BONES x 3+
I often recommend bones as a nutrient. WHAT?! No, we’re not talking ‘Paleo’ in the sense of a bone chewing frenzy in your gazelle skin over a campfire, or a doggie chew toy facsimile, but something better. This is especially great for my clients who have a risk factor for osteoporosis. But they are a fantastic nourishing choice for ALL of us, not just for bone building, but for our gut, immune system, hair, nails, and joints.

We’re in the middle of our BONES x 3+ this week, and it’s chicken soup night at our house – with two organic chicken carcasses pulled from the freezer (ok, two weeks – it was hot last week and I didn’t feel like making soup then, alright?) to the stew pot. We eat far less meat and chicken for a couple reasons, but quite honestly, it’s mostly economical. As ‘right’ a choice as organic is, the financial factor is a significant one, and the BONES x 3+ system really makes organic animal meats AFFORDABLE for us! For instance, one whole organic chicken might cost me $15.00 (yikes and OUCH!), but making 4 meals out of it for 3 people brings that meat cost down to $3.75 per MEAL, or only $1.25 per person. Even less when you consider leftovers for lunches! Not too shabby – take THAT, fast food! So…go out and be brave, buy your first organic meat today and give the BONES x 3+ system a try!

**Note: as always, remember the ‘HEALTHY IN-HEALTHY OUT’ rule – Do your best to use as healthy a bone source as you can get – try to stay away from commercial feed lot animals whose health hardly has a chance – go for the animals whose bones grow strong and usually more mature on the nutrients from grass, bugs, and weeds (this is where all those great minerals and microorganisms come from to do all that good for us).

This article is specific to chicken, but any meat can be enjoyed similarly. Here’s how we do it:

Stage 1+: Main Dish
This is normally spread into TWO main dish meals (hence the 3+).
First we have our “meat” night, roasted, grilled, or whatever floats our boat, with tasty veggie accompaniments. The second meal is very often our favorite chicken enchiladas but sometimes a quick stir fry or casserole dish using the chopped leftovers. And we often have leftovers for lunches to boot! I may need to share some recipes, right?

Stage 2: Soup
These healthy dirt and bug pecking chickens are going to fortify our bones and health deliciously more than a couple times. First, their healthy protein as roast chicken, casserole, ad leftovers. Then the soup, fortified with some nutritious colorful veggies like carrots, celery, onion, and swiss chard (or other dark greens) – plus lotsa garlic, turmeric, sea salt, and pepper. To start the soup, I first simmer the carcasses a couple hours, take them out to cool, and pick the meat off to put back into that lovely broth. Here’s the bone twist – I do NOT toss those bones out yet – see Stage 3. I remove the bones from the soup kettle and add all the goodies, simmer til done, and serve.

Stage 3 is BONE BROTH.
Ew, yes, you read that right. Did you know bone broth is AMAZING for your OWN bones…AND your gut, immune system, hair, nails, and joints? Anyway, this is really simple and super cheap – you were going to throw those bones out anyway, and consider all the supplements you won’t be buying so much of!

This is much like making the soup, but so easy there’s no ‘busy schedule’ excuse, and becomes one of those SUPERFOODS in no time and with almost no effort! I pull out my handy dandy crock pot, put those already cooked bones in water to cover, add some raw vinegar (important), seasonings, and cook on low for….24hrs! This allows the very best of all that’s in those bones to become your nourishment. The broth is now infused with all the glorious nutrients of the bones and cartilage in easily absorbent form – from calcium to the valuable chondroitin and glucosamine sold in pricey joint supplements. Add some seasonings and enjoy either as a soup or drink. And if you try beef, HELLO, French Onion Soup! I strain and freeze it in paper cups or ice cubes and toss in a ziploc to keep fresh til I want to warm one up to drink later. In what quantity? I go for consuming one 8oz cup daily til I run out, then I make sure to put ‘meat with bones’ on the grocery list.

Still ‘ew’? As it gets cooler out, this is a great nutritious warm-up drink in lieu of, or addition to, tea the evening in your coffee nook or curled up on the sofa with a book or your favorite TV drama (my latest fave is “Orange Is The New Black”) or comedy. More detailed information on bone broth health benefits and how to make it can be found here: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/12/16/bone-broth-benefits.aspx

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