“Good broth will resurrect the dead” -a South American proverb.
So much can be said of the healing properties of broth. Our grandmothers knew best when they gave us rich, chicken broths to cure our common cold, but broth is so much more than that…
Why drink Bone Broth?
“From the moment we stop growing, we start deteriorating”
In Chinese medicine, we see so much of illness and disease come from this idea of ‘dryness’. Arthritis is a great example, it stems from deterioration in the joints that is caused by dryness and age, things naturally become brittle. Starting broth early can help nourish the body and keep this brittleness at bay. Broth contains minerals in a form the body can absorb easily—not just calcium but also magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulphur and trace minerals. It contains the broken down material from cartilage and tendons–stuff like chondroitin, sulphates and glucosamine, now sold as expensive supplements for arthritis and joint pain. You’ll end up saving money and years by doing broth daily now.
But broth isn’t just for arthritis… It’s good to battle stress too. How? Stress causes bodily inflammation, inflammation causes heat and fire which leads to dryness, dehydration and over time our organs become imbalanced. This can lead to symptoms like muscle pain, repetitive stress problems, even insomnia, gastric problems, hormonal issues, high blood pressure, adrenal fatigue, fertility challenges and so on, and so on. Think of broth as a ‘big hug’ for your body, it’s so necessary in this thing called Life.
The RX necessary? 1 cup of Bone Broth every day
In place of your coffee in the morning? Sure. As a 3pm pick me up? Sure. Before bed, like a nourishing cup of tea? Sure. Insert it into your diet and watch the magic happen!
Read this great article from Weston Price that dives deeper into the history of Broth. (It also has Beef and Fish stock recipes)
1 whole free-range chicken or 2 to 3 pounds of bony chicken parts, such as necks, backs, breastbones and wings* gizzards from one chicken (optional) 2-4 chicken feet (optional)
4 quarts cold filtered water
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
1 bunch parsley
(The veggies are not necessary, I like my broth plain, but the vinegar is mandatory to leach the minerals from the bone!)
*Note: Farm-raised, free-range chickens give the best results. Many battery-raised chickens will not produce stock that gels. The Local Butcher Shop and Whole Foods in Berkeley are resources.
If you are using a whole chicken, cut off the wings and remove the neck, fat glands and the gizzards from the cavity. Cut chicken parts into several pieces. (If you are using a whole chicken, remove the neck and wings and cut them into several pieces.) Place chicken or chicken pieces in a large stainless steel pot with water, vinegar and all vegetables except parsley. Let stand 30 minutes to 1 hour. Bring to a boil, and remove scum that rises to the top. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 8-24 hours. The longer you cook the stock, the richer and more flavorful it will be. About 10 minutes before finishing the stock, add parsley. This will impart additional mineral ions to the broth.
Remove whole chicken or pieces with a slotted spoon. If you are using a whole chicken, let cool and remove chicken meat from the carcass. Reserve for other uses, such as chicken salads, enchiladas, sandwiches or curries. Strain the stock into a large bowl and reserve in your refrigerator until the fat rises to the top and congeals. Skim off this fat and reserve the stock in covered containers in your refrigerator or freezer.
Christina Martin is the founder of Tao to Wellness. She is an Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist and Teacher and has been in practice for fifteen years. She holds a Master’s Degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine and is a fellow of the American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine. Christina entered Acupuncture school without ever having an Acupuncture treatment. She simply felt it was her calling.