Five Vital Considerations for your Bone Broth
Bone broth may quite possibly be one of the oldest meals on record. Hippocrates was known to extol its virtues, and according to Dr. Kaayla Daniel, vice president of the Weston A. Price Foundation. And it does have proven medicinal values.
When making your own broth or buying here are five vital considerations.
#1 – When making the broth at home remember that to get the most out of your bones you’ll need to cook them for several hours (many recipes you’ll see suggest 12, 14 or even 16 hours). Also, we suggest you roast the bones. This step not only adds flavor, but helps release the vital nutrients like proline, glucosamine, glycine and chondroitin sulfate. All of these are needed by the body to maintain optimal health.
#2 – Whether you buy it or make it at home, make sure it maintains the gelatin content. Don’t skim it off if you make it and if you're buying look for high gelatin content. The more gelatinous the broth, the more nourishing it will tend to be. The collagen that leaches out of the bones when slow-cooked is one of the key ingredients that make broth so healing. According to Dr. Daniel, if the broth gets jiggly after being refrigerated, it's a sign that it's a well-made broth. (a good purchased gelatin broth like "Best of the Bone" becomes very thick and gelatinous in the fridge.)
Photo: Best of the Bone - high in gelatin
Consider adding shank or leg bones - which provide lots of bone marrow. Marrow also provides valuable health benefits for your blood and immune health.
Body builders have long used gelatin supplements to support muscle growth. Bone broth is “the raw food version of a gelation supplement” according to Dr. Daniel. Don’t worry, you won’t become huge from eating broth – on the contrary, you’ll have a lean muscle mass increase.
Bone broth is also getting attention for its use in sports medicine. Genuine bone broth contains components of cartilage that help your body produce components of cartilage for your joints. And the studies on gelatin and cartilage protein with regards to arthritis and joint health seems to be getting more extensive by the month. A short summary would be – its really good.
#3 – This may seem a tad odd but keep the fat in your home broth. There are recipes you will see that suggest getting rid of the fat and even the gelatin. However, many of the nutrients from the bone broth and also from the herbs and vegetables care fat soluble. Meaning your body absorbs more of it when it is accompanied with good fat – such as that from bone broth. A good example is turmeric. Turmeric is known for its many wonderful benefits including being highly anti-inflammatory and high in important antioxidants. It is even sold in capsule form now. But it is fat soluble and your body will absorb and use the benefits if ingested with good fats.
# 4 – Use good bones. This may go without saying, but make sure the source of the bones is antibiotic and hormone free. We mentioned good fat is important in helping your body absorb the nutrients – but the downside to that is that toxins such as antibiotics, hormones, pollutants and pesticides are stored in the fat. So you want your bones from a healthy, natural environment. There are select countries that forbid the use of antibiotics and hormones in the raising of cattle but if in doubt look for “organic”.
# 5 - Don’t buy canned or off-the-shelf broth or “stock” from your local store. Unless, of course, it’s a health food store or from the health food section and you can see there is actual gelatin in the broth and there is a short shelf life, meaning no preservatives. Most of the off-the-shelf broths in boxes or cans have no actual vitamin, mineral nutrient value in there. It may taste good because there’s a lot of salt in there or loaded with MSG. They often contain starches and preservatives.
When you get a bone stock the right way, it’s like liquid gold.
For the most nutritionally dense option for a quick broth or to add to your own soups try the liquid gelatine gold, Best of the Bone.
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