“Meat and bone broth equal protein and collagen. Protein is the base of collagen, like your scaffolding. It’s also the base of your cellular matrix,” says Dr. Jillian Sarno Teta. 

Teta is a naturopathic doctor who is also the President of the North Carolina Association of Naturopathic Physicians (NCANP). She is a graduate of Bastyr University, with a doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine.

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Bone broth is known as a great gut healing; however, meat stock is known to seal and heal the gut microbiome, as Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride describes. Both pose challenges for those who are vegetarians.

Bone broth is a long cooked broth which contains collagen building blocks. Meat stock is a short cooked stock that contains collagen and enzymes essential to repairing and rebuilding a damaged gut lining. 

Rebuilding a leaky gut, intestinal permeability, is done with meat stock. Bone broth is beneficial to a slightly damaged gut. A greatly damaged gut requires meat stock. 

P1080597For people who are strict vegetarians or vegans this creates a situation. All is not lost for these people; there are still options.

Teta says, “You do not need to be a meat eater to heal your gut. Emphasise the precursors to collagen, proleine, which is very rich in blueberries. Vitamin C and prolene are key for collagen formation. Also vitamin A and your phytochemicals found on dark leafy vegetables.”

Vegetarian collagen, like this one, can assist. 

If biofilms are a challenge, coconut oil is highly praised by practitioners for breaking up biofilms which often accompany a damaged gut.

Healing the gut, rebuilding the gut and nourishing the body are three totally different things.

“The key for building a diverse microbiome is with a diverse vegetable and fruit intake; it has nothing to do with meat,” Teta says.

P1080600Other professionals disagree. Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD, neurologist, neurosurgeon and author of GAPS says meats and fats are not just important, they are necessary to healing a damaged gut. She also says when the microbiome is damaged to a great degree the body cannot digest fiber, specifically the fiber from vegetables. She adds that healthy meats and fats are imperative to preventing blood sugar swings that cause inflammation. 

 Each person’s situation is different once the body begins to have an altered digestive status. For some people, healing the damage can only be achieved by listening to what the body is telling you it needs. As each person heals, the body talks to you through signs and symptoms. Not understanding what the body is saying can lead people to think it’s not working when in fact the body is telling you what it truly needs. Alternative methods of assistance can be used in certain situations; however, the progress may cause further damage, waste money, and prolong the situation. Working with a qualified practitioner who specializes in repairing leaky gut situations is important.

Click here to read the most commonly asked questions on meat stock and bone broth. 

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*Nourishing Plot is written by Becky Plotner, ND, traditional naturopath, GAPS who sees clients in Rossville, Georgia. Since her son was delivered from the effects of autism (Asperger’s syndrome), ADHD, bipolar disorder/manic depression, hypoglycemia and dyslexia through food she continued her education specializing in Leaky Gut and parasitology through Duke University, finishing with distinction. This is not a news article published by a paper trying to make money. This blog is put out by a mom who sees first hand the effects of nourishing food vs food-ish items. No company pays her for writing these blogs, she considers this a form of missionary work. It is her desire to scream it from the rooftops so that others don’t suffer from the damaging effect of today’s “food”.

Jillian Teta spoke at an online conference on June 29, 2015.



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