Top 4 Benefits of Bone Broth:
- Bone broth contains collagen and gelatin
- It is rich in minerals and electrolytes
- Bone broth has amazing gut healing properties
- It is a great immune and neuro boosting tonic
In China, the broth from breaking bones and vegetables is called “longevity soup”.
Collagen and Gelatin
Collagen is an animal protein that comes from the joints, connective tissues, marrow, etc. of animals. Collagen is best known for helping improve skin, hair, nails, strengthen joints, and healing the digestive system. This is because it is naturally the main component of one’s connective tissues. Taking a collagen supplement is advantageous for someone who may struggle with arthritis, inflammation of joints/tissues, wants to improve skin elasticity/appearance, improve hair/nails, or wants to support their digestive tract.
Gelatin is the product of collagen when it is broken down. It is the “jelly-like” substance that forms at the top when the bone broth cools. Supporting one’s own skeletal structure is important as aging occurs. Numerous studies have shown the positive effects of collagen and gelatin on gut health too! Individual supplements like chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine, that can be bought over the counter, are what is naturally in collagen and gelatin. Gelatin and collagen have been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for hundreds of years due to its tasty nature and its even more impressive list of health benefits. It is also a staple in Asian cuisine. It is used as the base and broth to many recipes. Read more about collagen here!
Minerals and Electrolytes
FACT: Minerals and electrolytes that come from a food source are MUCH better absorbed by the body! Bone broth is rich in calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, and sulphur. Bone broth also helps the body utilize protein better. The reason apple cider vinegar is added when bone broth is made is to PULL out the minerals from the bones, cartilage, ligaments, tendons, etc. Lemon juice or adding more acidic vegetables to the broth will work too. Carrots, celery, squash, and beets will help extract minerals and other nutrients because of their acidity. (Pitchford, 2009) Making bone broth in a crock pot, over several hours, on low-medium heat is ideal. In China, the broth from breaking bones and vegetables is called “longevity soup”. Most traditional cultures have utilized this practice and is widely known for its unique nutritional benefits as mentioned before.
The “gut” is a very delicate place. Changes in the gut and mucosal lining can have systemic effects. Maintaining homeostasis and a balance is necessary for optimal health. Stress, trauma, medications, etc. can change the permeability and the balance of the gut. These changes are the basis for many intestinal and extraintestinal diseases. These diseases include: infectious enterocolitis, inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, celiac disease, hepatic fibrosis, food intolerances and also allergies. (Lopetuso, Scaldaferri, Burno, Petito, Franceschi, & Gasbarrini, 2015)
I mentioned medications can change the balance of your gut. In fact, most medication’s side effects include: nausea, vomiting, diahhrea, and abdominal discomfort. In other words, these medications and drugs can alter your gut and microbiome. Medications taken by mouth travel to the digestive tract and stomach to be broken down and absorbed into the blood stream.
Bone broth, its gelatin, and the essential amino acids naturally found in bone broth help heal the gut by way of decreasing gut inflammation. The gelatin helps heal the intestinal tract and mucosal lining of the stomach by acting like a sealant. By sealing, healing, and restoring the function of the gut this stops toxins, pathogens, etc. from entering into the bloodstream. When these particles do enter the bloodstream it causes an immune response resulting in inflammation. If the function of the gut is constantly compromised this can lead to leaky gut syndrome and a whole host of other problems. BONE BROTH helps heal and repair the gut from emotional stress, food aversions, medications, etc.
Immune and Neuro Boosting Tonic
A healthy immune system starts with a healthy microbiome and gut! By reducing inflammation and supporting the gastrointestinal (GI) system with essential amino acids, this boosts immunity. This in turn also effects neurological health. This is the gut-brain axis (GBA). The GBA consists of communication between the central and enteric nervous system. The central nervous system consists of the brain and spinal cord. The enteric nervous system is essentially the gut’s brain or nervous system. The GBA links emotional and cognitive centers of the brain with peripheral intestinal functions. (Carabotti, Scirocco, Maselli, & Severi, 2015)
Functional GI disorders have been linked to central nervous system disorders such as autism, anxiety, and depression disorders. Bone broth has the ability to support the GI system, boost the immune system, and in turn help protect against neurological dysfunction. Drinking a cup o’ bone broth as an immune boosting tonic is a great natural remedy that has been around for hundreds of years. It is also a great way to utilize leftover scraps of vegetables and animal parts!
There are many ways to make bone broth, it is really quite simple! Not sure where to start? Check out our Basic Bone Broth Recipe HERE!!
Carabotti, M., Scirocco, A., Maselli, M. A., & Severi, C. (2015, April). The gut-brain axis: interactions between enteric microbiota, central and enteric nervous systems. Retrieved February 01, 2018, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4367209/
LOPETUSO, L. R., SCALDAFERRI, F., BRUNO, G., PETITO, V., FRANCESCHI, F., & GASBARRINI, A. (2015). The therapeutic management of gut barrier leaking: the emerging role for mucosal barrier protectors. Retrieved from http://www.europeanreview.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/1068-1076.pdf
Pitchford, P. (2009). Healing with whole foods: Asian traditions and modern nutrition (3rd ed.). Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic Books.