your pot and put all the ingredients in (without the collagen powder if you are using it). Close it off with a lid and let everything boil. Then lower the temperature so your vegan bone broth will simmer for one or two hours.
Once it is done, remove the pot from the stove and set it aside for a bit. Let your broth cool down before you strain it. Now add the collagen powder, and that’s it! You can enjoy your vegan bone broth now!
Where to Buy Bone Broth
There are so many bone broth benefits, and everyone should be able to experience them. But the truth is some of us are too busy to spend a lot of time in the kitchen. Luckily, you can still get pre-made bone broth from various retailers. So if you are wondering where to buy bone broth, check your local stores, or healthy food establishments such as the Genius Bar! If you are still unable to find premade bone broth to purchase, browse around the internet and order it online.