Health issues have plagued our nation for years. It breaks my heart to see families ripped apart with the loss of a loved one, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Our bodies were designed to heal themselves, but as my mom always says, “garbage in, garbage out”. The standard American diet does far more harm than good and we are the products of what has happened to our food. Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, was a wise man when he said “All disease begins in the gut”. The reason most things start in the gut is because a very large portion of our immune system is located in it. For more information check out this great article from Authority Nutrition. A survey was taken in 2013 that showed 74 percent of Americans are living with GI discomfort. That’s a huge number, and a percentage I really don’t want to be a part of.
I have taken the bull by the horns, so to speak, and transformed my eating habits along with many others here at John Henry’s. According to the American food charts of healthy eating, USDA , my family was eating healthy. I, of course, have access to the most amazing Grass Fed Meats, Free Range Chickens and Pastured Pork. Our meat choices have always been the best because we raise it ourselves and take pride in using organic practices and giving our animals the best and happiest lives possible. I always choose organic options at the grocery store. My family followed the 80/20 rule where 80 % of the foods we ate were very healthy and nourishing, the other 20% was just ok. But we ran into some snags when I was diagnosed with an autoimmune condition and my son developed large patches of eczema that no cream could tame. No natural remedy we tried seemed to help us, so we sought out some guidance from a great holistic doctor. He told us to change our diet and eliminate grains along with other things that cause inflammation in the body. I then found Dr. Axe’s “Heal Your Gut” program and started feeding my family all gut healing foods and introduced bone broth. Within a few weeks, my autoimmune symptoms were gone, and my son’s eczema rashes cleared up. I was so skeptical that these changes would even do anything because I felt like we ate healthy. But what we were missing was the foods to help us heal. Sometimes we took our 80/20 rule and probably let 20% grow to 30% or 40%, but that doesn’t happen anymore. We have kept the nourishing foods at the center of our diet. We have reintroduced some things and will never reintroduce others, but we are ok with that because we have seen such amazing transformations. Bone broth continues to be a staple for me and with every cup of hot liquid I know it is going straight to work on my gut, helping to feed the good bacteria, and keep that intestinal lining strong.
I consume bone broth to:
1) Treat leaky gut syndrome
2) Overcome food intolerances and allergies
3) Improve joint health
4) Reduce cellulite
5) Boost my immune system
Nutrition researchers Sally Fallon and Kaayla Daniel, of the Weston A. Price Foundation, explain that bone broths contain minerals in forms that your body can easily absorb: calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulfur and others. Chicken broth also contains amino acids that reduce inflammation in the respiratory system and improve digestion. Keep in mind that you will not reap these amazing benefits if you are buying a box of “stock” or “broth” at your local grocery store. American food these days has been so commercialized that most of the time you will find flavored water and some grocery store “broths” are loaded with neurotoxins like MSG. You definitely do not want to be drinking that! The real deal bone broth is referred to as nature’s multivitamin. Homemade bone broth is packed full of over 19 bioavailable ( easy for your body to absorb) essential and non essential amino acids, collagen (which helps to keep all your connective tissue in good health), other nutrients that support digestive functions, immunity and brain health. Bone broth is a game changer! It can help you heal so you have the strength to go out and make the world a better place.
Bone broth made in the Instant Pot takes about 4 ½ hours from start to finish. If you chose to make the broth in a stock pot you would want to bring the broth to a boil and then reduce the heat to a very low simmer, allowing it to cook for a minimum of 12 hours and preferably up to 24 hours for chicken or 48 hours for beef. Turn off the heat and allow the broth to cool. Strain it through a fine strainer lined with cheese cloth, the bones and any meat can then be discarded or given to your cat or dog. Our cat, Skywalker, loves broth day! Put the cooled stock in containers for storage in the refrigerator or freezer. Bone Broth can store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days and it is good in the freezer for several months. Be very careful if freezing your broth in mason jars. Unfortunately, I lost about 10-12 jars of broth; I don’t believe the jars I had were meant for freezing because they would break every time. I have since purchased these great BPA free freezer containers. They work amazingly and I have not experienced any cracks or breaks. Remember to leave a space at the top of your container as the broth will expand. A word of caution, do NOT microwave your bone broth. The microwave changes the molecular makeup of the gelatin in homemade broth and it becomes toxic to the liver, kidneys and nervous system! I have a small 1 quart stainless steel pan I use to rewarm my broth. If you know that your body has some healing to do I recommend 2-3 cups of bone broth a day. Sometimes, it is helpful to have 1 cup with each meal. If you are in good health and looking to keep your gut healthy, 1 cup a day is a good rule to live by.
Chicken Feet – They are very high in collagen; even similar to what is found in green leafy vegetables. Click here to see an article discussing the health benefits of chicken feet.
Necks & Backs– All the different small joints in these bones make them the gold standard broth. You cannot go wrong with a mixture of these bones
Soup Bones -These are beef neck bones. They do have some meat still left on them and they are great for your standard beef broth.
Knuckle Bones – Bones from the beef knuckle- these make great broth because of the tendons and other connective tissue still attached to the bones.
Marrow Bones – A great Super food. Bone marrow is nutrient dense and full of vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids and lipids. Consuming bone marrow will help improve brain function, maintain healthy bones, support immune systems, speed up the healing process of any injury.
Oxtail – Just like the name suggests this is beef tail. Believe it or not, the oxtail makes a delicious soups. All of the connective tissue, tendons, ligaments along with the marrow goes through the tail. There is plenty of meat on the tail for a soup or to make a great meaty flavored broth.