The Super-Gut-Healing Food You Should Be Making With Your Thanksgiving Leftovers But Aren't
Here at mbg, we believe that coming together and celebrating community is a key part of wellness—which is why, this Thanksgiving, we won't be asking you to forgo turkey for salad or sacrifice diving into a bowl of stuffing. Instead, we're arming you with little tweaks that let you keep the best foods of Thanksgiving and ditch the worst (hello, food coma). From the one ingredient that'll make your traditional desserts gut-healing and blood-sugar-balancing to the pregame breakfast your stomach will thank you for, think of it as having your pumpkin pie and eating it too. That's something we can all be grateful for.
STOP! The most gut-healing part of your Thanksgiving dinner is about to go in the garbage. I'm talking, of course, about the bones. Bone broth is one of the most healing ways to utilize your holiday scraps: it fights infections like the cold and flu, helps heal a leaky gut, reduces joint pain and inflammation, and helps make your hair shiny and your skin glowy.
"Bone broth has been used in traditional societies around the world for generations as a potent and nourishing food medicine," explains Will Cole, D.C., a functional medicine expert and mbg Collective member. "It is also one of the foods that I recommend to my patients as one tool to aid in healing from gut problems such as leaky gut syndrome, candida overgrowth, and SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth)."
It's also incredibly easy to make. Just chuck your turkey bones and any leftover veggie scraps (onion peels, carrot skins, herbs that didn't make it into the stuffing) into a large pot, and cover it with water, a pinch of sea salt, and a splash of apple cider vinegar (this helps break down the bones to release the nutrients into the broth). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 8 to 10 hours (if you have a crockpot, just cook on low for 8 to 10 hours). Pour liquid through a fine-mesh strainer and discard the solids.
I like to drink my bone broth straight in a mug—I find it to be very comforting and grounding—but you can also use it as the base of a soup, to deglaze veggies, and even in hot chocolate. Cole even uses his in smoothies! Whatever you don't use, you can freeze in ice cube trays for the future.
Eliminating food waste and healing our guts? That's a Thanksgiving tradition we can get behind.
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