If you’re looking for a diet for weight loss or body detox, you have many to pick from. One option is the 21-day dietary plan known as the Bone Broth Diet. As the name suggests, the main part of the diet is eating lots of bone stock, which has lots of nutrients like collagen. Meanwhile, the Paleo diet includes whole foods that early humans ate pre-agriculture. Fasting also provides benefits, as weight loss and body cleanses. All of these features team up to provide lots of benefits, including a diet with lots of plain soup during the day.
As with other diets, it’s important to know how it works, benefits, and risks. This diet puts bone broth front and center, but it’s not just about eating just bone broth for three weeks. Then there are other elements like Paleo and fasting. There’s no question that all three of these approaches can provide different benefits. For example, swap out foods loaded with salt, sugar, and bad fats is a good start. On the other hand, in theory, there could be some drawbacks. For example, the Paleo diet includes many healthy foods but doesn’t allow some healthy foods like grains and beans.
What’s the Bone Broth Diet?
You’ve probably eaten bone broth, it is a basic recipe that includes cooking animal bones over low heat for 12-24 hours. This process releases many nutrients in the bone marrow like collagen and others. Today you can find protein powders available that include bone broth’s nutrients.
This particular diet is a 3-week (21 days) diet. Dr. Kellyann Petrucci made this diet popular. Here’s how it works. You have to go on the Paleo or “caveman diet” for five days, then you fast for two days.
How much bone broth do you eat? While you follow the Paleo diet, you have to eat some bone broth (1-3 cups). Then during fasting days, bone broth is cranked up to 3-6 cups.
In a nutshell, this is a hybrid diet. It’s a blend of Paleolithic Diet, intermittent fasting (IF), and bone broth—lots of it.
The Paleo Diet has been one of the biggest trending diets in recent years. In this diet, you are required to eat lean protein, veggies, and some nuts/seeds, and fruits. It swaps out stuff like beans, peas, grains, and white sugar.
Both broth feature is Paleo 2.0 since it adds bone broth. It’s believed early humans probably “cooked” animal bones by mixing them with hot rocks. This led to the use of iron pots/pans and water to simmer the bones.
Another key feature of this diet is intermittent fasting. This requires you to follow a strict cycle of fasting and eating. Some options include 16/18 or 18/6. It causes your body to go into “ketosis” like on the keto diet. So, you get energy from fat stores.
Studies show that IF can turn your body into a fat-burning machine. It also might provide benefits related to muscle mass, energy levels, higher metabolism, and mental focus. This can boost your physical/mental health.
Bone Broth Diet: Possible Benefits
Fun Fact: The human body has 360 joints. It’s important to protect them since every joint can get arthritis. Bone broth can help. For example, it might help to protect joints by becoming all-important collagen for the body.
As we age and use our joints, the cartilage in them starts wearing down. So, it’s important to protect them through diet and lifestyle.
Studies show meat broth might also help to fight osteoarthritis. This includes treatment and prevention. Various studies show that collagen can help people with arthritis in knee joints, for example.
We know from ads and experience that soup is “good food” but can it help you sleep? Some studies show that one amino acid in the broth might help people get more shut-eye at night.
The amino acid also seems to help people feel less tired during the next day. People with sleep deprivation could eat a basic healthy dinner with bone broth before going to bed.
This might be surprising since we’re talking about basic broth/soup. The number of nutrients you’ll get will be based on different factors. They include the types of bones you use, how long you simmer them, etc.
That said, there’s no question consuming the bones/tissues can provide several benefits. Here are some of the nutrients you can get from the broth?
- Vitamins A/K
- Fatty Acids
You’ll amp up your nutrients when you combine the broth with other whole foods on the Paleo diet.
Many health experts believe this is one of the top causes of diseases. It’s believed some amino acids (building blocks of proteins) in bone broth might help to battle inflammation.
This is greatly related to gut health. Some studies show that the soup might help to increase the gut’s good bacteria and reduce inflammation.
Bone Broth Diet: Risks and Drawbacks
If you’re vegetarian or vegan, then you can’t follow this diet because it’s meat-based. People often mix up these two terms. While vegetarians don’t eat meat, vegans don’t eat any animal products.
The bottom line is this diet would be a no-go for both vegans and vegetarians. It’s also not one you can swap in substitutes to make it vegan-friendly.
As noted, there are lots of nutrients in the animal bone-based broth. However, it’s nowhere near the nutrients we need daily. If you’re going to do a bone broth detox for a few days, that’s one thing. Consuming it for 21 days is quite another.
There’s another factor. The Paleo diet includes lots of whole foods but also basically swaps out grains, beans, and dairy. The argument is, cavemen didn’t eat it, so we shouldn’t either.
When you ditch a whole food group like grains, you’ll have to get them from other places. Beans, milk, and cheese can also provide many health benefits like plant-based protein and calcium.
This is somewhat related to nutrients but more about energy levels. Bone broth is low-calorie, and even on fasting days, you’ll be getting minimum energy.
4. Cooking Time
When picking food, it’s true that “fresh is best” and that includes bone broth. To make this food properly, you should simmer it for 12 to 24 hours. That’s a long time even if you’re used to using a crockpot.
Yes, you could purchase commercial broth or even protein powder. The problem is it’s probably made in a factory. So, you’ll be getting the same stuff but it’s highly unlikely it will be as good as a fresh batch.
It doesn’t mean you should automatically skip this plan but it’s something to think about before going on the bone broth diet.