There is a reason your mom always fed you chicken noodle soup when you were sick. No, it’s not the chicken or the (typically limited) amount of veggies, and it’s definitely not the noodles. It’s the chicken broth itself. The problem, however, is that the broth you find on grocery store shelves and in canned soups is not doing anyone any good. In fact, between preservatives and additives like MSG, it can actually be harmful for some people. And when we are trying to be our most vibrant selves that junk is best avoided. But it’s not just about what homemade bone broth does not contain. It’s about what it does contain.
First off, bone broth is high in collagen. Collagen is fantastic for your skin, hair, nails and joints. I’m sure you’ve seen all those fancy facial creams that contain collagen and make claims about how they’ll make you look 10 years younger and all that jazz, but the fact of the matter is that the collagen particles are too large to be absorbed by the skin. So don’t waste your money on facial creams and make bone broth (which is practically free) instead. I can personally attest to improvement in the texture and strength of my nails, hair and skin since I started incorporating bone broth into my diet on a semi regular basis. Additionally, Dr. Cate Shanahan, author of Deep Nutrition: Why Your Genes Need Traditional Foods, explains how collagen also helps to reduce the appearance of cellulite because it helps support cell structure. Second, bone broth aids digestion and helps repair the intestinal lining because of its gelatin content (source)- gelatin is a derivative of collagen. With the amount of damage done to the gut lining by modern day “foods,” everyone could use a little (or a lot) of the gut healing effects of bone broth, especially those suffering from autoimmune diseases (like me!). It also contains bio available nutrients (meaning they are easy for our bodies to assimilate) such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorous and more (source) which are essential for bone (and overall) health. Lastly, bone broth is high in the amino acids proline and glycine which have several critical functions in the body including, but not limited to building connective tissue, synthesizing DNA and RNA, production of glutathione (an important antioxidant), and aiding in digestion (source).
So basically, bone broth makes you super hot (I’m referring to good looks, not temperature) inside and out so you should make some like yesterday! And it’s SUPER easy. Just set it and forget it, as they say!
- 1-2 lbs of beef bones (or 1-2 whole chicken carcasses)
- 2 chicken feet (optional- increases the gelatin content)
- 1 Tbs apple cider vinegar
- 4-6 cloves of garlic, smashed
- Veggies (optional- carrots, celery, onion)
- Water to cover
- Place bones in crockpot
- Add apple cider vinegar and garlic
- Add water to cover the bones
- Cook on low for 24-48 hours
- Add optional veggies for the last 3 hours of cooking time
- Strain with a fine mesh strainer
- Store in refrigerator or freezer
We are aiming for super gelatinous broth here so if you pull your broth out of the fridge and it looks like beef jello, don’t be alarmed. In fact you should probably do a happy dance right there in your kitchen (at least that’s what I do). Drink the broth on its own warmed up in a mug or use it in soups, sauces, and stews in place of the store bought junk to increase the nutrient value of your food.
Let me know if you try this… or if you think I’m a super crazy hippie weirdo for drinking bone broth (it’s okay, I can take it)!
In vibrant health,