The second we find out we’re pregnant we download all of the apps that tell…
When your body is healing from the marathon of birth, the temperature of your food matters. And while you might think that raw veggies and smoothies are “healthy” choices, they actually work against the healing process. Since these foods are cool, your body has to bring them up to your internal temperature before digesting them. And right now, your body needs that energy for healing, repair, and taking care of your baby.
Warm foods like soups, stews, and hearty rice bowls are what keep the healing fire and your body supported by nutrition.
In fact, it’s really important to keep your body warm as it heals in those first few weeks, especially. One of the best ways to support yourself with a big nutrition bang for your buck? Bone broth.
There are so many benefits to drinking bone broth and incorporating it into your cooking. I could go on about it, but will compose myself and share the highlights.
Bone broth’s balance of sodium to water content is a great way to hydrate efficiently. The addition of sodium (within reasonable amounts) helps your body absorb and hold onto hydration rather than peeing all of the water out immediately.
No matter how your baby made their way here, you have some tissue that needs repairing. Bone broth contains high levels of Glycine and Proline found in connective tissue that help create Collagen which helps rebuild and reinforce weakened tissues in the abdomen, pelvis, and breasts.
Bone broth is also a great source of protein which also helps aid repair since protein and amino acids are the building blocks of our cells.
Your body has important work to do after birth. Heal, replenish, nurture a new human. Eating easily digestible foods allows your body to focus where it needs to and not be distracted by trying to break down raw kale. (Eat kale! But please cook it! Add it to your bone broth!)
We need to account for the huge internal shifts going on. Our organs are moving back to their original places, hormones are recalibrating, tissues repairing, and systems reorganizing. We have been stretched and torn and require plenty of protein, amino acids, glycine and proline to make collagen, and all of the other vitamins and minerals found in bone broth.
The great news? You can buy bone broth (frozen is best) or you can make your own. And I’ve got my favorite bone broth recipe ready for you. I created this by combining bits and pieces of various recipes, adding and subtracting as needed, and of course with a healthy dose of intuitive improvisation.
I hope you love it as much as I do.
Mamakind Postpartum Bone Broth
What you’ll need:
A BIG pot or large crockpot
- 1-2 pounds of marrow bones of choice (available at most butchers)
- 2 chicken feet (optional) for extra gelatin
- 2-3 egg shells, for extra calcium
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, to draw out minerals from the bones and shells
- 1 gallon filtered water
- 1 tablespoon sea salt, for minerals and taste
- 1/2 tablespoon dried oregano, natural antibiotic
- 1/2 tablespoon black seeds aka Nigella Sativa (optional), Ancients said these cured everything but death
- 1/2 tablespoon dried garlic, ½ tablespoon fresh minced garlic or 1-2 whole cloves of garlic
- 1 piece of dried kombu (iodine rich)
- 1-2 teaspoons turmeric or an inch fresh turmeric sliced, anti-inflammatory
- 1-2 teaspoons ginger or an inch fresh ginger sliced, supports digestion and is anti-inflammatory
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne, thermogenic and warming
- A tad cracked pepper or 1 tsp peppercorns
- A couple whole dried cloves, toxicity prevention, joints, and digestion
- Any other herbs and spices to taste
- 1 onion
- 2 carrots
- 2 stalks of celery
Add when Serving:
Parsley or cilantro
Squeeze of Lemon
What to do:
- If you are using raw bones, especially beef bones, you can deepen the flavor by roasting them in the oven before boiling. Roast for 30 minutes at 350°F.
- Next, put the bones in a large stock pot or pot on the stove with the cool filtered water and vinegar- you can measure the water or just fill it up to the line. Let sit for 20-30 minutes in the cool water. The acid helps make the nutrients in the bones more available.
- Rough chop and add the onion, carrots, and celery to the pot.
- Add egg shells, herbs, salt, pepper, spices- you can always add more once it’s done!
- Cover the pot. When it comes to a boil reduce heat to a simmer. In the first couple hours, a slight foamy layer will form. Scoop and throw it away. Grass fed animals (the only bones you should use for this) won’t produce much, just a warning if you see it 😉
- You’re going to leave it now for 12 hours for fish broth, 24-36 hours for chicken, and 48 hours for beef.
- After that, remove from heat and let cool slightly. Use a fine strainer and discard what’s collected. Once it’s cool-ish, squeeze some lemon in, add chopped cilantro and/or parsley and enjoy! You can store it in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze for later.*
*I like to freeze in silicone ice cube trays and pop one out to drink or to use in a recipe as needed.
Another great way to use bone broth is as a base to a hearty soup.
Consider adding any or all of the following:
- Add Japchae (Japanese sweet potato noodles) or shiratake noodles (made from tofu)
- Add defrosted frozen vegetables like carrots, broccoli, spinach, kale. Or leftover roasted veggies, sweet potato, mushrooms, bokchoy. Whatever you want!
- Add a splash of coconut aminos, apple cider vinegar, or lime juice.
- Or drink it straight to soothe your soul. Grab a book, a cozy blanket, your steaming mug of chicken tea, and breathe.
Here’s to eating those warming foods and sipping bone broth on repeat.