The Healing Benefits of Bone Broth

  • The gelatin found in bone broth is a hydrophilic colloid that attracts and holds liquids, including digestive juices, thereby supporting proper digestion.
  • Bone broth reduces joint pain and inflammation courtesy of chondroitin sulfates, glucosamine, and other compounds extracted from the boiled down cartilage.
  • Amino acids such as glycine, proline, and arginine in bone broth all have anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Bone broth contains high amounts of calcium, magnesium, and other nutrients that play an important role in healthy bone formation.
  • Bone broth can be made from any type of bones you like – chicken, pork, or even fish – but seek bones from organically raised, pastured, or grass-fed animals.

The Healing Benefits of Bone Broth for Your Gut

Bone broth is a staple of the GAPS Diet, which is based on the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) principles developed by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride.

The GAPS diet is often used to treat children with autism and other disorders rooted in gut dysfunction, but just about anyone with allergies or less than optimal gut health can benefit from it, as it is designed to heal leaky gutIf your gut is leaky or permeable, partially undigested food, toxins, viruses, yeast, and bacteria have the opportunity to pass through your intestine and access your bloodstream; this is known as leaky gut.

When your intestinal lining is repeatedly damaged due to reoccurring leaky gut, damaged cells called microvilli become unable to do their job properly. They become unable to process and utilize the nutrients and enzymes that are vital to proper digestion.

Eventually, digestion is impaired and absorption of nutrients is negatively affected. As more exposure occurs, your body initiates an attack on these foreign invaders. It responds with inflammation, allergic reactions, and other symptoms we relate to a variety of diseases.

Leaky gut is the root of many allergies and autoimmune disorders, for example. When combined with toxic overload, you have a perfect storm that can lead to neurological disorders like autism, ADHD, and learning disabilities.

One of the main foods that you use is bone broth, because not only is it very easily digested, it also contains profound immune-optimizing components that are foundational building blocks for the treatment of autoimmune diseases.

As your leaky gut begins to heal and your health improves, certain foods are added back in, but bone broth remains a staple because it is so incredibly nourishing for your body. This is why, even if you don't have gut issues, it is still a wonderful staple food to include in your diet.

The recipe that follows is from The Heal Your Gut Cookbook: Nutrient-Dense Recipes for Intestinal Health Using the GAPS Diet. Written by Hilary Boynton and Mary Brackett, it shares helpful tips on how to "heal and seal" your gut so that profound healing can take place.

This bone broth recipe is a classic and one you'll want to keep for future reference. Below I've also included tips on how to make this recipe using a slow cooker or different types of bones, such as chicken. Perhaps the most important caveat when making broth, is to make sure the bones are from organically raised, pastured or grass-fed animals.

As noted by Sally Fallon, chickens raised in concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) tend to produce stock that doesn't gel, and this gelatin has long been valued for its therapeutic properties.

The recipe that follows calls for beef bones, but you can also make bone broth using whole organic chicken, whole fish (including the head) or fish bones, or pork. Each will render a different flavor. Boynton and Brackett actually suggest starting with chicken because it has the mildest flavor (beef tends to be more overpowering). If you're using chicken, simply place the entire chicken, raw, into the pot in place of the beef bones and proceed with the recipe as follows.

A Basic Bone Broth Recipe

One note, if cooking a whole chicken, the meat should start separating from the bone after about 2 hours. Simply remove the chicken from the pot and separate the meat from the bones. Then place the bones back in and continue to simmer. You can even use bones from a roasted chicken or turkey carcass to make bone broth, which is incredibly cost effective since you would otherwise throw them away.

Calories: 379 per serving | Number of Serving: 3 Quarts

Ingredients
:

  • 3-4 pounds beef marrow and knuckle bones
  • 2 pounds meaty bones such as short ribs
  • ½ cup raw apple cider vinegar
  • 4 quarts filtered water
  • 3 celery stalks, halved
  • 3 carrots, halved
  • 3 onions, quartered
  • Handful of fresh parsley
  •  Sea salt

Method

  1. Place bones in a pot or a crockpot, add apple cider vinegar and water, and let the mixture sit for 1 hour so the vinegar can leach the mineral out of the bones.
  2. Add more water if needed to cover the bones.
  3. Add the vegetables bring to a boil and skim the scum from the top and discard.
  4. Reduce to a low simmer, cover, and cook for 24-72 hours (if you're not comfortable leaving the pot to simmer overnight, turn off the heat and let it sit overnight, then turn it back on and let simmer all day the next day)
  5. During the last 10 minutes of cooking, throw in a handful of fresh parsley for added flavor and minerals.
  6. Let the broth cool and strain it, making sure all marrow is knocked out of the marrow bones and into the broth.
  7. Add sea salt to taste and drink the broth as is or store in fridge up to 5 to 7 days or freezer up to 6 months for use in soups or stews.

Natural health expert Dr. Joseph Mercola

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Sources and References:

1 Chest. 2000 Oct;118(4):1150-7

2 JPEN J Parenter Enteral Nutr. 2005 Jan-Feb;29(1 Suppl):S70-4

3 Weston A. Price January 1, 2000