The Bone Broth Trend, Explained

by Kate Chynoweth
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The Bone Broth Trend, Explained

Bone broth remains a trendy health food superstar, and with the arrival of chilly weather, a steaming bowl of broth does have wholesome appeal. It’s also easier than ever to buy pre-made. Packaged versions are everywhere from freezer sections to grab-and-go cases, and you can get it by the cup at hip broth counters or upscale butcher shops. Fans who claim it vastly improves health even suggest drinking broth in the morning instead of coffee or after a workout. Whether or not you go to those extremes, here’s what you need to know.

WHAT IS BONE BROTH?

While the term has a mystical ring, rest assured that “bone broth” is essentially a new name for old-fashioned stock. These are simple, richly flavored liquids made from simmering bones in water, sometimes with aromatics like onion and celery. The long cooking time helps extract bone marrow, a soft, nutritious substance from the animal bones, which contains a high percentage of fat, collagen, amino acids and minerals.

Bone broth first exploded in popularity a couple years ago thanks in part to the rise in popularity of the Paleo lifestyle. The diet’s emphasis on grass-fed meat and homemade, additive-free, unprocessed food makes bone broth a no-brainer. The current passion for rediscovering time-honored superfoods (chia, anyone?) also helped it gain traction.


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WHAT IT DOES

According to some, bone broth can help build immunity, aid digestion, combat inflammation, improve suppleness in the skin and even increase dopamine levels. While the extensive claims have yet to be proven by hard science, proponents have a good point when they conjure up the long history of broth as a healing elixir. Longstanding customs everywhere from China to Italy follow the tradition of giving broth for improved well-being, particularly in connection with the immune system and digestive health. In a study from 2000 that appeared in the medical journal Chest, a mild reduction in inflammation related to respiratory tract infection symptoms was noted in people eating chicken soup.

WHY IT’S WORTH TRYING

Bone broth is extremely easy to make at home, and it freezes well for later use. Plus, by making your own, you can ensure that it’s wholesome and made without additives or extra salt. The benefits gained by drinking bone broth may actually come more from the change in lifestyle created by drinking it regularly. Anyone swapping beverages containing caffeine, sugar or alcohol for comparatively more nutritious broth should experience benefits.

If nothing else, it’s a great way to warm up this fall and winter.

Related

  • kendallvon

    Thank you for the article! I’ve been asking around for almost a year re: what is the difference between bone broth and stock? Now I have my answer!

  • Skr

    Is there a way to hide articles on My Fitness Pal? This dreadful picture of a bird carcass floating in a pot of oily liquid keeps appearing at the top of my MFP newsfeed every time I open the ap.

    • Ela Lewis-Porter

      Hey it’s trendy!

    • Vince

      Heh – I don’t know but good point. The author didn’t pick the most compelling bone broth image to put front and center.

  • No Days Off

    I like to use the chocolate bone broth from infowars. I mix it with milk or even with some hot cocoa and it tastes delicious! I notice when I take it my joints don’t hurt as much. I think it’s the turmeric in it. Good stuff. Haven’t tried the other flavors yet.

  • Brian Albro

    Iv been doing this for 2 years straight everyday for lunch drink 23 oz make chicken beef pork turkey make it in a slow cooker. Was diagnosed with ra dr wanted to put me on pills for life with cancer side affects. Came across this and decided to try it 2 years later have no joint pain just by drinking this. No pills no dr and haven’t been sick once. Make sure if you make it you get that jello look.

  • Vince

    Even though the science hasn’t caught up, it’s easy to see why bone broth could be powerful. After all, it relies on bones and should extract at least some nutrients from them in the process. This alone should offer health benefits, as some of those compounds may be rare in other parts of our diet.

  • This article is a must read for everyone who want to include good dietary habits in their lifestyle, but are unable to do so due to time constraints. The idea of easy-to-make broths having nutritious ingredients like celery, chicken, and onions, will fulfill the daily quota of protein, vitamins and minerals in our diet; apart from the fact that they would also be ideal comfort food in the coming winter months.

  • P Coppola

    A basic stock takes a relatively short amount of time, while a bone broth can take overnight in order to soften the bones.

    • lookingahead

      Add apple cider vinegar when cooking. It helps to soften the bones.

      • P Coppola

        Soooo great! Thx!

      • sodagrrl

        Don’t add too much, though, or you’ll have a less versatile broth due to the taste.

        • lookingahead

          Yes, good point. Just a splash, 2 tablespoons or less depending on volume, will do. I usually use 1 tablespoon.

  • Bone broth is one of the trends I can actually get on board with. It’s not pretending to be a miracle cure or anything…It’s just chock full of nutrients and SUPER TASTY. Plus, make it a whole meal by adding veggies, herbs, and cooked meats! Yum!!