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Top 10 Benefits of Beef Bone Broth

By Liam McAuliffe Published on

Bone broth is one of the oldest foods on earth, and its staying power is a testament to its many benefits. 

Bone broths are a staple in nearly every traditional diet, and many cultures view bone broths as both delicious and curative. 

Though bone broth can be made from the bones of any animal, beef bone broth is one of the most popular varieties being resurrected in our modern world. 

In this article, we’ll explore how modern science aligns with ancient wisdom as we look at the benefits of beef bone broth. 

Table of Contents

What is Beef Bone Broth? 

Beef bone broth is made by boiling down beef bones and connective tissue. 

The result is a nutrient-dense liquid used as the base for soups or consumed without any other ingredients. 

What Nutrients are in Beef Bone Broth? 

When boiled, beef bones release some of their trace minerals, including calcium, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus. 1

The bone marrow contains vitamin A, vitamin K2, abundant proteins, and healthy fats. 7  8

The connective tissues and cartilage on the bones provide glucosamine and chondroitin that support joint health. 5 6

But the greatest benefits of beef bone broth come from the collagen that when stewed, breaks down into various beneficial compounds known as peptides. 9 10

Now let’s explore what kind of benefits you can expect from these beef bone broth nutrients. 

1. Anti-Inflammatory Properties

Considering that worldwide 3 out of 5 people die from chronic inflammatory diseases, including stroke, respiratory diseases, heart disorders, cancer, obesity, and diabetes, reducing inflammation is a top dietary priority. 2

It’s also important to highlight that all of these diseases are rooted in a modern diet and lifestyle

Adopting ancestral foods central to traditional cultures that don’t get these diseases is a wise step in the right direction. 4 

Glycine and arginine, two of the amino acids found in abundance in beef bone broth, have powerful anti-inflammatory properties.16 17

A 2015 study on asthmatic mice revealed that consuming arginine reduced inflammation in their airways and their symptoms abated. 2 

Another animal study from 2016 found that  arginine reduced inflammation in obese rats.

A 2019 study found that arginine possessed such potent anti-inflammatory properties that it may be used as an anti-inflammatory for inflammatory bowel disease and diarrhea.4

Other studies on both animals and humans with intestinal diseases have found that L-arginine decreases intestinal injury, reduces oxidative stress and inflammation, and restores the mucosal lining. 3 4 5

2. Supports Digestive Health

If you make a homemade bone broth and it firms and gets jiggly, then it’s high in gelatin. 2 

This ability of gelatin to hold onto water allows it to bind to water in your digestive system, helping move food through your GI tract.

Studies show that gelatin protects the mucosal lining of the gut, mainly due to the presence of anti-inflammatory glycine–a component of gelatin.4

Glycine has also been shown to protect against gastric ulcers while helping to digest fat.2

Glutamine is another amino acid in beef bone broth that fuels both immune and intestinal cells in the gut. Glutamine has also been shown to help maintain the health of your gut lining and protect against intestinal permeability. 5 6 2 3

3. Supports Better Sleep

Collagen provides more glycine than any other food component. 2 tablespoons of collagen yields 3 grams of glycine. 2

Numerous studies show that glycine helps promote healthy sleep. 1 2 3

In a 2016 study, a group of subjects took glycine before bed while another group took a placebo. 

The group that was given glycine reached slow-wave sleep more quickly, improving their quality of sleep by stabilizing sleep rhythms. 3

diagram of effects of glycine in beef bone broth on sleep quality

4. Protection Against Cancer

Beef bone broth is one of the richest sources of glycine, an amino acid that has been shown to reduce homocysteine levels after protein-rich meals.6

High homosysteine levels have been linked to cancer. 

5. Protection Against Neurological Disorders

Studies show that glycine positively impacts neurological disorders like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. 2 3

6. Antioxidant Properties

Glycine has been shown to restore levels of the antioxidant, glutathione.6

Known as the “master antioxidant,” glutathione provides protection to nearly every cell in your body.  3

7. Antidepressant Properties

Glycine is a precursor to creatine, a compound that acts as a powerful antidepressant and enhances athletic performance and recovery. 5 

Since anxiety and depression are associated with inflammation and gut disorders, the ability of beef bone broth to reduce inflammation and help heal the gut contributes to stable mood and mental health. 4 5

8. Immunity Boost

17% of the amino acids in collagen are proline. Studies show that proline is an important factor in wound healing, and healthy immune response. 2 3

9. Joint and Skin Health

Broth from beef bones with the tendons and cartilage still attached provides complex carbohydrates called glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). 

These compounds can attach to proteins to create connective tissue and the lubricant that surrounds joints.(11)  

They’re also the raw materials required for the maintenance and health of skin, cartilage, and bone. 2

Studies have found that the glycosaminoglycan called chondroitin reduces joint pain and decreases symptoms of osteoarthritis. 3 2 1

10. Supports Weight Loss and Body Composition

Studies have found that regularly consuming soup can increase feelings of fullness and can lead to decreased body weight and belly fat. 26 27 28

As a high-protein food, bone broth helps control appetite and maintain lean body mass.29 30

A study of 53 men found that combining collagen intake with resistance training helps increase muscle mass and decrease body fat. 31

Beef Bone Broth Recipe

Bone Broth Bouillon in Metal Pan. Organic Food.

This homemade beef bone broth recipe is extremely easy to make. 

If you’re looking for a pure carnivore bone broth, you can simply eliminate the acid and veggies. 

Ingredients

  • 12 pounds beef bones
  • 1/2 cup raw apple cider vinegar (optional)
  • Lots of salt to taste
  • Optional, onion, carrot, herbs to taste

Directions

  • Step1:(optional)  Preheat oven to 450 °F (232°C). Arrange bones in a single layer on a large roasting tray, roast for 20 minutes. Not necessary but can add flavor.
  • Step 2: Place bones in large stock pot and fill with water so all bones are covered.
  • Step 3 (optional): Add vinegar.
  • Step 4: Simmer on low for 18 hours-72 hours. The longer the better. Make sure bones remain covered with water. Add more when necessary.

Beef Bone Broth Benefits: The Takeaway

Beef bone broth provides numerous amino acids associated with a variety of powerful health benefits. 

These benefits include: 

  • Reduced inflammation
  • Digestive health
  • Better sleep
  • Anti-cancer effects
  • Antidepressant properties
  • Supports immune response
  • Health joints and skin
  • Weight loss and body composition