We love a hearty bone or veggie broth for its immune boosting power—and amazing benefits for healthy skin.
The weather is starting to turn, the nights getting colder, here in the northern hemisphere. A warm Broth is the perfect food for this time of year.
Bone broth is very much a staple in our house, made every week for all its immune system boosting goodness—and its ability to help keep skin healthy, elastic and supple. We also love a good veggie broth for the same reasons. Both deliver different key nutrients to support and maintain your skin, its health and well-being.
Discover why chicken soup is good for the soul and so much more. This blog in a nutshell:
Why Your Skin Elasticity Declines in the First Place
Collagen is a crucial component in your hair, skin, teeth and nails. The tricky thing is that as you age, your body’s natural collagen production declines, further compromised by environmental factors like:
Your body knows what to do. It is already wired to make collagen from nutrients found in a healthy diet, including fruits, veggies, legumes, and whole grains. This is where including Broths—bone and/or veggie—in your diet can really step in to help your body stimulate collagen production.
What is Broth?
Bone broths—beef, chicken, fish, lamb and more—are staples in the traditional diets in many cultures. Back in the the ancient day, it was a way our ancestors made use of every part of an animal. Bones and marrow, skin and feet, tendons and ligaments—all the stuff they couldn’t eat—were boiled and then simmered over a period of days. Strain out the animal matter and, Voila, they got bone broth, a rich flavoured, nutrient-dense, easy to digest way to boost their immune systems and stay healthy, from the inside out. A steaming bowl of stew or curry, anyone?
Vegetable broths are equally a staple in traditional diets all over the world. It was—and still is—a great way to get plant nutrition into your body, in a warm, hearty format. Back in the ancient day, a veggie broth was made from boiling and then simmering a combination of vegetables together in water. Strain out the plant matter and, Voila, they got veggie broth, a flavourful, nutritious boost to the immune system and over all health. Miso or dal, anyone?
It would appear that meals that combine both broth types may just deliver the best of both worlds. A study of chicken soup (containing both animal and vegetable ingredients) conducted by the University of Nebraska Medical Center investigated what it was in the soup that made it so beneficial for colds and flu. Researchers found that some of the nutrients produced when making chicken broth reduced inflammation in the respiratory system, improved digestion and helped relieve joint pain, while nourishing and protecting organs—like your skin. Good to know that Grandma, officially and scientifically proven, knew best!
Collagen: The Building Block for Your Skin
Collagen is responsible for maintaining the elasticity of your skin. Your skin is made of collagen fibres which get damaged by those pesky environmental factors noted above. You can help your skin by consuming foods that have the nutrients your body needs to produce more collagen.
Glycine is an amino acid, a building block, that helps create proteins, in particular collagen. It is kind of a multi-tasker, too: it helps the metabolic synthesis of certain nutrients that the brain and nerves use for energy; and it is also very valuable for slowing down the loss of cartilage in joints, which happens naturally as we age. As we age, our joints and skin can't have enough Glycine. It keeps creating collagen, repairing damaged tissues within joints; and restoring the collagen in our skin that breaks down due to ongoing free radical damage. Glycine is important for digestion as well as cognitive function and—BONUS—it helps your body create enough serotonin for a good night’s sleep.
Proline is another amino acid building block your body uses for making protein. Your body can make proline on its own, and it can also get it through your diet. Proline helps skin retain moisture, adding to a supple look and feel. It also helps support collagen production to prevent the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Several high-protein foods are believed to nurture collagen production because they contain the amino acids that make collagen—glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline. These include poultry, meat, eggs, cheese, legumes, beans leafy greens, dried seaweed, watercress, asparagus, shiitake mushrooms, and cabbage.
Collagen production also requires nutrients like zinc that is found in shellfish, legumes, meats, nuts, seeds, and whole grains; vitamin C from bell peppers, and tomatoes; or herbs such as cilantro leaf, thyme, dill, and parsley; potassium from winter and summer squashes or potatoes; magnesium from leafy greens and legumes.
So there are a number of tasty ingredients you could put into making a nutritious bone broth base, a veggie broth base or a soup using that both broths. Either way, its a win win for your skin.
Hyaluronic Acid: Your Hydration Regulator.
Hyaluronic acid helps your skin hold onto moisture and water. It also plays a crucial role in wound healing, skin repair and tissue regeneration. High water content in skin helps it retain resilience, pliability and an overall youthful look.
Bone broth is a good whole food source of Glucosamine, which has been shown to stimulate hyaluronic acid synthesis in your body to accelerate wound healing, improve skin hydration and decrease wrinkles(3).
Other foods such as tofu and edamame, leafy greens, almonds and root veggies provide nutrients that can naturally increase hyaluronic acid synthesis in your body.
You can also add naringenin, a flavonoid that blocks the activity of hyaluronidase, an enzyme responsible for the breakdown of hyaluronic acid. Oranges don’t contain hyaluronic acid, but they do contain naringenin. So, eating foods such as citrus fruits, oranges, figs and tomatoes could help you maintain healthy levels of hyaluronic acid in your body.
Make Your Own Broth
Making your own bone broth is an art really, and an exercise in slow-boil patience. Here is a bone broth recipe from Blue Bird Provisions, maker and purveyor of Bone Broth. Founder Conner is a trail/ultra runner, dad, husband, and wolf-dog dad. In 2016, he used bone broth to heal a devastating foot injury that doctors said would never heal. He was told that he would never run again. Using bone broth, he got back to ultra running and winning 50km races. Now, I’m not a big athlete but I do swear by bone broth for my own bone and skin health, as well as Thom’s.
Conner also has a recipe that he calls Vegan Bone Broth. It’s a nutrient-rich, flavourful stock made using all plant-based ingredients. He says, “We substitute bones for dried mushrooms, adaptogens and wakame seaweed to give your an irresistibly nourishing beverage with a truly umami flavor.You can buy premade vegetable broth bases, but my advice is to avoid them as they are truly the worst and most processed food products out there.”
I’m looking forward to Fall Equinox this week, and turning inward once again. A warm Broth is the perfect food for this time of year. So happy to be broth-making and broth-drinking, for all its benefits— especially that cosy, warm, hug-from-the-inside-out feeling. Yummm!
Body Butters Deliver deeply nourishing, natural, protective care to your skin. It's a must-have in your skin care routine.
We love Body Butters with an almost embarrassing passion! Why? For their amazing ability to keep your skin and skin biome nourished and protected, especially during the coldest months of the year.
Our Body butters are an oil-based, cream-like product designed to moisturize and hydrate skin, while giving it a protection barrier from the elements. Not to mention they smell wonderful! Fear not, those of you who are scent sensitive. We also make an Unscented version. And you don’t need much to enjoy their benefits--a little goes a long way.
The Benefits of Body Butter
1. Natural ingredients
This one is a huge benefit because natural ingredients deliver everything your skin everything it needs to stay healthy and safe without killing your skin biome. The skin biome, like the gut biome, is an ecosystem composed of diverse, helpful microorganisms that live symbiotically with us. While our skin provides them with a buffet to feed on, they protect us from harmful organisms. Research shows that the organisms in our skin biome might also have a role in educating T cells found in the skin, priming them to respond to similarly marked pathogenic organisms. Think of them as an early warning and training system. Basically, we need our skin biome to be happy and healthy for the overall wellness of both of us. Natural ingredients do just that.
2. Deep Nourishment
Made primarily with plant butters and oils, Body Butters are packed with essential fats, minerals and vitamins, providing rich, deep skin conditioning. They provide more intense nourishment than Body Lotions. We make ours with Shea Butter, Sunflower Oil, Rice Bran Oil and Avocado Oil. This skin love comes from the essential fatty acids, minerals and vitamins naturally found in its plant ingredient list. You can use Body Butters all over your body or focus their use on usually drier parts of the body--elbows, knees, feet.
3. Barrier Protection
The plant butters and oils, in combination with Bees wax, help form a protective layer over your skin. They lock in moisture, and protect your skin from dirt, debris and other compounds in the environment that can stress your skin out. If you are a swimmer, for example, Body butter provides a thin, waterproof barrier that can help protect your skin from the ravages of chlorine in the pool; or salt in the sea.
4. Keeping it youthful
Vitamins E and A are plentiful in our Body Butters, as well as essential fatty acids, minerals and antioxidants. These help keep your skin soft and supple. Shea butter also contains oliec and stearic acid that work to help boost collagen production, keeping skin elasticity, texture and composition alive and well.
5. Soothes Irritation
Body Butter has a unique ability to restore pH balance to your skin. It’s ability to melt and absorb quickly into skin helps soothe skin irritations. We’ve gone one further step and added Aloe Vera extract to boost skin soothing power.
6. Seasonal Protection
You know how winter can be on the skin. The cold, dryness can suck the moisture right out of it. Here’s where Body Butters SHINE in skin care benefit land. It’s triple properties of deep moisturizing, skin soothing and barrier protection replenish, revitalize and protect skin from the elements.
7. Things to Watch Out For
All of that lovely benefit said, there are some things to watch out for, Body butter is anhydrous--that means it moisturizes but doesn’t hydrate. You need water based ingredients for that. So, if you are experiencing dry skin due to lack of hydration, then our Body Lotion might work better for you.
If you have oily body skin or conditions like body acne, Body Butters may be overkill. That amazing protective barrier means that oils can get locked in and cause breakouts.
My Favourite Body Butter Ways
Body Butters are actually quite multipurpose, You can use them for a few different moisturizing needs. Here are some suggestions, based on how I use them in my own skin care routine:
One of my favourite times to use body butter is after a shower. After a shower, your skin is warm, which helps in the application and absorption of the butters and oils in Body Butter. Also, your pores are also open to receive its moisturizing and barrier seal.
To use our Body butter, put a dime’s worth in the palm of your hand. Rub both hands together until the butter melts. This should be enough to do both arms or both legs. Remember, you’re going for a thin layer of butter that your skin can absorb quickly.
Gently massage the Body Butter into your skin. Take some time to enjoy that self-massage. In fact, treat it like a ritual to show your body the love it deserves, something you really look forward to doing.
For dry skin on your hands and feet, you can use Body Butter as a deep moisturizing treatment. I’ve found this helps when I’m having eczema flare ups, which occur primarily on my hands. Try this 2-3 times a week for softer, soothed skin.
Take a pea sized amount of Body Butter into the palm of your hand. Rub your hands together until the butter is melted. Massage into your hands. Put on some cotton gloves and go to sleep. This gives the butter and oils time to work their magic. Start with the same amount for your feet. Use more as needed. Massage the butter into your feet, especially the dry, hard bits. Put on some cotton socks and hop under the covers.
If you Hair mask
Back in the day, my mum would apply coconut oil to our hair once a week to condition and nourish our hair ad scalp. I really looked forward to this weekend ritual because i really enjoyed the feeling of my mum's hands massaging my head. I would close my eyes and drift away.
These days I do the same ritual for myself using Body Butter. I've found it is actually brilliant for my hair, especially the fly-aways and dry ends. It helps smooth them out and replenish moisture. I like using it in my hair once a week as a mask treatment, just like mum did.
To apply a Body Butter Mask to your hair, take a small amount of body butter into your palm. Rub your palms together to melt the butter. Then apply it to the ends of your hair, not the roots--that will make your hair greasy. Let it sit for 10 minutes or more. Wash the butter out with warm water and/or a VERY light shampoo. Style as usual.
Why do you like using body butters? What are your favourite ways to use it?