For the most part of 2015 I have had the incredible fortune of working for renowned naturopath and all-round-health-guru, Anthia Koullouros. This was one of the formative experiences that I will take throughout my naturopathic career. Learning about natural medicine and therapy from a truly authentic expert was – and still is – such a gift, and one that I still pinch myself about. As my close friend likes to say, “she’s like… the best naturopath in the world”.
But I digress, among the many lessons I learnt while working in the clinic, there was one glaringly obvious one – drink lots of bone broth. I know. How very “paleo” of me. To be perfectly honest I still feel a bit squeemish about it, but it really is a magical thing. I’ve watched Anthia hand it out like chocolate to all of her clients and days later they already feeling improved and revitalised. On days when Anthia was feeling rundown she drank it like a cup of tea. Straight from the jar. It got me thinking, what is this stuff all about and how do I get in on it?
I dug around and here is what I've found:
Bone broth will help you ward off a cold. Why? The stuff is jam-packed full of proline and glycine - both very important amino acids. These two amino acids are essential for adequate detoxification, extra important when you're fighting off a nasty cold and requiring the liver to eliminate the bad stuff quickly. Glycine is also involved in the process glycogenesis (the creation of glucose), which is essential for providing energy to every cell in the body.
The gelatine in broth works wonders for crappy digestion. The gelatine (containing glutamine) released in the process of making broth acts like a big warm hug for your insides. Gelatine lines the inside of your gastrointestinal tract, creating a coating on your mucous membranes which helps soothe digestion and increase the absorption of micro nutrients in the gut. Again, great when you're poorly and need all the nutrients you can get. You'll notice when you take your first few sips, that your insides feel instantly soothed, it's quote lovely.
It's a superfood for shiny hair, vibrant skin and perfect nails. Yep, you know that stuff "collagen" that everyone injects into their face? Bone broth is loaded with it! So cheap, too!
Bone broth and stock are not the same thing. People often get turned off when they first make a batch because they think all they're drinking is chicken stock. This is not the case. Stock is a what you get when initially boiling down the bones. Broth is what you get when you take said stock and pimp it out with some organic veg and delicious herbs and spices. More on this later.
It'll make your bones super strong.The essential building block of healthy bones, phosphorus, magnesium, and calcium, will seep out during the cooking process leaving you with an amazing natural bone strengthener.
It'll make you joints supple, too. Yep, those glucosamine supplements you hear about for healthy joints can be replaced by your daily cup of broth. Again, a much cheaper, nutritious and environmentally friendly option. ** Always seek doctors approval!
It's anti-inflammatory. The combination of minerals, nutrients, glutamine and additional ingredients like turmeric, apple cider vinegar, herbs and garlic all make for a wonderfully supportive immune tonic - perfect for improving daily health or supplementing a diet when cold and flu season strikes!
So enough of the nitty gritty, if you want more info you can check out the Western A Price foundation. In the meantime, here's my go to recipe!
Golden Anti-Inflammatory Bone Broth (gluten free, paleo, refined sugar free)
1-1.5kgs organic chicken frames
3L filtered water
2 tsp ground turmeric (or fresh if you like)
1 head garlic, peeled and roughy crushed
1 onion, skin removed and roughly chopped
4-5 bay leaves
1 tbs peppercorns
2 tbs apple cider vinegar
1 lemon, halved
2 stalks celery
Place all of the ingredients into a large soup pot and cover. Bring to the boil, and then reduce to a simmer for 4-6 hours. Skim any sediment off the surface of the broth and discard. Allow to cool slightly and then strain mixture (I like to do this twice to remove any grit).
Tip: Wear an apron when straining your stock because the turmeric will happily stain everything in sight. Decant the stock into sterilised jars or make it into a vegetable broth (see below).
** If you have a slow cooker cook on low for 10-14 hours or high for 5-7 hours.
To turn this into a delicious soupy broth add any or all of the below to the strained stock and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
2 carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1/2 cup frozen peas
pinch of himalayan salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
wakame or pulse flakes (dried seaweed)
This stock will last 3-4 days in the fridge or 3 months in the freezer.