Thursday, April 18, 2013

Beef Bone Broth

Major Constituents of Bones and Bone Broth


Cartilage is formed primarily from collagen and elastin proteins, but also contains glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), chondroitin sulfate, keratin sulfate, and hyaluronic acid. The cartilage from joints is the kind incorporated into bone broth.
Chondroitin sulfate is a structural component of cartilage and is essential in maintaining the integrity of the extracellular matrix. It also lines the blood vessels, and has been found to play a role in lowering cholesterol and the incidence of heart attacks. It is often sold as a supplement for treating joint pain associated with osteoarthritis and has been shown to improve inflammatory conditions of the gastrointestinal tract.
Studies have found shark cartilage to be useful in the treatment of joint disease and in the stimulation of immune cells, but these supplements can be very expensive. Using cartilage-rich beef knuckles, chicken feet, trachea, and ribs in a bone soup can be an effective and easily absorbable alternative. Cartilage may be useful in the treatment of:
·                  Arthritis
·                  Degenerative joint disease
·                  Inflammatory bowel disease
·                  Lowered immune function

Bone Marrow

There are 2 types of marrow in bones, yellow and red. At birth, all bone marrow is red, and as we age it gradually converts to the yellow type until only about half of our marrow is red. In cases of severe blood loss, the yellow marrow can change back to red marrow as needed, in order to increase blood cell production.
The yellow marrow is concentrated in the hollow interior of the middle portion of long bones, and is where lipids and fats are stored. The red marrow is found mainly in the flat bones, such as the hip bone, sternum, skull, ribs, vertebrae and scapula, and in the cancellous ("spongy") material at the proximal ends of the long bones such as the femur and humerus. Red marrow is where the myeloid stem cells and lymphoid stem cells are formed.
The red marrow is an important source of nutritional and immune support factors extracted in the cooking of bone soup. It contains myeloid stem cells which are the precursors to red blood cells, and lymphoid stem cells, the precursors to white blood cells and platelets. The red marrow produces these immature precursor cells, which later convert to mature cell outside the marrow.
·                  Red blood cells carry oxygen to other cells in the body
·                  White blood cells are essential for proper functioning of the immune system
·                  Platelets are important for clotting

Glycine and Proline

Glycine and proline are particularly important amino acids present in bone broth. Glycine is a simple amino acid necessary in the manufacture of other amino acids. It is a vital component in the production of heme, the part of the blood that carries oxygen. It is also involved in glucogenesis (the manufacture of glucose), supports digestion by enhancing gastric acid secretion, and is essential for wound healing. It is a precursor amino acid for glutathione and large amounts are needed for the liver to detoxify after chemical exposure.
Broths can be used in modified fasting and cleansing programs. In these situations, glycine is used for gluconeogenesis and to support phase I and II detoxification. During fasting, because little or no food or energy source is being consumed, protein tissues such as muscle often break down. With broth, glycine is consumed, which limits or prevents degeneration during the fast and is also beneficial to the detoxification process.
Proline is an amino acid essential to the structure of collagen and is therefore necessary for healthy bones, skin, ligaments, tendons and cartilage. It is found in small amounts in many foods, but vitamin C is necessary to metabolize proline into its active form. Small amounts can be manufactured by the body, but evidence shows that adequate dietary protein is necessary to maintain an optimal level of proline in the body. It has also been shown to have a beneficial effect on memory and in the prevention of depression. Glycine and proline needed for:
·                  Manufacture of glucose
·                  Enhancing gastric acid secretion
·                  Soft tissue and wound healing
·                  Healthy connective tissue
·                  Effective detoxification by the liver
·                  Production of plasma

Collagen and Gelatin

There are at least 15 types of collagen, making up about 25% of all the protein in the body. It is present in bones, ligaments, tendons and skin (type I collagen), in cartilage (type II collagen), and in bone marrow and lymph (type III collagen, called reticulin fiber). The word collagen comes from the root "kola", meaning glue.
Basically, collagen is the same as gelatin. Collagen is the word used for its form when found in the body, and gelatin refers to the extracted collagen that is used as food. Bone broth produces a rubbery gelatin when cooled. Most commercial gelatin products are made from animal skin and often contain MSG, but broth made from bones produces a much more nutritious gelatin that contains a wide range of minerals and amino acids.
Poor wound healing, bleeding gums, and bruising are often been attributed to vitamin C deficiency, however the problem is actually a collagen deficiency, as vitamin C is needed to synthesize collagen. Gelatin has also been found to help heal the mucus membranes of the gastrointestinal tract in cases of inflammation such as irritable bowel syndrome or in "leaky gut syndrome".
Gelatin is rich in the amino acids proline and glycine. Although it is not a complete protein itself, it provides many amino acids and therefore decreases the amount of complete protein needed by the body. Dr. N. R. Gotthoffeer spent 20 years studying gelatin and found that convalescing adults who have lost weight due to surgery, dysentery, cancer and other diseases fare much better if gelatin is added to their diet. Studies on gelatin show that it increases the digestion and utilization of many dietary proteins such as beans, meat, milk and milk products. Collagen is helpful in:
·                  Soft tissue and wound healing
·                  Formation and repair of cartilage and bone
·                  Healing and coating the mucus membranes of the gastrointestinal tract
·                  Facilitating digestion and assimilation of proteins


Minerals are essential to life, providing the basis for many important functions in the body. They are necessary for the development of connective tissue and bone, create electrical potential that facilitates nerve conduction, and are catalysts for enzymatic reactions. Many people in the U.S. are deficient in one or more minerals, usually due to dietary deficiencies or poor absorption. Broth offers easily absorbed extracted minerals and supports utilization of the minerals by promoting the health of the intestinal tract.
Bone is an excellent source of calcium and phosphorus, and to a lesser degree, magnesium, sodium, potassium, sulfate and fluoride. Hydrochloric acid, produced by the stomach, helps to break down food but is also necessary to extract elemental minerals from food. For this reason, when making bone broth, an acid is necessary in order to extract the minerals from the bone. This is the purpose of adding a "splash" of vinegar when making broth.
·                  Calcium is necessary for healthy bones, muscle contraction and relaxation, proper clotting and tissue repair, normal nerve conduction, and endocrine balance. Calcium deficiency includes symptoms of osteomalacia and osteoporosis, brittle nails, periodontal disease, muscle cramps and spasms, palpitations, depression, insomnia, and hyperactivity.
·                  Phosphorus is necessary for the generation of energy in the body, as it is an important ingredient of ATP. It is also a critical component of cell membranes and helps regulate intracellular pressure. A deficiency in phosphorus can lead to symptoms such as fatigue, weakness, muscle weakness, celiac disease, osteomalacia, and seizures.
·                  Magnesium is the most common dietary deficiency in the U.S. The mineral is involved in over 300 enzyme reactions, is a cofactor for vitamins B1 and B6, and is involved in the synthesis of proteins, fatty acids, nucleic acids and prostaglandins. Proper nerve transmission, muscle contraction and relaxation, and parathyroid gland function are dependent on magnesium.


Cold Water

4 carrots, peeled and chopped

1 head of celery, chopped

2 onions, chopped

4 cloves of garlic, chopped

4 lbs of Grass Fed Beef Marrow Bones

2 tbsp Sea Salt

1/4 cup of Raw Apple Cider Vinegar (This aids in the extraction of minerals without really altering the flavor)

In a piece of cheesecloth add the following dried herbs:

1 tsp Rosemary

1 tsp Thyme

1 tsp bay leaves

Tie cheesecloth shut and let it float in the broth


  1. Roast your bones beforehand. This adds color and flavor. For big bones like beef, 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes usually works. I've read that not roasting bones beforehand results in a very bad smell while your bones are simmering for hours, and an unpleasant taste. I've always roasted mine and added veggies to my broth to add flavor and nutrients. It always smells so good and tastes great!
  2. Dump your chopped vegetables in the bottom of a slow cooker. Drop in roasted bones, sprinkle on salt and drizzle with vinegar.
  3. Add enough water to cover and fill your slow cooker near the top and cook on low for 24 hours. The longer it goes the more nutrients your broth has and the better it tastes.
  4. When your broth is finished strain it through a fine wire mesh strainer. Discard the vegetables and store broth in glass mason jars. The broth will keep for 5 days in the fridge, so I suggest you freeze what you’re not going to use up within 5 days. Will keep in the freezer for months. To thaw let broth set in fridge for 2 days or so.
To drink broth, just pour how ever much you would like into a small saucepan over low heat till heated. Broth can also be used in place of stocks and vegetable broths, in recipes like soups and such. 

Bone broth is great for healing Leaky Gut Syndrome. It helps to restore the healthy gut flora and heals and seals the gut. 

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