Whenever you read anything in biology, you must ask yourself if it makes sense from an evolutionary perspective. Why is it that a fruit juice cleanse diet is supposed good for you? Is it reasonable to imagine our ancestors having access to such large quantities of fruits to the exclusion of everything else? Are the fruits that we eat today the same as the fruits that our ancestors ate?
From an evolutionary viewpoint, this does not make any sense at all. Humans maintained a stable population during the ice age for 20,000 years without ever knowing fruits.
To truly cleanse your body, it is not the fruit juice cleansing diet that you need. Read the critique of the diet here.
A better alternative is bone broth cleansing diet. Humanity has been adapted to cooking food from animal sources for over 200,000 years, and there is science to prove that it is in fact good for you. Read on to find out.
21 Day Bone Broth Diet
While there are several variations of this diet, the 21-day bone broth diet was made popular by a bestselling book by Dr. Kellyann Petrucci. Dr. Kellyann’s bone broth diet has its critics among those that are still holding on to the low-fat high-carbohydrate pattern of eating. However, it is a coherent application of the latest science on longevity.
Dr. Kelyann presents a brilliant plan for achieving a caloric restriction diet over a period of 21 days without suffering the typical side effects of fasting. The period she chooses is not entirely arbitrary. It is about the time it takes for an adult who has been on a high carbohydrate diet most of her life to adapt to burning fat for fuel.
This is especially true of one of the variations of this diet in which Dr. Kellyann advocates restricting the eating to an 8-hour window, which includes only one major meal consisting mainly of fats, proteins, vegetables and only some fruit. Processed food is not on the menu.
How the bone broth cleanse works
Before understanding how and why a bone broth detox works, it is important to understand what it is not. It does not starve your body of essential nutrients, and it does not overload it with toxic junk like the fruit juice diet.
A bone broth detox removes the biggest offender in diets
It is the antithesis fruit juice cleanse diet. What the fruit juice detox purports to do is “cleanse” the body of toxins. The logic goes that fruits have antioxidants, and they can therefore be used in quantity as much as one desires to sustain the body during a mini-fast.
Unfortunately for its practitioners, fruit juicing detox does not work (read here). When introduced in large quantities, glucose and fructose overwhelm the liver and promote dysfunction. Excess glucose and fructose cause more oxidative stress than the oxidants in fruits can help clear up.
We are not talking about eating an apple here; we are witnessing an ill-advised detox trend that works to do the exact opposite with an abnormal quantity fruit consumed in the process. The bone broth cleansing diet works to remove these offending sugars from dietary intake.
Bone broth detox lowers inflammation
The bone broth detox works to lower inflammation by removing sugars, grains, gluten, starches and other processed foods.
Inflammation is also lowered in the absence of alcohol. Since alcohol is restricted during the 21 days, the load on the liver to metabolize it is no longer impairing its function to produce the ketones necessary to enter ketosis more quickly.
The protein in bone broth is free of oxidized meats and oxidized fats that introduce additional toxins into our bodies. A more direct form of cooking would chemically oxidize molecules and with increased exposure lead to glycation – abnormal binding of proteins.
Nutritional ketosis is accelerated
One of the nuances of entering ketosis for people trying to follow the ketogenic diet is that period of time your body needs to adapt to its new fuel source, namely all that energy stored in fat cells. This process takes time for someone who has acclimated to burning carbohydrates. The liver has to adapt to producing ketones.
Period of low blood glucose and low ketones is reduced
The period in which the liver gets adapted to producing ketones is no different than the feeling after the insulin dump in a fruit juice cleansing diet. In the former, the glucose levels are low because glycogen in the liver has been depleted and the body cannot make it fast enough to meet the body’s energy demands. In the later, the insulin spike overshoots and causes a period of low blood sugar level marked by the feeling of fatigue.
While the fruit juicer takes another dose of dietary glucose to get another boost of energy (only until the next insulin dump takes over), the person on a bone broth diet is introducing easily digestible fatty acids into the blood stream, which makes ketogenesis easier and quicker.
The controlled portion of protein also eliminates one of the biggest mistakes people make when trying to maintain a ketogenic diet. The body will prioritize breaking down proteins into sugar before producing ketones. This is why many people in ketosis find themselves with lower levels of ketones after a high protein meal.
Micronutrients needed for healthy ketosis are in the bone broth
Ketogenic diets are misunderstood because the side effects are typically attributed to the absence of sufficient quantities of salts, magnesium and collagen.
Salt and magnesium are replenished
Contrary to popular belief, most hypertension is caused by a chronic state of elevated insulin levels that signal the kidneys to absorb salts and retain water. In ketosis, kidneys secrete salts into the urine. Therefore, water and salt intake should increase when fasting, restricting calories or entering a state of ketosis.
Many of the side effects of ketosis are attributed to low magnesium levels. These symptoms disappear when dieting on slowly cooked bone broth. Cooking time is of note because the slow cooking process allows for magnesium and other nutrients to be released from the bones into the broth.
Proteins, calcium, collagen and gelatin are abundantly absorbed
One of the side effects of a ketogenic diet is that the body breaks down tissue as well as the fat. This process is called autophagy, and it has its benefits: the body prioritizes breaking down weaker cells and damaged tissue and when dietary amino acids are available, it rebuilds these cells. This rejuvenation of weak cells is one of the primary reasons why calorie restriction diets and fasting induce longevity.
Taken to the extreme, however, the body will protect its nervous system first at the expense of all other tissue. Muscles and bones will begin to suffer excessive breakdown if the diet does not include sufficient proteins, calcium, collagen and gelatin. Proteins are typically not a problem for this group because most ketogenic dieters gravitate towards animal sourced food, but calcium and collagen are also essential for rebuilding tissue.
Fortunately, bone broth offers the solution: Bone broth are extremely rich in these nutrients.
Nutrient-rich bone broth’s other benefits
It is not an accident that your grandma gave you bone broth when you were sick. It is a time-honored tradition in many cultures to dispense it as treatment for any ailment, and it seems to go back very far in our evolutionary psychology.
It alleviates disease
The gelatin found in the broth helps with many digestive disorders: hyperacidity, leaky gut syndrome, Crohn’s disease and colitis.
It repairs your tissue
Visibly, you get healthier skin, hair and nails. That is because most tissue is being repaired with the high intake of gelatin and the supportive state of nutritional ketosis, which promotes regeneration with accelerated autophagy (breakdown) of old cells and genesis of new ones.
The proteins found in bone broth are extremely rich in critical amino acids that play a key role in the repair process. Glycine, for example, is essential for synthesizing healthy DNA, and it plays a key role in nervous system health. These amino acids work to prevent muscle degradation that typically accompanies fasting.
Jean-Pierre Bocquet-Appel; et al. (2005). “Estimates of Upper Palaeolithic meta-population size in Europe from archaeological data” (PDF). Journal of Archaeological Science. 32: 1656–1668. doi:10.1016/j.jas.2005.05.006.
Petrucci, Kellyann. Dr. Kellyann’s Bone Broth Diet: Lose Up to 15 Pounds, 4 Inches – and Your Wrinkles! – In Just 21. Rodale: 2015.