Why You Should be Hooked on Bone Broth — Interview with Alyssa Regan
Alyssa Regan, Integrative Nutritionist and owner of Dare to Eat Bravely, is back for her second class with us! This time, she’ll be teaching our January Bone Broth Workshop: Unlocking the Healing Potential of Food at Temenos Retreat Center in West Chester, PA. In this interview, we're sharing a few Q&As relating to her thoughts and experiences on the healing benefits of bone broth!
Q: What drew you to learning about bone broth?
A: I began my healing journey about 8 years ago. I developed anaphylactic food allergies as an adult. I also have had menstrual health issues my whole life that went undiagnosed until recently (endometriosis). Both of these conditions cause, and are subject to, high levels of inflammation in the body. In terms of my health issues, I do not believe we are innately born to be allergic to food or have a plethora of the endocrine disorders that are becoming more and more prevalent. Whether it be environmental, pesticides, inflammation, or whatever your belief, I believe all healing starts within the gut. I believe if the gut is compromised and not functioning properly, it is extremely hard for the rest of our bodies to thrive. I do not believe that one food will cure or heal all but I believe food — whole, unprocessed food, is a great place to start. For me I was drawn to bone broth for the soothing, nourishing, hydrating qualities. When I thought of broth and stock, I thought of when I was a child and would get sick. My mom or Grandmother would make homemade chicken noodle soup. If broth is the thing you go to when you have a cold or virus to nourish you, I thought it must be good when other ailments are occurring. I began to do my research and experiment. What I learned was quite a bit about the amino acid profile of bone broth and gelatin and how that can have a great impact on gut health. I was hooked and began to regularly incorporate broth into my diet as part of a nourishing healing protocol (for both body and spirit).
Q: Why do you make your own bone broth instead of buying it at the store?
A: Honestly, the cost of store bought bone broth made me realize that I need to learn to make it for myself if it is going to be an ongoing part of my diet. For those brands that are grass-fed and slow cooked, I applaud them. They mostly taste delicious and they do a great job. I still use them in a pinch when my freezer stock is out. They genuinely can be expensive because broth making is a time consuming task. I realized that I could make an abundance to freeze for a few months at a time by utilizing one weekend to make broth. Purchasing bones from local health food stores and farmers is way less expensive than buying ready-made broth and they can be used to produce a huge amount of broth. I also really try to live by the no waste rule. Bone broth is such a beautiful way to do that. If you’ve ever processed an animal and/or even roasted a whole chicken, all of the organs, carcass, feet, and sometimes heads can go right into the stock pot. There is no waste and that animal did not give its life in vain. It is a profound feeling to be able to utilize the entire being for nourishment.
Q: How will someone benefit from taking your bone broth workshop versus finding recipes online?
A: There are a ton of really great resources out there to learn how to make bone broth. I will share some of them during the workshop. My hope is that individuals who join this workshop will not only learn how to make broth but will also learn how to source grass fed bones and why this is so important. I will also be sharing some ways to add even more nutrients to a broth from herbs, and several ways to make broth — for sipping, for clear soup, and as stock. Each way has a slightly different technique. I will be sharing tips on how to store broth and ideas on how to incorporate it into daily meals and tonics. Overall, I will be sharing some education on how broth can improve your digestive system and other body systems as well as ways to utilize the healing properties (and what those healing properties are). Lastly, more than anything, taking a workshop brings together a small community with a similar interest. It is always a beautiful thing to watch like-minded people come together and share their own stories and experiences.
Q: How has learning about the properties of herbs impacted the way you make bone broth?
A: Depending upon what is going on in my life and my body, I add different herbs to my broths — sometimes for flavor, and sometimes for medicinal qualities. Some herbs are antiviral and antibacterial while others offer a plethora of micronutrients and minerals. Knowing that we add raw apple cider vinegar to a stock to help break down the minerals of the bones, this vinegar also helps extract the minerals from herbs, making them more bioavailable. Sometimes I do not add any herbs to my base pot of broth but will add some after, like a cup of tea. I will share this in detail during the workshop.
Q: What are the top 3 healing benefits you’ve experienced from bone broth?
A: First and foremost, I firmly believe that consuming bone broth played a huge role in reestablishing the integrity of my gut lining. The amino acids present from the gelatin play numerous roles in healing. My allergies are going away. My digestive issues are mostly gone. I do not believe broth alone did this but I believe is helped immensely.
Secondly, I had a major abdominal surgery this past summer to excise endometriosis. Broth played a crucial role in preparing my tissues for surgery and healing. The gelatin that is created is extremely nourishing for the connective tissue and fascia (among other things), and I am convinced it allowed an easier and quicker recovery time.
Lastly, gelatin is extremely high in glycine. While glycine is a non-essential amino acid and we do produce it on our own, your body will thank you when you lessen its burden by supplying it with some extra. Glycine helps our livers function optimally. Since we encounter a fair amount of toxins on the daily (add the allergies and endometriosis I have on top of that), having a properly functioning liver can really help reduce the burden of toxins on the body. I feel that my body thanks me for that extra support.
BONE BROTH WORKSHOP:
UNLOCKING THE HEALING POTENTIAL OF FOOD
7 - 9 PM
@ Temenos Retreat Center
(Snow Date: 2.7.19)
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