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Bone Broth Benefits – Fact Or Fiction

bone-brothFor the last year or so people have been swearing by an age-old  yet new-again nutritional drink – bone broth. This “beverage” has been touted as the latest in healthy living. You may be asking yourself if people are running to the market and snatching cartons of broth off the shelf and drinking them. No. Well, hopefully, no. While drinking bone broth is being adopted by the masses it has been around for hundreds of years as both a healing potion and culinary delight. It’s also a staple of the paleo diet.

Bone Broth v Stock v Broth

First question, how does bone broth differ from stock and “regular” broth? It’s all in the preparation. Stock combines vegetables, aromatics, and bones with a little meat simmered in water over a few hours. The idea is that the gelatin from the bones will thicken the mixture giving it a full mouth feel. When cool it can be used similarly to cream or butter.

Broth is prepared similarly to stock but over a much shorter period of time, roughly 45 minutes to two hours. It also includes more meat than bones. It may not be prepared using bones at all. This is typically used as the base for soup given its lighter texture.

Bone broth is as the name implies, a broth made from bones much like stock but also ends with a lighter texture like broth. The cooking time is at least 24 hours allowing for more of the bones’ minerals and the marrow to seep into the water. It’s watery like broth making it drinkable while hot, yet congeals likes stock when cold.

Benefits Of Bone Broth

There is much debate whether bone broth has any real benefits. Of course, scientists rush to debunk its usefulness. There are many who swear by its healing powers. Here are some of the benefits believed to come from consuming bone broth on a regular basis:

  • Heals the gut – gelatin found in the broth may help with sealing the holes of a leaky gut and provide protection for non-leaky guts.
  • Immune health – due to the high content of minerals in the broth the immune system gets a boost, same rationale for eating chicken soup when sick
  • Joint health – the glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate content may help prevent osteoarthritis while keeping joints lubricated and relatively pain-free
  • Sound sleep – glycine is believed to help people sleep better while also improving memory
  • Look younger – bone broth is full of collagen, a known factor in fighting aging (there is debate on whether consuming collagen has the same effect as applying it)

Try Bone Broth For Yourself

I have tried bone broth myself and love it. I’ve refined my recipe and technique over time. While I can’t rule out the placebo effect entirely, I can say I have noticed many benefits to making my own bone broth. I used to wake up with joint pain in my ankles and knees. No more. Before drinking bone broth regularly I couldn’t eat  bananas. I don’t produce enough of the enzymes to break them down so I would get violently ill as my body would try to rid itself of the offending food. This started in high school. Suddenly I can eat them. After doing some research, the theory is that bone broth can also trigger the production of digestive enzymes. I also find that I have significantly fewer issues with allergies. However, I’m still not able to eat raw onions and garlic.

I enjoy it straight no chaser in a mug right out of the pot. Sometimes I will throw in some gluten-free noodles or add it to a pot of chilli or soup. I also give it to my dog in her food.

In the words of Donald Trump, you have nothing to lose by trying this for yourself. Enjoy and let us know what you think below. If you enjoyed this post share it within your communities.

The New Black Chick Bone Broth Recipe

I highly recommend using a slow cooker given how long it needs to cook. Using a stock pot will work, but I highly advise against leaving the stove unattended. The ingredients should be organic whenever possible. If you can, get bones from high quality, grass-fed, humanely raised animals. Whole Foods or local butcher shops are a great source. You can also order them online.

Ingredients and their medicinal properties

  • 2-3 pounds of chicken or beef bones or any you prefer
  • 1 yellow onion – natural antibiotic (do not feed to dogs)
  • 3 large carrots – powerful antioxidant, vitamins A, C, K, B8 and minerals iron, copper, potassium, calcium
  • 3 celery stalks – rich in vitamins A, C, K and potassium
  • 2-3 bay leaves – great for taste and for skin and hair health
  • 1 bunch cilantro – believed to help remove heavy metals from the blood
  • 1 bunch parsley – natural antibiotic, heals the nervous system and helps flush out excess fluids
  • Kosher salt or sea salt to taste
  • 1tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Spring water or bottled water – water bottled at the source (spring water) such as Fiji brand, contains minerals and electrolytes; avoid tap water due to the chlorine and heavy metal content

Preparation

Roast the bones at 350º for about 10 to 15 minutes. Roasting the bones help reduce the smell. You don’t want the marrow to be over-cooked. Once ready put the bones into the slow cooker and cover with water. Be sure to only use enough water to just cover the top of the bones. Add in Apple Cider Vinegar which will help to pull the minerals from the bones during the cooking process. Roughly chop the onions, carrots, and celery and add in. You will discard these after the broth is done, no need to make it look pretty. Important – if you will be giving this to your dog, do NOT include onions! Add the salt and bay leaves. Set the slow cooker to low.

Cook for about 20 hours then add cilantro and parsley. The broth should cook for at least 24 hours. Between 36 and 48 hours is best.

Enjoy

2015-11-04 12.41.50You can strain the bones and vegetables from the broth and store in a glass mason jar in the refrigerator. Then heat up when you like. You can also set the slow cooker to warm and leave it on the counter and drink from it throughout the day. Use a strainer when pouring into a mug to keep the vegetables from getting in the cup. Keep in mind that if you keep it in the slow cooker all day it should stay at a food safe temperature and also be mindful that the broth can evaporate. Enjoy your broth quickly to avoid this. You can also use it to make soup or stew.

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Nile Harris
Nile Harris, the Chief Chick, is a word weaver and dream believer with 2o years of experience in healthcare and finance. This aspiring motivational speaker, TED presenter and LinkedIn Influencer is committed to valuing people, driving healthcare access and innovation, and weaving words that move people to action. Her views are her own.
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