One of the changes I made in my diet after discovering I had autoimmune disease was to begin a healthier approach to food. As I described in my previous blog, following a Paleo eating plan was a huge game-changer for me. I felt a big difference in pain reduction in my joints and less inflammation in my digestive system.
I avoided foods that contributed to pain in my body and increased the amount of nutrient-dense foods. The body needs these nutrients to heal and nourish itself. I needed a diet high in nutrients for healing and recovery such as fat-soluble vitamins A and D, B vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids as well as minerals and nutrients like zinc, selenium, carotenoids and sulfur.
This means eating a varied diet including meat, fatty fish, shellfish, fermented foods and lots of colorful fruits and veggies. One of my go to gut-healing foods is bone broth rich in collagen, useful for maintaining healthy joints, skin and hair. Gelatin is rich in minerals that is needed to make bones dense and makes it a very restorative and balancing item to include in our diets. I make a batch of chicken bone broth overnight once a week and have it available for lunch alongside a salad and/or fruit.
The benefits are extensive, plus there are many different kinds of bone broths (chicken, beef, fish, from bone broth powder and more) that you can make.
Bone broth stock has been touted to be the No. 1 thing you can consume to:
Treat leaky-gut syndrome
Overcome food intolerances and allergies
Improve joint health
Boost immune system
Aids the Metabolism
Chicken soup isn’t just good for the soul: There’s a reason why it’s a staple by grandmothers and doctors alike when you’re feeling under the weather. All bone broths — beef, chicken, fish, lamb and more — are staples in the traditional diets of every culture and the basis of all fine cuisine, and now a staple in the Paleo diet and the Keto diet. That’s because bone broths are nutrient-dense, easy to digest, rich in flavor and they boost healing.
Boiled and then simmered overnight for 12 hours causes the bones and ligaments to release healing compounds like collagen, proline, glycine and glutamine that have the power to transform your health.
Nutritionists say that your body can easily absorb the minerals including calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulphur and others. They contain chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine, the compounds sold as pricey supplements to reduce inflammation, arthritis and joint pain.
A study of chicken soup (broth) conducted by the University of Nebraska Medical Center wondered what it was in the soup that made it so beneficial for colds and flu. Researchers found that the amino acids that were produced when making chicken stock reduced inflammation in the respiratory system and improved digestion. Also, research is proving it can also boost the immune system and heal disorders like allergies, asthma and arthritis.
Don’t be fooled, if you want real bone broth and real bone broth benefits, you can’t buy it in a can. It’s a must to make yourself at home. You need to get grass-fed bones from your local farmers market or from an online health food store. I find Organic is best and readily available at my local grocery store.
Bone Broth Recipe
- 4 quarts filtered water
- 3-4 lb whole chicken (organic, grass-fed)
- 2 tbs apple cider vinegar
- 1 lg bay leaf
- 3-4 carrots, roughly chopped
- 3-4 stalks celery with leaves, roughly chopped
- 1 lg onion, peeled and roughly chopped
- 12 whole peppercorns
- 2 tsp Pink Himalayan salt
Place all ingredients into a large stock pot and cover with water.
Heat slowly. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer. Remove foam as it rises.
Cook slow at low heat at least 12 hours. A low and slow cook time is necessary in order to fully extract the nutrients in and around the bone.
After cooking, let cool and strain. Reserve chicken and add with whatever veggies you like. I substitute riced cauliflower or spinach for noodles. A layer of fat will harden on top. This layer protects the broth beneath. Discard this layer only when you are about to eat the broth. I immediately use the broth in a basic chicken soup recipe then put up 2-3 mason jars for the rest of the week. Enjoy!