One thing that I don’t think we spend enough time talking about it is postpartum nutrition. We spend 9 months being told what we should eat and what we shouldn’t eat, and then when the baby comes, it’s like….. ok, well, just make sure you eat something.
Yes, something is better than nothing, and you will mostly eat a lot postpartum because postpartum hunger just hits differently than pregnancy hunger, especially if you’re breastfeeding. So if you want to get some nutrients in and want something that is going to be light and warm on the stomach, a nice bone broth is the perfect thing to consume postpartum.
What is bone broth?
Bone broth has been all the craze in the wellness industry thanks to our Paleo friends but its been around for centuries. Various cultures around the world have been making bone broth for thousands of years now. More than 2,500 years ago, in Chinese medicine, bone broth was used to strengthen the kidneys and support digestive health. In ancient Greece they used the bone broth for cleansing and digestion issues and in South America its was known as liquid gold that had a lot of healing properties.
The broth is made from animal bones and connective tissue — typically cattle, chicken, or fish — that have been boiled into a broth and slow simmered for 20+ hours with herbs, vegetables, and spices.
What are the benefits?
- Heal and seal your gut. The gelatin in the bone broth (found in the knuckles, feet, and other joints) helps seal up holes in intestines. This helps decrease symptoms and sometimes even cure chronic diarrhea, constipation, and even some types of food intolerances.
- Stronger bones. The phosphorus, magnesium, and calcium in the bones seeps out into the broth leaving you with the essential building blocks for healthy bones, this is great for postpartum recovery.
- Immune support. Mark Sisson, author of The Primal Blueprint, says that bone marrow can help strengthen your immune system.
- Sleep better, and feel better. The glycine in bone broth has been shown in several studies to help people sleep better and improve memory.
- Protect your joints. The chondroitin sulfate in bone broth has been shown to help prevent osteoarthritis
Bone broth is a powerhouse warm food because it’s rich in collagen, protein, vitamins, and minerals that support healthy brain function, combat fatigue, and support skin and joints as hormone levels balance out after childbirth. Amino acids, glycine, and proline help speed recovery after perineal tearing, episiotomy, or C-section.
How to make it?
Before we dive into those details just know that you don’t have to make it now a days. Many groceries now carry bone broth ready to eat and can be found near the soup aisle.
Here are few to check out
Chicken Bone Broth by Brodo– I haven’t had this one but I heard it was really good!
Now if you’re up it and want to make your own it’s actually quite simply. Here’s my favorite why what to make it.
Homemade Bone Broth
1 rotisserie chicken carcass or a Roasted chicken Carcass (I usually just save the bones from the chicken and freeze them in a bag until I’m ready to use them)
2 stalks of celery
1 head of garlic
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp. peppercorns
1 bay leaf
A handful of fresh herbs (I like rosemary, thyme and fennel)
kosher salt, to taste
- Place bones in the oven at 350 and roasted for 30 minutes. This is optional but I think you get more depth of flavor from the broth when the bones have been roasted.
- After roasting place the bones in a stockpot or large pot. Cut the onion and half and toss it in there, throw in the carrots and celery ( you can half them if they don’t fit) and the head of garlic. There is no need for chopping with this recipe, its just flavoring the broth, you’re straining it later.
- Fill with water until it just covers the carcass and the veggies. Add apple cider vinegar, bayleaf, fresh herbs, peppercorns, and kosher salt to taste.
- Bring water to a boil, reduce heat until it is simmering, cover and cook for 8-12 hours.
- Strain the broth and let cool before storing. If there is excess fat that collects at the top, skim off that fat.
- You can store in the fridge for 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- *For crockpot* Place all ingredients in a crockpot and cook on low for 10-12 hours.
- *For instant pot* Place all ingredients in and fill with water 2/3 full. Hit manual mode and cook on high pressure for 3 hours.
How to consume it
After you strain out all of the bones and veggies from cooking the bone broth, you wind up with the most fantastic flavored broth. You can use bone broth as a base for soups, but I especially love just sipping on it as an afternoon relaxation drink, and mainly at night before bedtime. It’s like drinking savory tea.