The benefits of collagen-rich bone broth

It truly is amazing how the simplest answer is often the best.

Chicken broth has been prescribed for generations for illness and it turns out, real broth can repair and calm the mucous lining of the small intestine – which aids digestion, soothes the nervous system, feeds your skin and boosts immunity. Wow! What a powerful little drink!

The father of modern medicine, Hippocrates famously said all disease begins in the gut. While he was not entirely accurate in saying that all disease begins in the gut, many diseases do. Therefore healing your gut is essential if you want to live long – and well. 

A modern diet and pollution causes inflammation and inflammation is the cause of so much illness, stress and age-related degeneration. 

Chicken bone broth recipe

Broth is packed with minerals such as calcium and magnesium and collagen which is essential for skin, hair and nails. It supports connective tissue which is great for joint health, mobility and preventing and improving cellulite. 

Now, not all broth is made equal and please don’t be fooled into thinking that cheap packet soup is in any way comparable – it’s not. 

Good quality bone broth made the old-fashioned way is ideal – however there are high-quality pre-made options that are just as good – See here. 

By cooking the bones slowly, all the goodness from those bones ends up in the broth, making it a nutritious powerhouse.

Reducing inflammation can have incredible affects on your skin and gut health. Bone broth has been given credit for improving sleep quality, wellbeing, mood, happiness, skin, hair, hormones, adrenals and even for shifting stubborn body fat.

What types of bones should I use?
Choosing your bones is the only part about making broth that you should be particular about. Bones with cartilage, chicken feet, connective bones etc will create the most gelatinous broth – broth that is jelly-like in consistency once cold. 

Most people recommend starting with a chicken broth, it’s delicious and more palatable than beef, especially for kids. Beef broth is incredible, particularly if you use the connective joints and there are suggestions that beef bone broth is more gelatinous if you use the right parts of the animal.

I buy my chicken frames from Wray Organic, I call up ahead of time and ask them to put a month’s worth of frames aside for me. Organic butchers, even online butchers, are usually super happy to help you out with this also. Tell them you’re planning on making bone broth and need the most nutrient-rich bones available.

Remember that adding in some of the chicken or beef meat will add an extra depth of flavour too. 

How do I cook the broth?
– Simmer on the stove top for a hearty old fashioned broth using a crock pot. 
– Slow cookers are fantastic for a set-up and go option. 
– Pressure cookers are faster, but just as effective at leeching the goodness from       the bones. 

Which ingredients do I need other than bones?
Don’t think too much about this one, add in whatever vegetables, vegtetable scraps or herbs you have on hand. If you want to be extra budget-friendly then using your leftover vegetable scraps will be the most cost effective. Many people choose to keep a bag or container in the freezer and add in organic scraps as they make them during the week, ready to pop into the slow-cooker. Adding in celery, carrots, onion and garlic usually results in a pretty tasty broth. 

A common addition is a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar – the acidity helps to release the nutrients from the bones. However, many chefs and bone broth advocates don’t believe these are necessary – so feel free to add it in or not, you shouldn’t taste it either way.

How much bone broth should I drink?
Many practitioners recommend about 2 cups (or 16 ounces) per day as a great way to get those nutrients into your body and soothe your digestive system. You can mix this up, drink it as a snack, finely slice some vegetables into hot broth and enjoy it as a crunchy soup, add it to cooked meals, use it as a soup-base with roast pumpkin and sweet potato, as a base for stew or add some rice noodles, fresh herbs and a pinch of salt… the options are endless. 

Can I fast or do intermittent fasting with bone broth?
Fasting with bone broth. Mini fasting days with bone broth are ideal, broth fills you up and adding some finely sliced veggies adds texture and interest – helping you forget that you are mini-fasting. Using bone broth as a mini-fasting option is a gentle way to fast, as you are nourishing your body in a way that also allows it to heal and regenerate at the same time.

Is bone broth the same as collagen supplements?
Collagen supplements are great (provided they are high quality), however bone broth provides a different set of protein, amino acids, good quality fats and the two should be used in addition to each other. Bone broth essentially is a food – collagen supplements should be treated as a supplement with a specific dosage each day.

Dr Kellyann Petrucci, author of Bone Broth Diet suggests that bone broth can even be effective at healing the adrenals in such a way that helps to balance hormones and in some cases replace the need for HRT in menopausal women. Dr Kellyanne also touts the benefits of bone broth for burning stored body fat, a common complaint as we age. 

Check out our recipe here, or see our high-quality pre-made versions for sale here. 

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