Bone broth has become very popular recently, especially among health-conscious individuals. This is because it’s believed to have many health benefits.
Although there is no published research on bone broth itself, there’s plenty of evidence that suggests drinking it may be very beneficial.
Restorative, nourishing, and filled with age-defying collagen, Homemade Bone Broth seems to be everywhere these days. Easy and versatile, Learn How to Make Bone Broth with my easy-to-follow instructions, tips, and answers to all your bone broth frequently asked questions.
Yes, of course, bone broth is not a magical healing drink that will solve all your problems.
Though supporters claim it’s good for your gut, and can reduce joint pain. Making you sleep better, and even help make you live longer. However, experts warn that there’s not enough research to support those claims—yet.
What Is Bone Broth?
By definition, bone broth is made by simmering the bones and connective tissue of animals. It’s a highly nutritious stock that is commonly used in soups, sauces, and gravies. Recently, it has gained popularity as a health drink.
Bone broth dates back to prehistoric times when hunter-gatherers turned otherwise inedible animal parts like bones, hooves, and knuckles into a broth they could drink. In that case, you can make bone broth using bones from just about any animal.
What are the Benefits of Bone Broth?
Firstly, bone broth can be sipped straight as a health tonic. That’s why we like stirring in nutritional yeast, sea salt, and black pepper to taste. Plus a little miso and some green onions and minced garlic. It’s comforting, warming, and nourishing.
In fact, bone broth is high in vitamins, minerals, and amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. It also contains a high amount of collagen, which may help support bone and joint health.
To simply put, because the broth is easy to digest, these nutrients are easy for the body to absorb. Making them more available to the body — especially for those with digestive issues.
Below are more related benefits;
Helps the Digestive System
Scientists have discovered that your overall health depends heavily on the health of your intestinal tract.
Not only is bone broth easy to digest, but it may also aid in the digestion of other foods. The gelatin found in bone broth naturally attracts and holds liquids. This is why properly prepared broth congeals in the fridge.
Gelatin can also bind to water in your digestive tract, which helps foods move through your gut more easily.
It has also been shown to protect and heal the mucosal lining of the digestive tract in rats. It is thought to have the same effect in humans, but more research needs to be done to show its effectiveness.
An amino acid in gelatin called glutamine helps maintain the function of the intestinal wall and has been known to prevent and heal a condition known as “leaky gut.” Leaky gut, which is associated with several chronic diseases, is when the barrier between your gut and the bloodstream is impaired.
Substances that your body doesn’t normally allow through the leak into your bloodstream, which leads to inflammation and other problems.
For all of these reasons, drinking bone broth may be beneficial for individuals with leaky gut, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or irritable bowel diseases (IBD), such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease.
Helps Fight Inflammation
By the same token, the amino acids found in bone broth, including glycine and arginine, have strong anti-inflammatory effects.
Arginine, in particular, may help fight the inflammation associated with obesity. One study shows higher levels of arginine in the blood are associated with decreased inflammation in obese women.
Another study in rats suggests that supplementing with arginine could help fight inflammation in obese individuals, but more research needs to be done in humans to support these results.
While some inflammation is necessary, chronic inflammation may lead to a number of serious diseases. These include heart disease, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, Alzheimer’s disease, arthritis and many types of cancer.
Because of this, it’s important to eat plenty of anti-inflammatory foods.
It’s Weight Loss Friendly
Bone broth is typically very low in calories, but can still satisfy hunger.
Studies have found that eating broth-based soup on a regular basis can increase fullness, reduce calorie intake and lead to weight loss over time. What’s more, bone broth contains gelatin, which has specifically been shown to promote feelings of fullness.
One study found that gelatin was more effective at reducing hunger than the protein casein, which is found in dairy products.
Another study in 53 men found that, when combined with resistance training, collagen helped increase muscle mass and decrease body fat.
Important Vitamins and Minerals
In general, bone broth is very nutritious. However, the nutrient content does depend on the ingredients you use, as each brings something different to the table.
Animal bones are rich in calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus and other trace minerals — the same minerals needed to build and strengthen your own bones.
Fishbones also contains iodine, which is essential for healthy thyroid function and metabolism. Connective tissue gives you glucosamine and chondroitin, natural compounds found in cartilage that are known to support joint health.
Marrow provides vitamin A, vitamin K2, minerals like zinc, iron, boron, manganese, and selenium, as well as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. All of these animal parts also contain the protein collagen, which turns into gelatin when cooked and yields several important amino acids.
As the ingredients simmer, their nutrients are released into the water in a form your body can easily absorb. Many people don’t get enough of these nutrients in their diet, so drinking bone broth is a good way to get more.
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to know the exact amount of each nutrient contained in the broth because every batch of bones is so different.
Improves Joint Health
As an example, Collagen is the main protein found in bones, tendons, and ligaments.
During the cooking process, collagen from bones and connective tissue is broken down into another protein called gelatin.
Gelatin contains important amino acids that support joint health. It contains proline and glycine, which your body uses to build its own connective tissue. This includes tendons, which connect muscles to bones, and ligaments, which connect bones to each other.
Bone broth also contains glucosamine and chondroitin, which are natural compounds found in cartilage.
Multiple studies have found that glucosamine and chondroitin can decrease joint pain and lessen the symptoms of osteoarthritis. The proteins in bone broth have also proven beneficial for those with rheumatoid arthritis, which is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes painful damage to the tendons and ligaments.
In one study, 60 people with rheumatoid arthritis consumed chicken collagen for three months. Symptoms improved significantly in all 60 participants, with four showing complete remission of the disease.
Improves Sleep and Brain Function
The amino acid glycine, found in bone broth, may help you relax. Multiple studies have found that glycine helps promote sleep.
One study found that taking 3 grams of glycine before bed significantly improved the quality of sleep in individuals who have difficulty sleeping.
Taking glycine before bed helped participants fall asleep faster, maintain a deeper sleep and wake up fewer times throughout the night. This study also found that glycine reduced daytime sleepiness and improved mental function and memory.
Therefore, drinking bone broth could have similar benefits.
Where do I Get Bones?
Instead of throwing leftover bones and carcasses from meals in the garbage, save them to make broth.
You can collect the bones in a bag and store them in your freezer until you are ready to cook them. However, if you are not someone who typically buys and eats whole chickens and bone-in meat, you may wonder where you can find animal bones to make broth.
You can ask for them at your local butcher or farmers market. The meat department at most grocery stores will often have them too. The best part is they are very inexpensive to purchase. Your butcher may even give them to you for free.
Do your best to find pastured chicken or grass-fed beef bones, since these animals will be the healthiest and provide maximum health benefits to you.
How do I Make Bone Broth?
Generally speaking, making bone broth is actually quite easy.
Not forgetting, there are many recipes online, but most people don’t even use a recipe. For one thing, all you really need is a large pot, water, vinegar, and bones.
And to get you started here is an easy recipe you can follow:
- 1 gallon (4 liters) of water
- 2 tbsp (30 ml) apple cider vinegar
- 2–4 pounds (about 1–2 kg) of animal bones
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Place all ingredients in a large pot or slow cooker.
- Bring to a boil.
- Reduce to a simmer and cook for 12–24 hours. The longer it cooks, the better it will taste and more nutritious it will be.
- Allow the broth to cool. Strain it into a large container and discard the solids.
But, in order to make the most nutritious broth, it is best to use a variety of bones. Especially, the marrow bones, oxtail, knuckles, and feet.
Also, you can even mix and match bones in the same batch. Adding vinegar is important because it helps pull all of the valuable nutrients out of the bones and into the water. After all, which is ultimately what you will be consuming.
You can also add vegetables, herbs or spices to your broth to enhance the flavor. Common additions include garlic, onion, celery, carrots, parsley, and thyme. These can be added right away in step one. As you can see, bone broth is incredibly easy to make.
How do I Store Bone Broth?
Once your bone broth has simmered for 10-12 hours and reduced, strain and store as desired.
But, it can also be stored in glass jars and frozen up to 1-2 months or more. Just be sure to leave a couple of inches at the top of the jar to allow for expansion in the freezer.
Note: Bone broth typically gelatinizes when refrigerated because of the collagen content. But don’t worry — that’s normal. When reheated it liquifies once again just like store-bought chicken broth.
While it’s easiest to make broth in large batches, it can only be stored safely in the refrigerator for up to five days.
To help your broth last longer, you can freeze it in small containers and heat up individual servings as needed. Unfortunately, there is no straightforward answer to how often you should take them.
Many people recommend drinking 1 cup (237 ml) of bone broth daily for maximum health benefits. Some are better than none, so whether it be once a week or once a day, drink it as often as you can.
You can drink the bone broth by itself, but not everyone likes the texture and mouthfeel. Luckily, there are other ways to enjoy it. It can be used as the base for soups, or to make sauces and gravies.
Finally, I hope the above-revised guide on Bone Broth benefits was useful to you.
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