If you’ve ever eaten homemade stew or chicken soup, then you’ve also consumed bone broth. Whether it was high quality or not is another story. Either way, this soup was made from bones, joints, tendons, gelatin and fats from last night’s dinner.
Bone broth contains a number of nutrients that have significant benefits to each organ system in your body. Due to the influx of alternative medicine products on the market today, bone broth has become a fad for health nuts. Therefore, the benefits of bone broth are extensive.
But before we get into all of that…
So, What is Bone Broth?
Bone broth is simply the mixture left behind after boiling the bones from an animal, usually from chicken, beef, or ham bones. Once you have boiled your bones and carcass parts for several hours along with fats and gelatin you officially have your bone broth. If you want more of a soup or stew then you add vegetables and your favorite seasonings.
Quality Bone Broth
If you don’t want to make your bone broth, there are places to purchase it. It can be rather expensive due to its increased popularity, even though using parts of an animal to make soup stock isn’t a new thing. Many online health stores sell it as a powder, but usually contain additives and supplements.
The best bone broth comes when we make it ourselves with quality bones.
In an organic form, bone broth can be purchased from food companies usually connected to grass-fed farms in the mid-west. They will sell you the actual broth liquid in tubs. This is the best possible kind. Otherwise, roll up your sleeves and pick at the scraps and make it yourself!
Some of the brands include:
- Axe Bone Broth Protein or Collagen
- Bonafide Provisions Bone Broth
- PaleoPro Grass-Fed
- Swanson Organic Chicken Bone Broth
- Kettle and Fire Chicken Bone Broth
- Pacific Broth
- BRU Bone Broth
- Epic Bone Broth from Whole Foods
Bone Broth Benefits
Bone broth has plenty fo amazing benefits. Bone broth can do a lot of good for the human body. It can potentially help people who suffer from joint pain, may assist in detoxifying the liver, and even help your mood. Skin and gut issues from inflammation are also on the bone broth benefits list.
Just remember homemade chicken noodle soup is usually what the doctor orders for the flu or common cold. If you feel better, many things will improve mentally and physically. The immune system is your health!
Understanding all these benefits may make you want to pull out your crock pot more than during the winter months after you read!
12 Benefits of Bone Broth
- Nutrient Rich
- Rid of a Cold
- Anti-inflammatory for Gut
- Heart health
- Joint Protection
- Skin, Hair, Nail health
- Bone and Teeth health
- Mental and Mood Improvement
- Potential Liver Detox
- Weight Loss and Cellulite reduction
- Sleep Aid
Nutrient Rich Bone Broth
Alone, bones are rich in vitamins and nutrients. These include: calcium, magnesium, phosphorus. When you make bone broth, the vitamins, minerals, and amino acids are extracted by the high temperatures and mix with your water and vinegar. The pieces of gelatin, tissues and bone you use are also high in collagen which can assist with a variety of joint, bone, and inflammatory issues in the body. Collagen is the building block for proteins in the body.
Depending on how many and which kind of bones you use, it is unclear as to how many vitamins and other nutrients you will get. This is very hard to measure if you are doing a home brew. Contents are measured and quality can be more determined if you purchase this from a health food store in powder form.
Health nuts love the broth because it is a low calorie but high protein food. According to some studies it is not a significant source of these vitamins, however if you’re consuming a lot, it can be beneficial.
Bone Broth is Rich in:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin K
- Additional nutrients can be added by different veggies (source)
Bone Broth Improves Hydration
It’s like natures IV bag that you can prep at home with leftovers or buy. Bone broth can supply electrolytes and if you suffer from gastrointestinal problems it helps you hydrate. This is the best way to feel better and replenish your body with nutrients and is a great source of fluid as an alternative drink without sugars.
Bone Broth Can Help Rid of a Cold
There has never been evidence that bone broth can cure your cold, but it certainly can help! Chicken stock can warm you up and make you feel better. When you add other nutrient rich vegetables you are getting even more immune system boosting elements to fight a cold or flu.
Some studies over the years have looked at the value of chicken soup. It can help clear nasal passages and help reduce inflammation.
Bone Broth Fights Inflammation and Leaky Gut
When you heal your gut, you are healing inflammation. This is the root cause of all disease. Your overall health is damaged when you have gastrointestinal problems. Consuming bone broth can improve your gut and overall immune system by decreasing the inflammation.
Studies have shown that the amino acids in the bone broth can diminish inflammatory conditions. These include: cysteine, histidine, glycine and L-glutamine. Anyone who has any kind of gut condition such as colitis, chrons, leaky gut, heartburn, gastritis and other GI conditions can benefit from bone broth.
When the mucosal lining is damaged issues like gastritis (which is usually temporary but could be chronic) or other GI diseases that are chronic such as chrons can cause someone to not get enough nutrients. The mild bone broth can be easy to digest and get some nutrients into your body faster than breaking down a harsh meal.
Drink Bone Broth for the Heart
Your heart is a vital organ and you should protect it. Bone broth can aid in your heart muscle health by using a small chain of amino acids, known as peptides. The peptides have a variety of things that are from proteins that can improve muscle function of this vital organ.
In a ham bone study led by Leticia Mora-Soler Ph.D. in Spain it was found that people could benefit from the different peptides in the bone that could improve digestion, high blood pressure, blood clots and overall have a significant impact on the cardiovascular system. (source)
Her team, using dry-cured ham bones could improve heart health because of the amino acids or peptides. The ham bones contained four different types of peptides include: ACE-I, ECE inhibitors which are used in a drug form to lower high blood pressure and PAF-AH inhibitors, and DPP-IV inhibitory peptides.(source)
This is incredible news for people on these kinds of drugs. Maybe the southern tradition of white beans and ham bone stock is better for us than doctors think—they are always telling overweight people with blood pressure issues to lay off the pork!
Bone Broth Improves Joint Function
The collagen in your bone broth mixture can help with joint function. The levels you get are another story. It doesn’t look like there is a significant amount so taking supplements still would be a benefit to you. Unless you are drinking a ton of grass fed bone broth every week this might not be the best source. Research has found that taking collagen supplements can greatly improve joint function and adding bone broth to your diet can certainly help.
There is debate from Harvard and other institutions whether bone broth can truly fight osteoarthritis.
Skin, Hair and Nails Improve with Bone Broth
Skin can be improved because bone broth has collagen in it. With more vitamin C more collagen can be made in the body. The collagen can also help with your hair and nail growth. Improving immune system function can help all of these things. It is said that it’s not a significant source however. Adding a ton of vegetables especially carrots can help with skin and eye health; vitamin A.
Bone Broth Strengthens Bones and Teeth
By consuming bone based foods you can get nutrients to help your bones. Bones typically contain calcium, amino acids, phosphorus and an array of other helpful nutrients. If you suffer from bone health problems or teeth issues drinking it can be beneficial for both.
The broth along with vegetables contains a variety of nutrients like vitamin D, zinc, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, vitamin A, C, K, B vitamins, copper, iron, boron, among other minerals and amino acids. Vitamin D alone is hard to get for most people, as our society doesn’t go outside and get enough sunshine. Vitamin D is crucial for bone and teeth health.
Mood Can Lift With Bone Broth
If you feel down or are stressed then maybe bone broth is your answer. By consuming the broth you can improve gut bacteria. Your gut is the key to your immune health as well as your brain health. It can potentially improve your mood after consumption several times.
Gelatin which is in fattier parts of the meat you use for the stock. This can be a component of your bone broth which adds amino acids like alanine, glycine, proline and hydroxyproline. These are associated with improving inflammation in your gut, which helps your brain health.
When your gut is healthy it sends positive signals to your brain. Everyone can benefit from limiting stress – grab a cup of bone broth and make sure gelatin is in it.
Bone Broth Could Assist in Liver Detox
Glycine improved liver detox in rats. There are currently no human studies to prove this works. Bone broth could potentially be beneficial humans for hepatic detox. It’s hard to say on what level it could improve liver function for humans. Here’s a study, but it involves rats, not humans.
Bone Broth Can Help Fight Cellulite and Weight Loss
Drinking broth to lose weight – this isn’t a joke. It’s filled with nutrient components that help your body. So, if your body’s functions are improved the bone broth can help you lose weight. But, this doesn’t mean being a couch potato and drinking bone broth alone will help you rid of the pounds.
The Journal of Renal Nutrition in 2017 showed an average cup of chicken broth contains more protein than basic chicken broth. This means you can add more protein in your diet without consuming a bunch of calories. The fewer calories consumed, the easier it is to lose weight.
You will still need to have a steady exercise routine in your life. Bone broth can become an aid to helping you be hydrated; less inflamed, and gives you an extra immune system boost with healthier digestion and can help reduce cellulite. Collagen is very important for fat reduction in the body.
Proper digestion is crucial to weight loss. The broth can make you feel fuller for a longer period of time and help you reduce calories by drinking a lot of it.
Drink Bone Broth for Better Sleep
Good sleep is important for every system in your body. Your immune system needs sleep to be healthy. Do you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep? By consuming quality bone broth each day and maybe a few times a week you may get a decent night’s rest.
It is best to not start this later in the day and especially people with bladder or bowel conditions. You can drink it before bed however, drinking it during the morning and afternoon is best. You want to build this in you system. Drinking it before bed could make conditions such as interstitial cystitis or overactive bladder become problematic.
The bone broth contains the amino acid and neurotransmitter glycine which is responsible for promoting better sleep and makes you feel better the next day.
Homemade Bone Broth Recipe
Get out your crock pot and add in those chicken bones from last night (assuming you like to cook with all parts, you might have these on hand), break them up (wings, bones), gelatin, fat pieces, water, vinegar and boil everything. You can do this for a few hours, and then put it on simmer for several additional hours.
Try the following Recipe:
- 1 large crock pot (plug in or stove top pot with lid)
- 1 gallon of water
- 1 ounce of vinegar
- 3–5 pounds of bones and tissues
Once you have finished the broth, strain the contents with a tiny holed strainer or use some cheesecloth. Now, you are ready to place it in containers to be stored.
Meat water, Grandma’s homemade stock, or Mom’s chicken soup – whatever you call it, bone broth can be a beneficial supplement for your body. This staple doesn’t need to be marketed to understand the benefits, all you have to do is understand what real proteins and fats can do for the human body.
The majority of the integrative and alternative medicine health practitioners and doctors and media are pro-consumption of bone broth. Western medicine however doesn’t have significant evidence to prove its greatness but they can agree that the collagen and amino acids in high amounts are beneficial for the brain, joints, gut and immune system function are all beneficial.
For now, bone broth is a highly nutritious drink supplement that can support the body and many of its functions.
Author: Meredith Iager
Meredith has 13 years of writing experience online and in newspapers and studied journalism at Hood College in Frederick, Maryland. Over the years, she has contributed entertainment articles and reviews to various sites including FrederickNewsPost.com and Fanbolt.com.
Since 2010, she has focused on AMA and integrative health and wellness content for AngiesList.com, SteadyContent.com, and a variety of private clients. She is an avid supporter of being prepared when SHTF and growing your own food, and is pro federal legalization of marijuana.
In addition to writing, she does transcription, researches on health constantly, and is an avid oil and acrylic painter. You can check out her paintings and older articles here: Meredith_A_Iager on HubPages | Follow Meredith on Instagram
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