Have you heard more people talking about bone broth? Have you ever wondered if it’s any good? In this article, we’ll talk about what bone broth is, what it’s good for, and what it isn’t good for.
In the end, we’ll help you come to know whether or not bone broth is just a trend.
What is bone broth?
Bone broth is a foodstuff made with water and meat bones. Usually, bone broths are used in soups, stews, and other broth-based recipes, although, you can consume it without adding it to anything else. There are many people out there who simply enjoy drinking bone broth as if it was a cup of hot tea!
There are some minor differences between bone broth and other meat stocks. You make bone broths with meat bones, meaning that there is usually meat and bone in the water that you’re turning into a broth. Stock, on the other hand, is usually just made with bone. Additionally, broth has seasoning added to it while stock just has onions, carrots, and celery in it. The last difference is how long they’re cooked for. Broth usually cooks for two hours whereas stocks take six hours.
Bone broths are continuing to grow in popularity as a health supplement, but how good are they for you really?
Bone Broth Benefits
In today’s world, bone broth is getting more and more attention with some pretty big claims on the vast ways it can help you… But keep in mind, there is no magical food or supplement that cures everything so let’s dig into what bone broth is good for!
Alleviates cold symptoms – Bone broths made with chicken have been shown to help alleviate certain cold symptoms. That’s because there are aminos in chicken meat which help clear mucus. Chicken broth clears mucus by reducing inflammation in the nasal cavity. That being said, you don’t have to buy a special chicken broth next time you feel sick. You could just buy some chicken noodle soup at the grocery store.
Helps soothe your stomach – Bone broth is warm, can be flavorful, and comforting on the stomach. It makes a great base for soups or to have on its own. If you are feeling ill, or having stomach distress, sipping on bone broth can help alleviate those symptoms and help you feel better. Which who doesn’t want to feel better?
What’s important here is that there are some benefits to bone broth, but most of the claims out there are largely unfounded.
Bone Broth Drawbacks
Although bone broth can have some positive effects, there are some drawbacks to it too. One of the biggest drawbacks to bone broth is that most of the promises which wellness-blogs make regarding bone broth aren’t backed by science.
Here are some more specific drawbacks to bone broth.
Doesn’t improve skin, hair, and nail health – One of the big promises people make is that bone broth can help restore your body’s collagen which will improve skin, hair, and nail health. The fact is, there’s usually not enough collagen in bone broth to make a difference to your skin, nail, or hair health. There are plenty of other collagen supplements, or hair skin and nail products, out there that would be more beneficial on a consistent basis than bone broth.
Also, just because you consume collagen doesn’t mean that your body will use it for specifically what you want to use it for: Hair, Skin, and Nails. Your body will actually break down the collagen and use its amino acids wherever they are needed inside your body.
Doesn’t improve gut inflammation – The theory behind this is that collagen-rich foods can enter the body directly without causing stomach irritation or inflammation. But as we already said, bone broth doesn’t contain that much collagen. So it just sits in your stomach and waits to be digested like any other food you’ll eat.
It isn’t exactly cost effective – A big claim is that you can just use the bones from the meats that you cook to save on the price. The problem lies… how ofter are you grilling a whole chick, or making pounds and pounds of meat that still have the bones that you can save and make your own broth? In most cases, not very often. So now you are looking at paying $3 to $7 a pound for bones, and you need about 4-5 pounds to make about 8 cups worth of bone broth… looking at drinking a cup a day…it starts adding up quickly. Not including veggies and other things you might add. That money can be better spent in other areas of your health and wellness routine to deliver a bigger positive impact.
You don’t need to buy expensive bottles of name-brand broth or spend hours making your own broth. Just have some soup once in a while instead.
Is Bone Broth Beneficial or Just a Trend?
Bone broth is like everything else. There are some good things about it, and there are some bad things about it as well. The good news is, if you didn’t purposefully include bone broth in your diet, you’d likely get those aminos from other parts of your diet.
As far as the research shows, bone broths might taste good in soup, but that’s about it. You might as well just look at bone broths as the latest health trend that will eventually go away.
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*This post was written by Will Grumke. He is a NASM Certified Personal Trainer, NASM Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist, NASM Certified Weight Loss Specialist, NASM Certified Behavioral Change Specialist, and CrossFit Level 1 Trainer.