In traditional cooking, people often use meat bones as the base for a delicious broth. Besides being the secret to good cooking, bone broth is also incredibly nutritious and has many health benefits. Read on to find out why we should all drink bone broth and make this incredible drink a staple in your diet.
Bone broth base of important protocols to recover health
Drinking bone broth, made from beef or chicken bones and vegetables, can benefit your skin, heart, muscles, joints, and gut health. These meat and vegetable bones can be simmered to make a nutritious bone broth with many benefits.
Proponents of the Paleo and Primal lifestyles favor bone broth for its wide range of nutrients that are hard to find in any other food source.
Meat and bone broth is the basis for important protocols such as the Autoimmune Protocol, to restore health due to its ability to heal and seal the intestinal lining and reduce the overgrowth of harmful microbes.
Broth made from chicken bones can also reduce the migration of immune cells during illness. These are just a few of the many reasons to drink bone broth.
The antiquity of bone broth and the tradition of its use
The ability of broth, and chicken broth in particular, to treat the common cold has long been touted as ancient folk wisdom. It is well accepted that broth of some kind was, and still is, a staple in many traditional cultures.
A central component of functional medicine is using whole foods to nourish your body and get the nutrients it needs to stay healthy. Traditional cultures accomplished this by practicing nose-to-tail eating and consuming all parts of the animal, including: skin, cartilage, tendons, and other gelatin-rich cuts of meat.
This provided a balanced intake of all the amino acids necessary to build and maintain essential structures in the human body.
Bringing bone broth into the modern diet offers an easy and delicious means of obtaining the nutrition from parts of the animal that traditional cultures value.
A study conducted by scientists at the University of Nebraska tried to prove this folklore in 2000 and found that some components of chicken soup could inhibit the migration of innate immune cells called neutrophils, effectively acting as an anti-inflammatory. That could, in theory, reduce the symptoms of the disease
Bone broth is rich in nutrients
Bones contain a large number of minerals, as well as 17 different amino acids, many of which are found in bone broth as proteins like collagen and gelatin.
Although the exact nutritional content varies depending on the bones used, the cooking time and the cooking method, the following nutrients are consistently found in most bone broths.
Gelatin in bone broth
When collagen is simmered, it forms gelatin. This hydrolysis of collagen is irreversible and results in the breakdown of long collagen protein fibrils into smaller protein peptides.
However, its chemical composition is very similar to its original molecule, collagen. Gelatin is what gives bone broth its jelly-like consistency once it has cooled.
Glycine is an amino acid that makes up more than a third of collagen. It also acts as a neurotransmitter, binding to glycine receptors throughout the nervous system and peripheral tissues.
Signaling through this receptor is particularly important in mediating inhibitory neurotransmission in the brainstem and spinal cord.
With 28 different types, collagen makes up about 30 percent of the protein in your body. It is the main component of connective tissues such as tendons, bone, cartilage, ligaments, and skin.
It is also present in the blood vessels, cornea, and lens of the eye. The name collagen comes from the Greek "kólla", which means "glue", and the suffix "gene", which means "to produce".
In fact, early glue was made from collagen more than 8,000 years ago, probably by boiling the skin and tendons of animals. In addition to providing structure, collagen also plays an important role in the development and regulation of tissues.
Proline is an amino acid that makes up about 17 percent of collagen. The addition of hydroxyl groups to proline significantly increases the stability of collagen and is essential for its structure.
Although small amounts of proline can be manufactured in the body, evidence shows that adequate dietary proline is necessary to maintain an optimal level of this amino acid in the body.
Proline is generally not considered a neurotransmitter, but it can bind weakly to glutamate receptors and glycine receptors.
Glutamine is another important amino acid found in bone broth and is the most abundant amino acid in the blood. It is one of the few amino acids that can directly cross the blood-brain barrier.
Intestinal epithelial cells and activated immune cells feed on glutamine for cellular energy.
Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) are complex carbohydrates that participate in many biological processes. They can bind to proteins to form proteoglycans, which are integral parts of connective tissue and synovial fluid, the lubricant that surrounds the joint.
If connective tissue, such as tendons, ligaments and cartilage, is still attached, the bones of the broth will provide our bodies with raw materials for the formation of skin, bones and cartilage, including: hyaluronic acid, chondroitin sulfates, keratan sulfates, dermatan sulfates.
Drinking bone broth provides you with the most important minerals
Bone is also packed with a variety of minerals, including: Magnesium, Calcium, Zinc, Sodium, Potassium, Phosphorus, Manganese, Iron, Copper.
An acid medium is necessary to extract these minerals from your food. When making broth, always add a little vinegar or other acids to extract the most minerals from the bone.
Within the central cavity of the bone is the bone marrow, which consists of two types: red and yellow. Both types contain collagen.
Red bone marrow is the manufacturing site for new immune cells and red blood cells, while yellow marrow consists of healthy fats. It is believed that important nutritional and immune supporting factors can be extracted from the marrow during cooking, but the bioavailability of these factors has not been studied.
As you may have noticed, bone broth is a gold mine, not for nothing our ancestors already knew about its benefits and used it as a remedy for various and important ailments. This remedy has endured today because it works, it is scientifically proven since it is actually a drink that heals. Bone broth is a natural medicine that we should all be taking on a daily basis.