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Foods That Heal – Bone Broth – Home Made Superfood

Foods That Heal - Bone Broth - Home Made Superfood

Greetings friends. With the cold weather descending upon us here in Australia already, warming comforting foods are starting to become the focus of most people’s meals. This makes now a good time to start creating your own broths. Broths are a particularly good healing food and a very simple one to make at home yourself and store away for later use. Broths can be used in many and varied dishes from stews to curry’s and more. Traditionally broths have been used for many years. Nothing went to waste if an animal was killed or old vegetables needed throwing out. Bone broths in particular, have the potential to be part of the healing process in leaky gut and irritable bowel syndrome. It is not the only factor but a great contributor and they are also wonderful for when you are sick with a cold or a flu due to their high nutritional content. Let me explain what broth is and why it’s so good for you. When you cook meat, bones, bone marrow and connective tissues in filtered water for a few hours you get broth. The flavour, nutrients and minerals from the bones migrate into the water making a wonderfully warming, nourishing and healing broth drink. Broth is packed full of minerals including a rich source of calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, magnesium and sulfur. Bone broth also helps maintain and rebuild the structure of our bodies. Another nutritional benefit to drinking broth is the gelatin which is leached from the animal bones during the cooking process. Gelatin is incredibly healing for the digestive tract as broth works towards normalizing digestion and makes foods cooked in broth easier to digest. Other benefits of drinking gelatinous rich broth include strengthening hair and nails, reducing, preventing and healing cellulite and wrinkles.

How Can Broths Heal ?

anatomy-160524_640Be it a stronger gut or healthier nails and skin, broths are a wonderful food for healing. Traditional foods such as cultured dairy, cultured vegetables, bone broth and stocks have been consumed for thousands of years because they contain such wide ranging health benefits. Bone broth or stock was a way our ancestors honoured the whole animal. They used the parts they couldn’t eat directly such as the bones, ligaments, bone marrow, tendons and feet, and boiled them in water over a period of days. By simmering these parts of the animal in water, compounds like collagen, gelatin, amino acids, vitamins and minerals are released into the liquid to provide a nutrient dense liquid called bone broth. Bone broths have been used as the staple or base for many traditional and cultural dishes because they are rich in natural flavour, easy to digest, easy to make, economical and they boost healing within the body.

Here are the top 8 reasons why you should drink bone broth:

  • 1. Heals leaky gut – The gelatin contained in bone broth helps to heal, seal and soothe the gut lining and in doing so can be very helpful for reducing intestinal inflammation, reversing leaky gut syndrome and other digestive problems.
  • 2. Aids sleep – The amino acid, glycine, found in bone broth helps people to sleep better and also improves memory and brain function.
  • 3. Immune booster – The gelatin and collagen contained in broth supports gut health and its high amino acid profile helps to reduce inflammation. It’s also rich in minerals that support the immune system and contains healing compounds such as glutamine, glycine, proline and collagen.
  • 4. Nutrient absorption – Broth is a wonderful source of bio-available nutrients in an easy to digest form and it also enhances the absorption of nutrients from other foods.
  • 5. Supports skin, nails, hair, teeth and joint health – Broth is rich in collagen, glucosamine and chondroitin sulphates and other compounds which support skin, nail, hair, teeth and joint health. It helps to support the connective tissue in your body and helps your nails and hair to grow well and strong.
  • 6. Aids detoxification – The amino acid glycine in bone broth can aid the cells to detoxify from chemicals and toxins. The livers ability to detox toxins from your body is dependent on the amount of glycine available in the diet.
  • 7. Supports adrenal health – When we have stress in our lives, our bodies, mind and the adrenals can become overworked and undernourished. By consuming bone broth, it provides the adrenal glands with the support and nourishment they need.
  • 8. It’s economical – It’s very inexpensive and a great way to utilize old vegetables or vegetable scraps that you’ve saved, leftover roast chicken carcasses or meat bones. You can also purchase grass-fed bones from your local butcher for a really great price.

What’s The Difference Between Broth, Stock and Bone Broth?


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Many people assume that “stock”, “broth” and “bone broth” are all the same thing and that’s true in that they often start out the same way as they utilize left over vegetables, meat, bones, salt, herbs or spices which are all simmered in a large pot of water together, to extract as much flavour from the ingredients as possible. After this the contents of the pot are strained leaving the liquid behind to be collected and used. However, it turns out that there is a slight difference between them.

  • Broth: is water simmered with vegetables, predominantly meat and can also include some bones. The broth is cooked for a short period of time, usually 45 minutes to 2 hours, then strained and seasoned. Usually broth is combined with other ingredients creating a light liquid that’s full of flavour. It can be consumed on its own, used as a base for soups, stews and curries. Broth usually stays fluid when chilled.
  • Stock: is water simmered with vegetables and animal bones. Sometimes the meat might be roasted and still attached to the bones to add more flavour to the stock. The stock isn’t seasoned and is cooked for 4 to 6 hours before it’s strained. The purpose of cooking the stock this way, is to extract the gelatin from the bones, which gives the stock its thick, gelatinous quality and a soft jelly texture when it’s chilled. Stock is used as a base for soups, sauces or gravy.
  • Bone broth: is really a hybrid of broth and stock. The base is more stock-like, as it is usually made from roasted meat and bones. Bone broth is cooked for more than 24 hours. The benefits of cooking it for a long time are that the nutritious minerals and gelatin are extracted from the bones.

Bone broth is very versatile as you can just slow cook the bones or alternatively you can add vegetables, spices and herbs for additional nutrients and extra flavour; before it’s strained and seasoned. You can use the broth in many ways such as a base for soups, stews, curries, sauces and gravy. It can be used to cook rice, grains and vegetables, as well as poaching eggs and meat. Once the bone broth has cooled in the fridge it will separate into layers with the fat rising to the top and the bottom layer will set like a jelly. Don’t throw the fat away though, as it can be used in your cooking.

How to store bone broth

Stock, broth and bone broth can be stored in the refrigerator for several days with the layer of fat on top of it to prevent oxidation or it can be kept in the freezer for several months. A great tip is to pour the liquid into ice cube trays. Once the cubes are frozen, you can transfer them into containers or use zip lock bags for those times you only need a small amount.

Are Store Bought Stocks The Same?

In a word NO! Most brands of stock cubes etc contain large amounts of salt, hydrogenated vegetable oils and MSG – Mono-Sodium-Glutamate which is as I have stated before a known excitotoxin that has detrimental effects on the health of people in particular children. Rarely in these store bought stock cubes etc will see mention of actual food ingredients like vegetables or meats.

Recipe_BookFor some excellent broth recipes and further recipes using broths and much more, I highly recommend the Changing Habits Recipe Book. This is packed full of great, useful and very healing recipes and ideas for those of you wanting to use nutrition to heal or just for general well being. You can get yourself a copy from their website  by clicking here –  Changing Habits Recipe Book

Well there you have it friends, a simple useful and very inexpensive healing food you can make at home. Why not try making some and help keep those winter chills at bay!
Until next time, be well, naturally.



Craig Hitchens – Natural Health Practitioner + Remedial Therapist


My own knowledge

Alternative & Natural Health Disclaimer:

The information contained in this article is accurate at the time of posting but may change thereafter. The information provided on the various natural health subjects from this website of is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as any form of medical advice. The information in the article this disclaimer is linked from is not meant to treat, diagnose, prescribe or cure any ailment. Always check with your health professional before taking any products or following any advice that you believe may conflict with other forms of health care. Always consult your health care professional before you start, stop or change anything that has been previously prescribed. Certain herbs and holistic remedies are unsuitable to take if you are pregnant or nursing and must always be cleared by your health professional before use.

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