The Bone Broth Fast
There’s always something comforting about sipping some hot broth so much so that our grandmothers made hot soup whenever somebody was stricken with the flu. Bone broth is a time-honored remedy for a host of illnesses including colds and digestive problems. Now that science has confirmed its efficacy, this age-old cure is making a comeback with celebrities hailing its benefits.
Going on a bone broth fast is one of the ways to fully experience the benefits of this traditional remedy.
What is a Bone Broth Fast and How Does it Work?
Going on a bone broth fast means you’re going to consume mostly bone broth during the day with very little solid food. It’s not well-suited for everyone, but if you can go on this type of fast, you will get a lot of nutritional benefits. For best results, people go on a bone broth fast for three to four days.
Bone broth is rich in macronutrients and micronutrients, which include vitamins, minerals, electrolytes, and amino acids. It’s also an ideal source of collagen, a type of protein found in the skin, bone marrow, cartilage, ligaments, joints, tendons, and digestive tract lining. Collagen has other components like glycine, amino acids and gelatin, which has health benefits.
What are the Benefits of a Bone Broth Fast?
- It improves digestion. Bone broth contains collagen which is the type of protein found in the lining of the digestive tract. It has been found to be helpful to people suffering from leaky gut syndrome. The gelatin in the bone broth seals up leaks in intestines. It’s used in treating constipation, some food intolerances and chronic diarrhea.
- It makes your skin look youthful and radiant. Collagen makes your skin smoother and more elastic. It also makes your hair, skin and nails healthy and strong.
- It helps keep muscles from wasting away. Bone broth contains glycine, an important amino acid that helps build muscle strength and brings important nutrients that cells use for energy, manufacturing human growth hormone, and regulating blood glucose levels.
- It helps you sleep better. The glycine in the broth as well as other nutrients helps you sleep better and improves your memory.
- It protects your joints and strengthens your bones. Bone broth contains minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus which leach out of the bones as they are being cooked. These nutrients are vital components of healthy bones. It also contains glucosamine, an amino sugar that helps relieve joint pain and chondroitin sulfate which helps prevent osteoarthritis.
- It strengthens the immune system. It allows beneficial bacteria living in your digestive system to thrive. These bacteria are known to give the immune system a much needed boost. Bone broth is so rich in minerals that it has been called a superfood. It has also been shown to help people suffering from auto-immune disorders, with some experiencing total remission.
- It detoxifies the liver. Bone broth increases your body’s supply of glutathione, which is one of the most powerful detoxifying agents in your body.
- It provides your body with essential minerals. Bone broth is a rich source of minerals, electrolytes, and other nutrients that are important for normal body function.
- It gives you an energy boost. Those who have tried the bone broth fast reported an increase in their energy levels.
How to Make a Good Bone Broth
The first thing you need to do when making a bone broth is to use a wide variety of bones. That’s because bones contain two types of marrow—red and yellow. Red marrow is found in flat bones while yellow marrow is found in the hollow parts of long bones where fats are stored.
Red marrow has valuable health benefits. It is rich in blood stem cells which, when ingested, build your body’s strength and boost your immunity.
You can use the bone of any farm animal—chicken, cow, pig, etc. The best bones to use are from animals that are free-range and organic or grass-fed.
Be sure to cut the bones into small pieces. This shortens the cooking time and ensures that more nutrients seep into the broth.
- Put the bones inside a large pot filled with clean water. Make sure that the pot has enough space for water to boil without spilling over.
- Add two tablespoons of white vinegar, apple cider vinegar or wine before boiling the bones. The vinegar or the wine helps draw out more nutrients from the bones.
- Heat the stock slowly over medium fire and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat and allow it to simmer for six hours. Remove the scum that rises to the top.
- For best results, cook the bones slowly. The cooking process allows the nutrients to be fully extracted from the bones. Suggested cooking time for chicken bones is 6 to 48 hours. For beef bones, it’s 12 to 72 hours.
When the broth cools, you will notice a hardened layer of fat on the surface. This layer protects the broth so don’t discard it unless you’re ready to consume the broth.
Use the bone broth within 3 days. You can lengthen its shelf life by freezing it. You can drink the broth or use it for soup recipes.
What Do People Say About Bone Broth Fasts?
Hollywood stars Shailene Woodley, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Salma Hayek all swear by the health benefits of bone broth. A reporter, Erica Tempesta, went on a bone broth diet and lost 10 pounds in three weeks. Basketball star Kobe Bryant credits bone broth for fixing his raptured Achilles tendon. Proponents of the bone broth diet include Dr. Mehmet Oz, a TV personality, and Dr. Kellyann Petrucci, a nutritionist and author.
PaleoHacks has a discussion where several people report getting good results from having a bone broth fast. This including having the symptoms of irritable bowel movement clear up within days and having their immune system strengthened.
However, not all people are enthusiastic about bone broth. Kiera Butler, a senior editor at Mother Jones blog, claims that the bone broth diet is nothing more than a hyped-up old practice. In one of her blog posts, she quotes nutritionist Andy Bellati as saying, “I get a little peeved when I see (bone broth) described as a ‘healing food’—it just sets people up for high expectations.”
With research and scientific data backing the health benefits of bone broth, there is very little doubt, if at all, that it has nutritional merits. The best way to find out what a bone broth fast can do for you is to try it yourself.