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Utilizing Bone Broth as Nourishment and Healing Elixir: The “Longevity Soup” Recipe

Are you on the quest for recipes that can elevate your overall health and well-being, particularly when it comes to nurturing your gut health? Are you grappling with issues like leaky gut syndrome or perhaps even managing autoimmune conditions? If so, you’re in for a treat. Allow us to introduce you to the incredible world of “longevity” bone broths—rich, nutritious, and organic elixirs that deserve a special place in your culinary repertoire. (Wink, wink to our vegetarian friends; we’ve got something special for you too!)

Now, we understand that some may raise an eyebrow when it comes to vegetarian alternatives for bone broth, as traditional gelatin substitutes don’t quite match up. However, fear not, as we’ll unveil a mineral and vitamin-rich vegetarian broth that can work wonders for your bones, connective tissues, and even collagen production. Stay tuned for this revelation! Surprisingly, even some vegetarians are willing to embrace bone broth, as, ethically speaking, these bones would otherwise go to waste. After all, bone broths offer a plethora of benefits that are too good to ignore. (Pitchford, P 2002, “Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition,” 3rd edition, North Atlantic Books, Berkeley)

When it comes to addressing autoimmune conditions, nurturing the gut lining and restoring organ tissues often take precedence in the healing process. Bone broths emerge as powerful allies in this journey, aiding in the healing and rejuvenation of the intestinal lining while bolstering overall health.

As a qualified naturopath, I’ve learned that treating my clients with natural herbs and supplements is just a small piece of the puzzle. The key lies in educating them on adopting a healthy lifestyle, dietary choices, creating a nurturing home environment, and cultivating healthy habits. In the realm of health maintenance, education reigns supreme. Just as there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to health, there’s no magic pill either.

Allow me to share a personal story: during my childhood, I battled digestive issues, asthma, and recurrent respiratory infections. Interestingly, my body consistently craved meat and vegetable broths. My mother fondly recalls how all I wanted during meal times was soups and broth. It’s a testament to the body’s innate wisdom in recognizing the healing and regenerative properties of broths.

Bone broths, typically derived from chicken, beef, or fish, have a time-honored reputation as a staple “food as medicine” for the young, ailing, and frail. These nourishing broths have sustained humanity throughout the ages, serving as a traditional remedy for colds, flu, and a wide array of ailments associated with connective tissues—be it in the gastrointestinal tract, joints, skin, lungs, muscles, or blood. They go by various names worldwide: seolleongtang in Korea, sopa de lima in the Yucatán, and the renowned “Jewish penicillin,” also known as chicken soup, to name a few.

In China, bone broth stands as a well-established, common, and effective form of medicine, renowned for promoting growth and development. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) champions the healing virtues of bone broth, classifying it as a tonic herb (Pitchford, P 2002). Tonics, in the realm of TCM, nourish the body, fortify weaknesses, replenish deficiencies, and enhance the body’s defense mechanisms, bolstering resistance to disease while nourishing the blood.

Bone Broths Offer Relief for a Spectrum of Ailments, Including:

• Arthritis

• Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis)

• Cancer • Decreased immune system

• Malnutrition (Pitchford 2002)

The Health Benefits and Therapeutic Potency of Bone Broth Bone broth earns its acclaim thanks to its substantial gelatin content, amino acid profile, and a treasure trove of valuable vitamins and minerals, all provided in a highly absorbable form for the body. This means that the body expends minimal energy in assimilating and utilizing these nutrients, making bone broth exceptionally beneficial for the frail, those in recovery, or the elderly.

The Nutritional Bounty of Bone Broth Includes:

• Calcium

• Phosphorus

• Magnesium

• Fluoride

• Sodium and potassium

• Silicon

• Sulfur chondroitin

• Glucosamine

• A host of other trace minerals

The optimal way to acquire these nutrients is through natural foods. You can certainly source these minerals and vitamins separately, amassing a collection of supplements in your first aid cabinet. Alternatively, you can nourish your body with a diet rich in vitamins and minerals, reducing your reliance on herbs, supplements, or pharmaceuticals.

In our fast-paced modern society, nutritional supplements have gained widespread popularity. Each individual vitamin and mineral has been extracted, bottled, and packaged for our convenience. Dehydrated bone broth, powdered or liquid gelatin, encapsulated bone cartilage, and various tablets and powders designed to support joint and gut health have flooded the market. While they offer some therapeutic benefits, they can’t quite replicate the wholesome goodness of a homemade, hearty bone broth straight from the pot involving all 5 body senses. The intricate interplay of ingredients during the cooking process is irreplaceable through supplements.

The beauty of making your own bone broth lies in its simplicity. You may hesitate at first, but once you’ve tried, you’ll eagerly anticipate the next opportunity to create this nutritious elixir for yourself.

Bones, bone marrow, and joints (cartilage) are packed with easily absorbed vitamins and minerals. These connective tissues from animal off-cuts are infused into the broth during a lengthy and slow cooking process. This is precisely why bone broth shines as a medicine of choice for treating connective tissue diseases, such as arthritis—a condition familiar to many.

Bone broth boasts a high collagen (gelatin) content, delivering essential building blocks for repairing connective tissue and healing the gastrointestinal lining.

The Nutritional Spectrum of Bone Broth Encompasses:

• Collagen

• Mineral salts: calcium and phosphorus (in the form of hydroxyapatite)

• Calcium carbonate

• Magnesium

• Sodium

• Potassium

• Sulfate

• Fluoride

• Elastin

• Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs)

• Chondroitin sulfate

• Keratin sulfate

• Hyaluronic acid

• Antiangiogenetic factors (AAFs), combatting cancer cell growth by suppressing blood vessels, thereby impeding the rapid proliferation of cancer cells (Tortora 1996) (Quillin 2001).

This potent blend supports the formation of blood cells—red, white, and platelets—and contributes to the healing of connective tissues. It also provides solace and reconstruction for the gastrointestinal lining, enhancing immunity, particularly B, T, and macrophage cells when the immune system calls for stimulation. Remarkably, one of the most common forms of immune suppression globally is linked to malnutrition, specifically a deficiency in protein (Murry & Pizzorno 1991).

This connection becomes clear when we consider that the immune system primarily consists of proteins—antibodies, receptors, and chemical signalers. Additionally, approximately 80% of the immune system takes up residence in the lining of the gastrointestinal tract.

Why Should You Make Your Own Bone Broth?

While you may find various forms of bone broths available in pharmacies and health food stores, the quality can vary greatly, often coming at a hefty price tag. Why pay a premium when you can easily extract the goodness of cartilage from bones in the comfort of your own kitchen? When you purchase the bones yourself, you have control over the source, ensuring that fresh, organic bones of the highest quality are used, as opposed to dried pre-packaged bone broth. And the best part? Making your own bone broth is incredibly cost-effective. Organic bones from the market, for instance, can cost as little as $5-7 per kilogram!

If you happen to fall into any of the following categories, you could significantly benefit from consuming organic bone broth:

• Aging • Allergies • Anemia • Anxiety • Asthma • Atherosclerosis • Attention deficit disorder • Brittle nails • Coeliac Disease • Colic • Confusion • Constipation • Delusions • Dental problems • Depression • Detoxification • Diabetes • Diarrhea • Fatigue • Food sensitivities and maldigestion (beans, carbohydrates, dairy, and meat) • Fractures • Gastritis • Grain maldigestion • Heart attack • High cholesterol • Hyperactivity • Hyperchlorhydria (reflux, ulcer) • Hyper-parathyroidism (primary) • Hypertension • Hypochlorhydria • Hypoglycemia • Immunodepression • Increased urination • Infectious disease • Inflammation • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis) • Insomnia • Intestinal bacterial infections • Irritability • Irritable Bowel Syndrome • Jaundice • Joint injury • Kidney stones • Leaky gut • Loss of appetite • Memory • Muscle cramps • Muscle spasms • Muscle wasting • Muscle weakness • Muscular Dystrophy • Nausea • Nervousness • Osteoarthritis • Osteomalacia • Osteoporosis • Pain • Palpitations • Periodontal Disease • Pregnancy • Rapid growth • Restlessness • Rheumatoid Arthritis • Rickets • Seizure • Shallow breathing • Stupor • Virility • Vomiting • Weakness • Weight loss due to illness • Wound healing

Important Tips to Keep in Mind Before You Start Cooking:

  1. Select the Right Bones: When purchasing bones for your broth, opt for broken or cut-up bones. This exposes the marrow, allowing it to leach out during cooking, enriching your broth.
  2. Choose Organic Sources: Be mindful of where you source your ingredients, especially the bones. It’s essential to ask for organic bones to ensure the cleanest and purest broth. Beware of potential lead accumulation in bones and marrow; therefore, ensure that the animals were raised away from auto exhaust fumes and free from soil contamination.
  3. Include Slightly Acidic Vegetables: Vegetables such as carrots, celery, squash, and beets with a hint of acidity can help extract nutrients and minerals from the bones and bone marrow.
  4. Acidity is Key: The use of apple cider vinegar or lemon is crucial to aid in leaching nutrients from the bones into your broth. This acidity is essential for the process. It’s interesting to note that an excessively acidic diet or excessive consumption of acidic beverages can have detrimental effects on your health, as it accelerates the leaching of vitamins and minerals from your body to maintain blood homeostasis, especially your bones.
  5. Consider Joint Areas: When buying fresh organic bones, consider joint areas like chicken feet and beef knuckles, trachea, and ribs. For the highest anatomical concentration of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), also consider hooves and skin. While these parts form the starting material for bone broth, some individuals may have reservations about using them.
  6. Adjust for Pot Size: As you become more familiar with the recipe and cooking process, you can adjust it according to your pot size.
  7. Avoid Overcooking: As your broth simmers, there will be evaporation. Avoid cooking bone broth for more than 12 hours if you’re using a pot that’s less than 4 liters in size.

Bone Broth “Longevity” Soup Recipe:


  • A 6-10L pot or slow cooker
  • Grater
  • Colander
  • Chopping board
  • Baking dish (only if roasting your bones)

Ingredients (All Organic):

  • 1 kg of beef bones
  • 4 large carrots
  • 4 stalks of celery
  • 1 large parsnip
  • 1 swede
  • 3 brown onions
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 6-8 liters of water


  1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Place the bones on a roasting dish and roast them for 15-20 minutes. While this step is optional, it imparts a richer flavor to your broth.
  2. Wash and prepare your vegetables. Leaving the skins on adds extra nutritional value. You can grate the vegetables for added flavor and texture.
  3. Once the bones are slightly roasted, transfer them, along with all the juices and marrow, into your large pot. Cover the bones with approximately 6-8 liters of water (you can add more if your pot allows). Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, and cover with a lid. During the first hour, skim off any “scum,” which is the grey, frothy collection on the surface of your broth.
  4. Add your prepared vegetables, apple cider vinegar, bay leaves, and peppercorns. While some recipes call for boiling the bones on their own with the vinegar for a few hours before adding the root vegetables, this recipe combines everything from the start. Boiling them together makes skimming the frothy scum easier.
  5. Once again, bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover, and let it cook for 24-48 hours. During this time, occasionally remove some bones and extract the soft marrow from the center to ensure you get all the goodness.
  6. After your desired cooking time, turn off the stove and let the broth cool slightly before straining it, separating the liquid from the vegetables. You can eat the flavorful vegetables separately, or even your pets might enjoy them as a treat.
  7. Once the broth has completely cooled, you’ll notice a layer of fat on top. Remove and discard this layer.
  8. Now, your broth is ready to enjoy! Remember, moderation is key, and a cup a day is ample to reap the benefits.

Additional Tips:

Top up the broth: add a small amount of extra water in the first 12 hours, as it tends to cook down.

Additional Flavors and Therapeutic Herbs: You can enhance the flavour and health benefits of your bone broth by adding therapeutic herbs and spices during the last hours of cooking. Consider ingredients like turmeric and ginger for their anti-inflammatory properties, parsley for its iron content, nettle leaves for reducing pain and boosting iron levels, and lemongrass for added flavor and silica.

Simmer on the Lowest Heat: When simmering your bone broth, use the lowest heat setting on the smallest burner of your stove. This will help prevent excessive evaporation. Over 24 hours of cooking, you may lose a significant amount of broth to evaporation. Avoid diluting your broth too much, as it can reduce its nutritional value, and the flavor won’t be as rich compared to a longer simmer, such as 48 hours.

Airing Out Your House: While simmering bone broth for an extended period, consider leaving a window open to air out your house. The aroma of cooking broth can be quite pervasive, and some fresh air circulation can be refreshing.

Homemade bone broth is a nutritious, cost-effective, and delicious addition to your diet. Its rich nutrient profile and potential health benefits make it a valuable asset, particularly for individuals dealing with a wide range of health conditions. By making your own bone broth, you have control over the quality of the ingredients, ensuring that you’re getting the most wholesome and nourishing broth possible.

So, go ahead and give this “Longevity Soup” recipe a try. Once you experience the flavors and feel the potential health benefits, you’ll likely find yourself looking forward to making it again and again. Remember, when it comes to your health, investing in natural, nutrient-rich foods like bone broth can be a powerful choice.

For tailored dietary advice or to address your individual health concerns, let’s book in a 1-on-1 naturopathic consultation and get to the root cause of your symptoms and create a healthy home & lifestyle where your body and mind can thrive.


  • Murray, M., & Pizzorno, J. (1991). Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine. Prima Publishing.
  • Tortora, G., et al. (1996). Principles of Anatomy and Physiology. Harper Collins Press.
  • Quillin, P. (2001). Beating Cancer with Nutrition. Nutrition Times Press.
  • Pitchford, P. (2002). Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition, 3rd Edition. North Atlantic Books, Berkeley.
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