Makes 6+ Servings
- 4 pounds organic beef bones (marrow and knuckle bones)
- 3 medium unpeeled carrots, coarsely chopped
- 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
- 3-4 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
- 3 bay leaves
- 2 tbsp black peppercorns
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar (ACV)
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- A dash of Himalayan sea salt when serving
- water (natural spring water is best; or filtered water)
- 6-qt. (or larger) slow cooker (crock pot)
Preheat a skillet, with a tbsp of coconut oil. Add carrots, onion and celery to skillet. Saute until golden brown. Add a tiny amount of hot water if vegetables become too dry.
Add the beef bones, bay leaves, peppercorns, and ACV to the slow cooker. The ACV is an essential ingredient to draw out the minerals from the bones. Once vegetables are golden brown, add them to the slow cooker. Fill slow cooker to the top with natural spring water. Cover and turn on medium heat for 12 hours. Decrease to low heat for the remainder of the time. Total cook time is 48 hours. Add more water to slow cooker as needed as the liquid becomes concentrated, making sure all contents are submerged.
Once bone broth is complete, let it cool. Strain bone broth with a fine-mesh sieve, and discard (or compost) bones and vegetables. Use wide mouth glass mason jars to bottle and store the bone broth. Let jars sit out to cool down until you hear them seal. Once sealed, place all jars in refrigerator.
When ready to use your bone broth, discard or save the top layer of solidified fat for cooking. Heat broth on low heat, add a pinch of Himalayan sea salt for taste and enjoy.
Freeze in ice-cube trays if needed.
Photo and Recipe Credit: Epicurious Beef Bone Broth.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT. . .
BONE BROTH, THE LIQUID MIRACLE
Glycine. A nonessential amino acid (body is capable of creating it by itself), glycine is involved in the formation of creatine (beneficial for athletes), glutathione (the mother of all antioxidants), and heme (and iron-containing and oxygen-carrying component of blood).
Collagen. The most abundant protein in the body and the main building block of connective tissue, including tendons and ligaments. Proline and glycine comprise of half the amino-acid composition of collagen. With age, collagen breaks down and leads to decreased stability, weaker and less elastic joints, thinner cartilage and less resilient skin. The bones in your bone broth are rich in collagen. Upon cooking, collagen breaks down into gelatin, which supports gut healing. Collagen and gelatin give your body the raw materials to rebuild its own connective tissue.
Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). These include hyaluronic acid, glucosamine, and chondroitin sulfate. These are commonly used for treating osteoarthritis.
Other key players found in bone broth include glutamine (supports immune health and integrity of the intestinal walls), calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulfur and trace minerals.
Bone broth helps to heal and seal your gut. Medical scientists have discovered that your health is in large part dependent on the health of your intestinal tract. The health of your gut and brain are also largely connected and intertwined. Leaky gut is the root of many health problems, especially allergies, autoimmune disorders, and many neurological disorders. The collagen found in bone broth acts like a soothing balm to heal and seal your gut lining, and broth is a foundational component of the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) diet, developed by Russian neurologist Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride.
Make sure your bones are organic, grass fed, free-range, and come from a good farm. Animals that are fed an unnatural diet that is not beneficial for their intestinal makeup, and are given a variety of drugs and growth promoters are not beneficial to your health.
BENEFITS OF BONE BROTH INCLUDE:
- Promotes strong, healthy bones
- Reduces joint pain and inflammation
- Fights inflammation
- Healthy hair and nails
- Heals and seals the gut
- Promotes healthy digestion
- Inhibits viruses and infection
- Reduces swelling
- Calms the nerves
- Reduces recovery time
- Removes arterial plaque build-up
- Improves autoimmune diseases
You will find many articles out there from common sites that insist there is not enough scientific evidence supporting the benefits of bone broth. Our favorite Bone Broth article is Why Broth is Beautiful by the Weston A. Price Foundation and it’s definitely worth a read. It’s best to give bone broth a good go- try it for a period of time, see how and if it benefits you, and come up with your own conclusion.
RECIPE: BONE BROTH
- 2 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed, halved, outer leaves removed (6 cups prepped)
- 2 tablespoons organic avocado oil (or coconut oil)
- 1 tablespoon organic olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dry Harissa spice blend (paprika, caraway, chili pepper, cayenne pepper, coriander, cumin, garlic, peppermint, sea salt)
- 3/4 teaspoon fine himalayan sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 400F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. With a paring or ceramic knife, trim off the ends of the sprouts and slice in half lengthwise. Remove any loose outer leaves. Place the prepped sprouts into a large bowl. Add the avocado oil onto the sprouts in the bowl and stir or toss with hands until thoroughly coated. Add the Harissa spice and salt. Stir until combined. Spread the Brussels sprouts onto the prepared baking sheet in a uniform layer. Garnish with freshly ground black pepper. Roast the sprouts for 20 minutes, flip with spatula, and continue roasting for another 5-15 minutes until browned to your liking. If you prefer very crisp sprouts, you can “overcook” these until very brown, but not blackened. Smaller sprouts will brown faster than larger ones. Drizzle with olive oil and quickly toss to coat. This infuses with flavor and moistens them a bit after roasting. Sprinkle on toasted sesame seeds if you have some on hand. Taste and add another tiny pinch of salt, if desired, and serve immediately – the hotter the better.
Seasoning and Dipping Alternatives for Crispy Sprouts
- Drizzle with pomegranate molasses or balsamic reduction with pomegranate arils (very festive!) – you can skip the Harissa seasoning here.
- Garlic infused – try minced garlic cloves, garlic-infused oil, garlic salt
- Organic Teriyaki sauce – pairs well with sesame seeds
- Organic Barbecue sauce (sprinkled on or used for dipping)
- Coconut curry sauce or your favorite curry powder
- Sriracha or other hot sauce
- Roasted Red Pepper Hummus (or flavor of your choice)
- Ground toasted nuts or seeds like pecans or sesame seeds.
Recipe Adapted from: Oh! She Glows.
SILICA, THE BEST KEPT SECRET
We are born with an abundance of silica, which is why babies have such beautifully smooth and glowing skin. As we age our silica levels decrease, revealing the telltale signs of aging such as dry wrinkled skin, bone loss, weakened gums and teeth, thinning or loss of hair, and brittle nails to name a few. We must supplement silica from our environment around us. Without silica, our bodies would literally break apart!
Silicon maintains healthy hair, skin, and nails. It sits inside collagen, acting as glue, providing strength, flexibility and resilience to collagen and elastic connective tissues. Silica is a natural anti-inflammatory that soothes and calms skin irritations and helps to alleviate eczema and psoriasis. Silica contributes to skin’s youthful glow, brightness, firmness, smoothness, thickness, elasticity, strength, and hydration. It reduces skin’s facial pores, blemishes, and wrinkles while increasing elasticity and firmness of blood vessels. This improves the delivery of oxygen and essential nutrients to your skin cells.
It’s no wonder the symptoms of aging are linked with the degradation of silica production. As we age there are many ways to increase the amount of silica we absorb through the body, both internally and externally.
While in London, UK, Dr. Isabel Sharkar collaborated with SÖND skin care as their resident naturopathic expert on silica. If you are interested in silica skin care products that are good for psoriasis, eczema and other sensitive skin issues, check out their website.
GINKGO GETS YOUR MIND IN GEAR (Ginkgo biloba)
Hundreds of published studies have evaluated the effectiveness of Ginkgo in people with dementia and other types of cognitive decline. Several studies show that GBE has a positive effect on memory, learning, and thinking in people with Alzheimer disease or vascular dementia. In fact, Ginkgo may work as well as some prescription medications for Alzheimer’s.
Gingko extracts are standardized to specific dosages when used in studies and medical treatment. GBE can interact with blood clotting medications. Be sure to consult with your holistic practitioner before taking Ginkgo.
NF uses video, music, games, and/or specific tasks (like writing your name) to help train the brain to form new neural connections. A specially trained clinician monitors the EEG to assess how a person is responding. Once a pattern is established, regular NF sessions help reinforce the pattern. Over time, this results in new learning that can endure for years or a lifetime.
There’s good evidence that NF can help prevent cognitive decline in the normal aging process. Healthy older adults have shown improvements in working memory after a short, intensive series of NF sessions. New research is looking at whether or not NF improves symptoms associated with dementia disorders. In fact, a study with older adults with Alzheimer’s disease, NF brought about improvement in recall of information and recognition.
In many states, health agencies regulate the practice of NF practitioners who treat medical conditions. If you’re interested in learning more about NF, ask your physician for resources or check for a practitioner listed with your state association of neurofeedback practitioners.
Last year one of our dear friends experienced neurofeedback first hand by visiting the Biocybernaut Institute for a seven-day training workshop. Research has shown that Biocybernaut Alpha Feedback training increased intelligence as measured by a sophisticated IQ test: up to 49 percentiles in one individual and 11 points average in a study reported in February 2000. Men and women suffering the effects of brain aging, memory loss, ADD and ADHD, depression, panic and anxiety disorders, addictions, and even stroke can transform their lives.
BRAIN FITNESS REFERENCES
- The Dana Foundation: Gateway to Responsible Information about the Brain. “What is ‘Healthy’ Cognitive Aging?” Posted 15 Oct 2013. Accessed 8 Nov 2016.
- National Institute of Aging Online. “Memory & Cognitive Health.” Accessed 8 Nov 2016. Also see Brain Health Presentations and Handouts.
- Smith G.E., “Healthy Cognitive Function and Dementia Prevention.” Am Psychol. (2016, May-June). 71:4, 268-275. Accessed 8 Nov 2016.
- Alz.org. “10 Early Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s.” Accessed 8 Nov 2016.
- Lautenschlager, N.T., Cox, K, Cyarto, E.V. “The Influence of Exercise on Brain Aging and Dementia.” In Special Edition: Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) – Molecular Basis of Disease: Imaging Brain Aging and Neurodegenerative Disease (2012, Mar) 1822:3, 474-481. Accessed 8 Nov 2016.
- Kirk-Sanchez NJ, et al. “Physical Exercise and Cognitive Performance In the Elderly: Current Perspectives.”Clin Interv Aging (2014) Accessed 8 Nov 2016.
- Alzheimer’s Association. The Healthy Brain Initiative: A National Public Health Road Map to Maintaining Cognitive Health. (Published with the CDC). Accessed 8 Nov 2016.
- Healthy Aging and Prevention: Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at Emory University.
BONE BROTH REFERENCES
- Photo Credit: The Box, The Healing Power of Bone Broth. Accessed 3 January 2017.
- Mercola. Bone Broth- One Of Your Most Healing Diet Staples. Accessed 3 January 2017.
- Mercola. Bone Broth- A Most Nourishing Food for Virtually Any Ailment. Accessed 3 January 2017.
- Dr. Axe. Bone Broth Benefits for Digestion, Arthritis and Cellulite. Accessed 3 January 2017.
- Weston A. Price Foundation. Why Broth is Beautiful: Essential Roles for Proline, Glycine and Gelatin.Accessed 3 January 2017.
- Indigo Integrative Health Clinic. Silica, Our Little Secret. Accessed on January 3, 2017.
- Braun, L., & Cohen, M. Herbs and Natural Supplements: An Evidence-Based Guide (4th Ed., Vol 2). “Ginkgo Biloba” (2015). Elsevier Health Sciences. (pages referenced 415-424). Accessed 7 Nov 2016 via Google Books.
- Amieva H., Meillon C., Helmer C, et al., “Ginkgo biloba Extract and Long-term Cognitive Decline: A 20-Year Follow-Up Population-Based Study.” PLoS One. (2013) 8:1, 527-555.
- American Botanical Council Online. “Meta-analysis shows Ginkgo to be Effective for Mild Dementia.”Accessed 7 Nov 2016.
- University of Maryland Complementary and Alternative Medicine Database Online. “Ginkgo biloba.”Accessed 7 Nov 2016.
- Johnson, R.L., S. Foster, Low Dog, T. and Kiefer, D. National Geographic Guide to Medicinal Herbs: The World’s Most Effective Healing Plants. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic, 2012. pp 114-117.
- Hosseini, S.M., Pritchard-Berman, M. et al., “Task-based neurofeedback training: A novel approach toward training executive functions.” Neuroimage. (2016 Jul) 1:134, 153-9. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2016.03.035. Accessed 9 Nov 2016.
- Luimes, R.E., et al., “The Effectiveness of Neurofeedback On Cognitive Functioning in Patients with Alzheimer’s Disease: Preliminary Results.” Neurophysiol Clin. (2016 Jun) 46(3):179-87. doi: 10.1016/j.neucli.2016.05.069. Accessed 9 Nov 2016.
- Albert, A. O., Andrasik, F., Moore, J. L., & Dunn, B. R. “Theta/Beta Training for Attention, Concentration and Memory Improvement in the Geriatric Population.” Applied Psychophysiology & Biofeedback, (1998) 23(2), 109. Annotated Bibliography via.
- Reis, Joana et al. “An Alpha and Theta Intensive and Short Neurofeedback Protocol for Healthy Aging Working-Memory Training.” Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience 8 (2016): 157. PMC. Web.
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