I’ve been working on my holistic first aid kit for a few years now and it’s seen me through some crazy cold and flu seasons. I have several supplements, herbs and remedies that I come back to time and time again but my FAVORITE tool in my first aid kit is one you won’t find on the shelf. This tool is what I use as my FIRST course of action when my kids start feeling under the weather. What is it?
The answer: Homemade bone broth.
Yes, that’s right. The number one tool in my holistic first aid kit is BONE BROTH. Sounds crazy? Homemade broth…made with BONES???? What on earth is that? I’m glad you asked… I love talking about bone broth!
My grandma called it stock. Some people call it broth. No matter what you call it, homemade bone broth is a nutritional powerhouse and to date I haven’t found any condition it won’t help. Homemade broth, made with bones in particular, is the first thing I make when my kids start feeling sick. Why is this stuff such liquid gold?
Bone Broth is a mineral POWERHOUSE.
Homemade broth is full of magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium, minerals (and trace minerals) that are depleted in our food supply these days. Think of bone broth as the ultimate multivitamin and electrolyte replacement drink in ONE!
Bone broth heals the digestive tract.
Homemade bone broth is the cornerstone of the GAPS diet, a diet that aims to heal and seal the gut lining. Because bone broth contains gelatin (from the bones), it helps to soothe and repair our gut lining. The digestive tract houses over 80% of the immune system, so if the digestive tract is healthy, you will be too.
Bone broth is highly absorbable.
Just because you pop a vitamin pill, doesn’t mean you are actually absorbing the nutrients from that pill. In order for us to absorb the vitamins and minerals from a supplement, the digestive system needs to be working in top form. Things like dysbiosis (imbalance of got flora) and low stomach acid impact the body’s ability to absorb nutrients from supplements, something that is very common due to our modern diet and environment. Broth is a nutrient-dense, whole food in LIQUID form making it highly bioavailable and absorbable—a literal liquid gold.
Bone broth helps the body get into an alkaline state.
Our bodies are constantly striving to find an acid/alkaline balance. When our bodies are too acidic they can easily fall into a disease state. For healing to occur, we need to bring our bodies into an alkaline state. People have cured themselves of cancer in part by eating a nutrient-dense alkaline diet. The same principle can be used to heal from a cold or flu and bone broth is packed full of alkaline power to help the body find the balance it needs to heal.
Bone broth turns regular soups into healing gold.
When you give your child chicken noodle soup made from bone broth, you turn an already yummy soup into a healing liquid gold. Your child will never know they are eating the best medicine nature makes.
Now that you know the healing power of homemade bone broth, will you be adding it to your first aid kit?
- 4 organic carrots unpeeled, cut into halves or thirds
- 2 organic onions unpeeled, cut in quarters
- 4-5 organic celery stalks cut into halves or thirds
- 4-5 organic red or yukon potatoes cut into quarters
- 2 organic sweet potatoes or yams quartered
- 6-10 cloves garlic unpeeled, cut in half
- 1 organic chicken carcass or the equivalent in chicken bones
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice or raw apple cider vinegar (this is needed to pull minerals from chicken bones)
- ½ cup fresh rosemary
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 piece kombu
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
Wash all vegetables, but leave their skins on. In a large stock pot (12 quarts or more) place all ingredients and then fill the pot with filtered water until the vegetables are covered in water. You want a few inches between the vegetables and the rim of the pot so it doesn't boil over.
Bring pot to a boil and then simmer for 2-8 hours. The longer you simmer, the better. Not only will the flavor taste better, but also the broth will contain more minerals the longer is simmers. Skim the fat off the top as you simmer with a paper towel. Add water when your vegetables start to peak through.
When you have simmered long enough, strain broth through a fine mesh colander or strainer into a heat proof container (we use glass). Allow to cool to room temperature before storing in fridge or freezer. Skim more fat off the top as it cools (if making a chicken broth). I keep several containers in our freezer so I can make soup at any time!
Note: If I am in a hurry and don’t have all the above ingredients a basic stock can be made with chicken bones, vinegar/lemon, onion, carrots and celery. The rosemary adds nice flavor and the kombu is important for trace minerals. Also it is best to use organic vegetables but if you don't have organic vegetables wash and peel conventional produce.