by Soraya Saffarinia

If you’ve ever made bone broth, or had it made for you, you probably know how nourished it can make you feel.  Furthermore, due to bone broth’s mineral and amino acids bioavailability, it can help heal the wounds from a surgery, support your joints, prevent osteoporosis, and much more.

diagram-of-basic-bone-structure

Diagram of basic bone structure, showing that bone is made up of not only calcium but proteins like collagen. Osteoblasts must build bone proteins prior to calcium attachment because calcium cannot attach to bone without bone proteins.

The following are some of the benefits of bone broth:

  • Bone broth is a good source of the amino acids Proline, glycine and glutamine. These amino acids aid in making collagen and cartilage, raise our immunity and heal our gut. (Daniel,K.T., Fallen,S. 2014).
  • Bone broth is a source of chondroitin sulfate, keratin sulfate and hyaluronic acid, important components of cartilage, and relieves joint discomfort associated with osteoarthritis. (Grogan, SP., et al. 2013); (Schauss,A., et al. 2012).
  • Bone broth can reduce inflammation, and strengthen our immune system to combat infectious diseases and cancer (Daniel,K.T., Fallen,S. 2014); (Prudden.1985).
  • The gelatinous bone broth contains the denatured/broken down collagen proteins that are now easier for our body to utilize. Collagen is the key structural protein in our connective tissues. It is found in our tendons, ligaments, cartilage, skin, bone, and muscle (Axe,J. 2016).
  • Presence of collagen is essential in prevention of osteoporosis (Shuster,S. 2005).
  • When collagen is made available to the wound bed, closure can occur, thus bone broth can contribute to wound healing and speed recovery after surgery (Sabiston. 2012).

    A diagram of the aggregan aggregate (proteoglycans) and Cartilage molecules in our cartilage.

Here’s a favorite bone broth recipe to try at home:

Ingredients

  • 2-3 pounds bones (It can be from a chicken, turkey, pheasant, lamb, beef, pork or other; marrow bones with all the tendons and cartilage are best).
  • 10-12 cups water
  • 1- 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar or lemon juice (The vinegar’s/lemon juice acidity helps draw the minerals from the bones.)
  • 3-4 cups vegetables (optional) — It can be any leftover vegetables you already have; include colorful, green leafy vegetables.
  • Any favorite herb or spice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparations

  1. Place bones, vegetables, herbs, salt and pepper into a crockpot, or a big pot. Pour in water and apple cider vinegar or lemon juice.
  2. Allow the ingredients to simmer for about 24 hours, or for a minimum of 12 hours (simmer longer for beef or pork bones, less for chicken or smaller bones).
  3. Remove and discard the bones, strain out the vegetables, pour the broth hot into airtight glass jars, allow to cool and refrigerate.
  4. Use/drink broth within a few days.

Bone broth can be consumed many ways. You can sip a glass of warm broth like tea, or use it in your soups and stews. You can also cook vegetables in bone broth instead of oil.

Note: The source of the bones/meat is important. Please know the source that bones/meat come from. The most desirable condition is a pastured animal raised in a large “clean pasture”.

The Weston A. Price Foundation describes the benefits of bone broth as follows:

“Science validates what our grandmothers knew. Rich homemade chicken broths help cure colds. Stock contains minerals in a form the body can absorb easily—not just calcium but also magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulfur and trace minerals. It contains the broken down material from cartilage and tendons–stuff like chondroitin sulfates and glucosamine, now sold as expensive supplements for arthritis and joint pain.”

Nutrition and environment play an essential role in our health. More and more we come to the conclusion that our ancestors knew best and had the ultimate nutrition we are now striving to have; from their ferments to their cultivation of their own crops, in the sun, on “pure soil” and raising their animals on the “clean land” while being surrounded by the beneficial bacteria from the soil, and the livestock to making their wholesome bone broth.

Soraya SaffariniaSoraya Saffarinia is a nutritional consultant at Sebastopol Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. She works with patients to help them understand how whole-foods nutrition can be used to promote health and to prevent illness, and offers them a nutritional plan to fit their particular needs. For more information about Ms. Saffarinia or the services she offers, please visit our nutritional counseling page.

 

 

 

Resources:

Grogan, S. P., et al. 2013. Influence of cartilage extracellular matrix molecules on cell phenotype and neocartilage 2014 Jan;20(1-2):264-74. doi: 10.1089/ten.TEA.2012.0618. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23962090

 Murphy, J.M., et al. 1999. Distribution of cartilage molecules in the developing mouse. Matrix Biology. Vol 18. Issue 5: 487-497  jointhttp://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0945053X99000426

Daniel, K. T., Fallen, S. 2014. Nourishing Broth: An Old fashioned Remedy for the Modern World. New York: Grand Central life and style.

Axe, J., 2016. Bone Broth Benefits for Digestion, Arthritis, and Cellulite. Dr. Axe, Food is Medicine. 2016 Dr.Axe.com

Schauss, A.; Stenehjem, J.; Park, J.; Endres, J. & Clewell, A. (2012). “Effect of the novel low molecular weight hydrolyzed chicken sternal cartilage extract, BioCell Collagen, on improving osteoarthritis-related symptoms: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial”. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 60 (16): 4096–101. doi:10.1021/jf205295u. PMID 22486722 Shuster, S (2005). “Osteoporosis, a unitary hypothesis of collagen loss in skin and bone”. Medical Hypotheses 65 (3): 426–32. doi:10.1016/j.mehy.2005.04.027. PMID 15951132

Schauss, A.; Stenehjem, J.; Park, J.; Endres, J. & Clewell, A. (2012). “Effect of the novel low molecular weight hydrolyzed chicken sternal cartilage extract, BioCell Collagen, on improving osteoarthritis-related symptoms: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial”. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 60 (16): 4096–101. doi:10.1021/jf205295u. PMID 22486722

Sabiston textbook of surgery board review, 7th edition. Chapter 5 wound healing, question 14