Bone broth may seem like a new trend, but people have been drinking this savory delight for a long, long time, perhaps even back when humans were still hunter-gatherers. Bone broth fans claim that it does everything ranging from clearing up your skin to facilitating weight loss, among many other things.
With bold claims usually arising from misinformation, why not join us as we uncover the truth behind the magic of this tasty food. We’ll separate the wheat from the chaff, so you don’t have to!
What’s the deal with bone broth?
Just like veggie or chicken broth, people prepare bone broth by simmering an ingredient – in this case, animal bones and other parts – in water along with a variety of herbs and spices to lend it flavor. There are different types of bone broth on the market including chicken, beef, pork, and fish, each with their own unique character and flavor profile.
To make bone broth animal bones and connective tissues together with a selection of herbs and spices is slowly simmered over low heat to extract the most amount of nutrition and flavor from the bones.
5 bone broth benefits
Bone broth is a big deal in the keto and paleo world, but it’s quickly gaining traction outside of the low-carb community. A growing amount of people are beginning to recognize the many benefits of bone broth – there’s a reason why your grandma fed you chicken noodle soup when you were sick. The chicken broth is the magic ingredient in this comfort food favorite, and it’s why chicken soup is excellent when you have a cold or the flu.
A quick internet search will lead you to a seemingly endless amount of claims about how bone broth changes lives. And indeed, drinking bone broth can bring about some pretty good health gains as part of an all-around healthy lifestyle. Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty and discuss the scientifically-backed benefits of bone broth.
Bone broth contains gelatin – you may know it as an ingredient in products like Jello and gummy bears – which can promote collagen production. Why should you care? Collagen is important in restoring the cartilage that naturally wears away as we age, supporting healthy, cushioned joints so we can move smoothly and with less friction.
In one study conducted at Penn State University, researchers gave a group of athletes – who were experiencing joint pain – collagen over 24 weeks to test its effectiveness against pain. The conclusion of the study indicated that collagen might support joint health and reduce joint pain. Although more conclusive studies are necessary to support this claim further, it’s a promising premise.
Helps heal gut ailments
Bone broth contains amino acids that can support the health of your gastrointestinal tract. One amino acid in particular -- glutamine -- may improve the gut lining and alleviate intestinal inflammation. The gelatin in bone broth also encourages the growth of probiotics within the gut.
People struggling with digestive issues may find that bone broth helps soothes the digestive tract as it's easily absorbed, making it a good option for those suffering from IBS and other gastrointestinal conditions.
Another excellent benefit of bone broth is that it's quite nutrient-dense. Rich in micronutrients like iron, fatty acids, zinc, manganese, selenium, and vitamins A and K, this soothing stock packs a nutritious punch.
However, the exact amount of nutrients varies dependent on the number of bones and cartilage used in the recipe. Your best bet is to buy your bone broth from a reputable brand known for their quality ingredients, or even better make your own at home!
Boosts the immune system
As if all the aforementioned benefits weren't enough, bone broth has also been linked to the treatment of leaky gut syndrome. What’s that, you ask? Simply put when you have a permeable intestinal lining as the result of medication overuse, poor diet, or existing medical conditions to name a few reasons, undigested food can seep into the bloodstream. When this happens, your immune system goes on high alert, releasing antibodies that trigger an autoimmune response and attack itself, as it perceived the rogue food element as a dangerous foreign body.
Bone broth can stimulate a healthier immune system response, as well as strengthen your intestinal walls.
Detoxes the body
And, because bone broth contains the amino acid glycine, it helps support cellular and liver detoxification. It also contains sulfur and glutathione, which both lower oxidative stress.
Glutathione also helps to eliminate heavy metals from the body such as mercury and lead, improving the absorption of antioxidants and nutrients. This amino acid also helps in DNA and protein synthesis, cell proliferation and metabolic processes.
Try it for yourself
Bone broth’s benefits make it quite the nutritional powerhouse, so it’s worth a try if you’re interested in adding even more healthful foods to your diet. As always, make sure to opt for quality and look out for any sneaky additives – double check the label and choose organic whenever you can.
Have fun experimenting and be sure to log the bone broth in the 8fit app to keep track of your daily food intake.