Bone broth is a liquid made by boiling animal bones, water, vegetables, and spices together.1 Because this broth is boiled for an extended length of time, it’s reported to be rich in nutrients that make it beneficial to human health.8
In the health community, bone broth has become popular for its healing properties, and has been to help address concerns like joint pain, intestinal issues, weight gain, and more.
Bone Broth Diet
While there are many ways to incorporate bone broth into your diet, one option to take advantage of its health benefits is to do a bone broth cleanse or fast.
Fasting is an ancient practice that began as early as the 5th century BC. Traditionally, a fast involves going without food or water for a period, and it may be done for health, religious, or ethical reasons.9 Some people may already be familiar with the Daniel Fast.
For those wondering how to do a bone broth fast, the steps are fairly simple. By reading through the following instructions, you’ll learn how to make your own broth diet plan. To increase your chances of completing the fast, it’s important to create a plan that you are comfortable with.
The first step is to set a time (often one to three days long) to do the fast. Avoid choosing a time when you’ll be tempted to break your fast early, such as food-centered holidays. You could also let friends and family know your plan so they can offer you support.
Next, begin making bone broth or buy your broth ahead of time so you will be prepared when your fast begins. You should also stock up on fruits and vegetables to eat during your fast.
If you’d like to know how much bone broth per day to consume, typically people start with approximately 12 cups or 3 quarts.
After preparing the broth, begin your fast on the chosen day. You should spend one to three days consuming bone broth, water, vegetables, and fruits.
During your fast, it’s important not to overexert yourself. Take time to rest, stay hydrated and avoid vigorous workouts.
Note: It’s recommended that you consult with your primary health physician before beginning any kind of fast.
Bone Broth Fast Results
There are many reported nutritional benefits of bone broth. While broth diet results will vary from person to person, some possible benefits include supporting weight loss, improving pre-diabetic conditions, and reducing joint pain. A bone broth fast may also aid in increasing bone health, promote intestinal health, and help detox skin.
Using bone broth for weight loss is becoming increasingly popular, and with good reason. A 2017 study followed subjects who fasted by limiting their calories for five days a month. After three months of following this pattern, participants who fasted lost approximately 6 pounds and 1-2 inches around their waistline.2
It’s also possible that doing a bone broth fast could improve the health of people who are pre-diabetic. The same study also observed the effect of fasting on patients with high blood sugar (indicating a pre-diabetic state).2
Those who began the fasting protocol with high blood sugar ended the program with blood sugar in the normal range, making them less at risk of developing diabetes.2
Helping to heal joint pain may be another benefit of a bone broth diet plan. A Penn State University study observed that when athletes took collagen (a component of bone broth) for 24 weeks, their joint pain was reported to decrease.3,4
Another one of the benefits of drinking bone broth during a fast may be promoting intestinal health. A 2012 study reported that gelatin (found in bone broth) may help promoting healing in damaged intestine.5 Because damaged or inflamed intestinal lining may lead to a leaky gut, some people believe that the gelatin found in bone broth may improve symptoms naturally.7
For those who suspect they may have leaky gut and are wondering how to heal leaky gut fast, many choose to do a bone broth fast, in addition to taking other detox supplements or diet plans.
Some people also use a bone broth diet to help improve the appearance of their skin by increasing their collagen intake. A study published in Skin Pharmacology and Physiology found that aging women who increased collagen levels for eight weeks had better skin elasticity (a factor in skin aging) than control groups.6
An additional reason some people may start broth fasting is to promote bone health. A 2010 study found that animal subjects with fractured bones healed faster when they were fed bone broth, compared to a control group.1 These findings are very promising, but further studies are needed to explore bone broth’s effect on human bones.
To receive the benefits listed above from bone broth fasting, it should not matter which kind of broth you choose to drink. For example, chicken broth diet results will likely be similar to the results of a beef broth fast.
Who Would Benefit from a Bone Broth Fast?
It’s possible that many people would benefit from doing a bone broth fast, though the effectiveness of a bone broth diet may vary depending on the individual.
Specifically, people with joint pain, difficulties losing weight, or aging skin, may benefit from doing a bone broth cleanse.
A broth fast may also be good for people with a leaky gut, fractured bones, or those who have a pre-diabetic condition.
Is a Broth Diet Safe?
A bone broth diet is likely safe for many people as long as it is done for a reasonable amount of time and if there are no underlying medical problems.
Though a bone broth fast may be safe for many people, pregnant women should not fast. Research has shown that fasting while pregnant can be harmful to an unborn child.10
If you are thinking of doing a bone broth detox and have a medical condition, are taking any medications, or are already underweight, talk to a healthcare professional before starting a bone broth detox plan.
Scientific Research Referenced in this Article
- Aljumaily, M. A. (2011). The Effect of Concentrated Bone Broth as a Dietary Supplementation on Bone Healing in Rabbits. Annals of the College of Medicine, 37(1&2), 42-47. Retrieved September 12, 2017, from http://medicinemosul.uomosul.edu.iq/files/pages/page_1988246.pdf#page=48
- Wei, M., Brandhorst, S., Shelehchi, M., Mirzaei, H., Cheng, C. W., Budniak, J., … Longo, V. D. (2017). Fasting-mimicking diet and markers/risk factors for aging, diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Science Translational Medicine, 9(377), eaai8700. doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.aai8700
- Clark, K., Sebastianelli, W., Flechsenhar, K., Aukermann, D., Meza, F., Millard, R., . . . Albert, A. (2008). 24-Week study on the use of collagen hydrolysate as a dietary supplement in athletes with activity-related joint pain. [Abstract]. Current Medical Research and Opinion, 24(5), 1485-1496. doi:10.1185/030079908X291967
- The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica. (2017, March 07). Gelatin. Retrieved September 12, 2017, from https://www.britannica.com/topic/gelatin
- Cardile, V. (2012). Gelatin tannate reduces the proinflammatory effects of lipopolysaccharide in human intestinal epithelial cells. Clinical and Experimental Gastroenterology, 5, 61-67. doi:10.2147/ceg.s28792
- Proksch, E., Segger, D., Degwert, J., Schunck, M., Zague, V., & Oesser, S. (2014). Oral Supplementation of Specific Collagen Peptides Has Beneficial Effects on Human Skin Physiology: A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study [Abstract]. Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 27(1), 47-55. doi:10.1159/000351376
- Mu, Q., Kirby, J., Reilly, C. M., & Luo, X. M. (2017). Leaky Gut As a Danger Signal for Autoimmune Diseases. Frontiers in Immunology, 8, 598. doi:10.3389/fimmu.2017.00598
- Rosen, H. N., Salemme, H., Zeind, A. J., Moses, A. C., Shapiro, A., & Greenspan, S. L. (1994). Chicken soup revisited: Calcium content of soup increases with duration of cooking [Abstract]. Calcified Tissue International, 54(6), 486-488. doi:10.1007/bf00334329
- The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica. (2015, October 02). Fasting. Retrieved September 14, 2017, from https://www.britannica.com/topic/fasting
- Almond, D., Mazumder, B., & Van Ewijk, R. (2011). Fasting During Pregnancy and Children’s Academic Performance. NBER Working Paper Series. Retrieved September 14, 2017, from http://www.nber.org/papers/w17713