Bone broths are described as soothing, nutrient-dense additions to our diet. Bone Broths are said to be rich in collagen and gelatine; These provide the amino acids glycine, glutamine, proline, lysine and arginine. Bone broth also contains trace amounts of minerals like calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. The nutrient quality and density of your broth will depend upon the quality of the ingredients you use. Hence it is best to utilise grass fed, free range beasts and vegetables that are spray free. Non-organic ingredients may add pesticides, herbicides and other deleterious chemicals to your broths which may mitigate the healthful benefits of your bone broth.
Collagen is a protein made from a combination of amino acids. It is an umbrella term for all connective tissues and there are four main types of collagen. Type I is found in tendons, ligaments and bones and plays a large role in wound regeneration and aids bone strengthening. Type II is found primarily in cartilage. It us utilised in the immune system and repairs and seals the gut lining making it beneficial to treatment of leaky gut and problematic bowel diseases. Type III is found in the connective tissues such as the skin, lungs, uterus, intestine and vascular systems. Type III provides strength and resilience to these tissues.
Gelatine is the cooked form of collagen and it supports skin, joint and digestive health. Gelatine’s action which supports these systems is its ability to strengthen connective tissue throughout the body. This being so, it also aids the growth and strength of hair and nails.
Glycine is said to support detoxification processes, digestion, aid muscle repair and support blood sugar levels. It is utilised in the formation of DNA and RNA and other protein formations within the body. Glycine is required for glutathione production which is a prominent antioxidant within our bodies. It is involved in gluconeogenesis (the manufacture of glucose from proteins in the liver) therefore aiding in the regulation of blood sugar levels. It encourages creatinine formations which aids muscle repair and growth. Glycine has a calming effect on the excitatory neurotransmitters, easing symptoms such as overactive minds. It is also converted into serine, a neurotransmitter that supports mental alertness, memory, mood and decreases mental stress.
Proline is beneficial to good skin health, especially when taken with vitamin C. It is also said to reverse atherosclerosis by supporting blood vessel walls to release cholesterol. This has the benefit of reducing the potential of blockages in the blood vessels. It aids in the breakdown of proteins and the creation of healthy muscle cells.
Glutamine is also found in a bone broth. Glutamine aids gut wall healing. Consequently, glutamine is beneficial in decreasing symptoms of leaky gut and gut disorders where the immune system may be functioning improperly. Glutamine is also a precursor to the calming neurotransmitter GABA.
Bone broth may even contain glucosamine and chondroitin. These nutrients may support and provide comfort to joints. Chondroitin is a component of glycosaminoglycans which stimulate the production of collagen and hinder cartilage degradation.
***You may wish to keep the broth on a low heat throughout the day and scoop out the liquid as required. You may add more water to it from time to time and keep it going. Turn the stock pot off at night and back on in the morning. This can be continued for up to four to five days.
Natalee Durrant – Naturopath and Medical Herbalist