Sunday, May 19, 2019

Can Sipping Bone Broth Make You Look Younger?

Can Sipping Bone Broth Make You Look Younger?

Whether you’re fully on board with the bone broth trend or still skeptical, there’s no denying its popularity. Serena Poon, a chef, nutritionist, and Reiki master based in Los Angeles, says that, although bone broth has been used in Chinese medicine for thousands of years, it wasn’t until a few years ago that the liquid developed a reputation for being a health and wellness superfood. The reason you’ve been hearing all about it recently can be attributed to the fact that it fits into two incredibly popular eating approaches: the ketogenic (keto) diet and the paleo diet.

Bone broth is technically a stock that’s made by simmering the bones of animals with vegetables, spices, and herbs for a long stretch of time, usually a day or two. Poon says that the resulting nutrient-packed liquid is rich in anti-inflammatory amino acids, bioavailable minerals, and collagen. Bone broth has been linked to a host of benefits, such as relieving joint pain and arthritis symptoms, strengthening bones, and promoting a healthy immune system and gut, according to Harvard Health Publishing.

It’s also said to improve skin quality because it is rich in collagen, which is a protein found in the skin that’s prized for its ability to promote elasticity and help the skin stay wrinkle-free and youthful, according to the Cleveland Clinic. Collagen production declines with age, accelerating around age 40, according to a study published in July 2014 in the Journal of Anatomy. The study reported that a 1-year-old had 85.77 percent of skin area occupied by collagen while a 49-year-old and 90-year-old had 72.45 percent and 56.63 percent, respectively.

That steady decline in collagen is why there’s an entire industry dedicated to how to get more of it, whether topically through anti-aging potions or by ingesting collagen powder, supplements, or drinks containing collagen, such as bone broth.

The thinking is by drinking collagen-rich bone broth, the collagen will then be fast-tracked to the face to combat wrinkles.

What Does Research Say About Potential Bone Broth Benefits?

It’s true that there is a strong gut-skin connection, and it’s something that’s being studied more and more, says Peyton Berookim, MD, a double board-certified gastroenterologist, and internal medicine physician, and the director of the Gastroenterology Institute of Southern California in Beverly Hills. Food allergies, for instance, can manifest on the skin as a rash.

Unfortunately, though, there’s no way to designate which nutrients go where. “Just like eating fat doesn’t directly translate to body fat, as there are other factors involved, neither does eating collagen means an increase in [collagen] levels,” says Isabel Butler, the company nutritionist for the app Spoon Guru.

In other words, sipping on bone broth doesn’t deliver a boost in the skin’s collagen level. Instead, Harvard Health Publishing says that the collagen is broken down into amino acids, just like other proteins, and is transported to whichever of the body’s tissues need it most, with no way of ensuring it’ll go straight to the stubborn crow’s-feet around your eyes. Dr. Berookim says that the nutrients will first go to the essential organs, such as the heart, brain, and liver. “As a result, one’s hair, skin, and nails are usually the first places one may notice the change, since the nutrients are often driven away from them,” Berookim says.

Even if bone broth doesn’t necessarily offer skin-plumping benefits, it doesn’t mean it’s bad for you. It’s rich in protein, with about 6 to 12 grams in each cup, according to Harvard Health Publishing.

But it’s likely not the magic bullet many articles and anecdotes would lead you to believe. Butler says that it’s not a great source of amino acids, and a study published in May 2019 in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism supports that idea. She doesn’t discredit bone broth entirely, however. “I don’t think we should dismiss that this could help people feel better, but make sure we distinguish between scientific evidence and anecdotal information,” she says.

How to broth your own bones at home

There are many who swear it has an effect, but most agree you can’t just buy chicken stock from the grocery store and hope to see changes. Even though there are similarities between homemade broth and store-bought options, the amount of time the pot is left to boil differs drastically. Store-bought options may only boil for an hour, whereas homemade calls for sitting on the stove for as long as two days, according to Harvard Health Publishing. Store-bought stocks may also include unhealthy ingredients, such as sugar, sodium, and artificial colors, so if you’re ready to jump into the bone broth trend, you’ll likely want to make your own at home.

Here’s how to make it, Poon says.


  • Serves About 12
  • Prep Time 10 minutes
  • Cook Time 24-48 hours
  • Total Time 24-48 hours


Ingredients


  • 6 pounds chicken necks, feet, and wings
  • 3 carrots, roughly chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, roughly chopped
  • 2 medium onions, quartered
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp pink Himalayan salt
  • 1 tsp whole peppercorns
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • Half a bunch parsley sprigs
  • 18 to 20 cups cold water (or enough to cover the ingredients in the pot by 3 inches)


Directions


  1. Place all of the ingredients in a 10-quart capacity slow cooker.
  2. Add the water.
  3. Simmer for 24 to 48 hours, skimming the fat occasionally.
  4. Remove from the heat and cool slightly.
  5. Strain out the solids.
  6. Let the stock cool down to the temperature, cover, and cool. The broth should become jellylike.
  7. Use within a week or set for two months. Heat it on the stove before consuming.

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