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The Buzz: Bone Broth

Beef broth in custard cup with fresh root vegetables

What’s the buzz? Bone broth fans claim this savory elixir is a cure-all “superfood.” But what does the science say?

Bone broth is made by roasting bones (usually chicken, beef, or fish) then simmering them, sometimes with the meat attached, along with vegetables (typically carrots, celery, and onion) and herbs and spices for 24 hours before straining it. Bone broth differs from most traditional culinary stocks because it’s simmered for a much longer time in order maximize the extraction of minerals from the bones. Proponents make bone broth sound like a miracle in a bowl, claiming benefits ranging from healing the gut and protecting joints to supporting the immune system, strengthening bones, increasing energy, and making those who drink it look younger. However, these claims are not well supported by research. Bone broth does contain important minerals such as calcium and magnesium, but these are not unique to this food and nutritional values vary.

What’s the takeaway?

Sipping on bone broth can be soothing, and you may reap some health benefits from the immune-boosting nutrients provided by the broth. However, be wary of some of the grandiose claims surrounding a liquid that isn’t that different from a cup of chicken soup.

Read more about bone broth here.