The Genius Life Podcast with Max Lugavere – Marco Canora on Why You Need Bone Broth (With Recipes)

Check out The Genius Life Episode Page & Show Notes

Key Takeaways

  • “If we all cooked a little bit more, we’d see great improvements in our health, on a national level”
  • Find time to shop more often – fresh food is more nutrient dense
  • Society has obsessed with convenience in a way that’s really harming our health
  • Being able to cook, makes the process of eating healthier SOOO much easier
    • Figure out a way to enjoy the process of cooking -You may not enjoy flossing and brushing, but you do it because you know it’s good for you
  • If you walk into a McDonalds with $5, you can either buy 5 hamburgers, or 1 salad – what do you think most people will buy?
  • Most commercially sold bone broths don’t use fresh vegetables – most use either vegetable powders, or frozen vegetables
    • This will be the case even though the ingredient label says something like “carrots”
  • The main benefits of bone broth, come from consuming the collagen, which contains a whole slew of beneficial amino acids
    • The collagen is the connective tissue of the bones that you use to make the broth
    • Collagen is also really helpful for wound healing
  • “We have been gathering around fires and cooking food for a long time, and it’s the center of who we are as humans. I think we forgot that.”

Intro

The Early Days 

  • Marco used to be very unhealthy – eating mainly bread, drinking tons of coffee, and smoking cigarettes
  • A visit with a nutritionist made him do a complete 180
    • His uric acid levels were off the charts, he was pre-diabetic, and had very bad lipid numbers
  • Marco recalls getting started on his health journey after reading The 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferriss
    • As he read further online, he kept seeing references to how beneficial bone broth was

Why do most chefs eat unhealthy?

  • Family meals with the entire restaurant staff usually consist of pork from “not the best pig in the world”, lots of potatoes, and pasta
  • “As a chef you’re running around like a mad man, and you don’t really think about it. You just need to be fueled”
  • The chef lifestyle is very conducive to staying up late and drinking booze

Food Literacy Has Been Lost

  • “So many children today couldn’t identify a parsnip or a celery root, or even understand that carrots grow in the dirt”
  • “If we all cooked a little bit more, we’d see great improvements in our health, on a national level”
    • Society needs to be cooking more, and have a better understanding of food
  • “Cooking and being a chef, is like being a pharmacist for food”
  • A lot of people think it’s only junk food that tastes good – “But I’d like to think a great chef can elicit that response from really healthy foods”

Tips for Getting Healthier in the Kitchen

  • Find time to shop more often – fresh food is more nutrient dense
    • “I’d rather have something that’s come out of the ground more recently than something that’s been out of the ground for 3 weeks”
      • So shop more often to get fresh food
    • “We all want convenience, but we give up way too much for convenience from a health perspective”
      • “We’re obsessed with convenience in a way that’s really harming our health”
  • Figure out a way to enjoy the process of cooking
    • You may not enjoy flossing and brushing – but you do it because you know it’s good for you
    • Cooking should be the same – it makes eating healthier SOOO much easier
  • If you’re willing to do the labor, there’s a savings to be had by cooking yourself
    • Example – buy a whole chicken, and learn how to break that chicken down
      • Make a meal out of each breast, out of the thighs, and the the legs, and then the bones

Some Interesting Stats

  • Americans spend very little on food – the percentage of our check that goes to food is very low compared to other countries
  • 60% of our calories come from 3 plants – wheat, corn, and rice
    • These 3 crops are subsidized, so they’re really cheap
  • If you walk into a McDonalds with $5, you can either buy 5 hamburgers, or 1 salad – what do you think most people will buy?

Making Bone Broth

  • Most commercially sold bone broths don’t use fresh vegetables – most use either vegetable powders, or frozen vegetables
    • This will be the case even though the ingredient label says something like “carrots”
  • The signature broth at Brodo is called “Hearth Broth” – how is it made?
  • A large pot is filled with with:
    • Organic high quality bones with some meat on them – like organic turkey drumsticks, or organic chicken drumsticks
      • The meat adds lots of glutamate – this makes the broth taste much better 
    • Carrots, celery, onion, bay leaf, and peppercorn
    • Everything is covered with filtered water
    • The pot is brought to a boil with an open top
    • It’s cooked for 16-18 hours
    • Impurities are skimmed off (this isn’t very common)
  • As a side note – Marco doesn’t add apple cider vinegar (AVC) to the broth
    • It’s commonly thought that doing so breaks down the bones better, to help extract the minerals
      • The typical bone broth recipes online include ACV
    • But Marco thinks you would need so much vinegar to this, that it would change the taste too dramatically 

What are the benefits of consuming bone broth?

  • Marco doesn’t believe it’s really about the mineral content of the bone broth
    • There’s better ways to get minerals – Like eating the bones from canned sardines, eating leafy greens, mushrooms etc.
  • The real benefits come from consuming the amino acid structure of the collagen protein in the broth
    • The collagen is the connective tissue of the bones that you’re cooking – it manifests as the gelatin in your broth (when you cool the bone broth, and put it in the fridge, this is why it becomes jelly like)
    • “It’s in the glycine, it’s in the gltuamine, it’s in the proline, and the argenine” – all of these amino acids are in the collagen
    • This amino acid structure is very good for the gut
  • Collagen is great for wound healing 
    • Our skin is 75% collagen
    • The protein in our body, 25% of it is collagen protein
    • The lining of our gut, our arteries, our eyeballs, and our joints are all made with collagen
    • “We’re not getting enough of it as a society today”

Are there vegetarian options of bone broth?

  • Brodo has 1 vegetable broth option – made with seaweed, shitake mushrooms, and a bunch of organic vegetables
    • Seaweed and shitake are very high in glutamate, which is very savory
    • BUT this broth really lacks the amino acids/collagen compared to a meat based broth

What are some good things to add to bone broth?

  • Fresh tumeric, fresh ginger, and fresh garlic
    • Marco will often mix these with Hearth Broth, as well as grass fed butter, using a blender – he says it tastes amazing 
  • Freshly mortarized herbs (done using a mortar and pestle)

Other Questions and Tidbits

  • Where does Brodo source their ingredients?
  • Can you freeze broth? 
    • Absolutely 
  • Where can you get bones for the broth?
    • “The vast majority of meat in our country, is not good quality meat” – You don’t want to make broth out of bad quality bones
    • Marco’s advice – get to know your butcher
    • Also a good start – an organic chicken
      • Marco likes organic chicken wings – wings make a great broth
  • Are there different nutrients in chicken vs. beef broth?
    • Chicken is heavier on collagen type II, and beef is heavier on collagen type I and III
      • Collagen types are explained here
  • Use grass fed beef if you can, for beef broth
  • Try not to use the femur bone (aka the marrow bone) for beef broth
    • “This is a horrible bone for broth” – The femur bone is the thigh bone, it’s very flat, so when it gets processes it’s very easy to strip all the meat off it
      • If you make a broth with clean white bone – it won’t taste very good
        • Many of the broth’s flavors, and the glutamates, come from the meat
  • 90% of the broth you buy in a super market is made with “base”
    • It’s basically a “bullion like paste” mixed with water – it’s not as nutritious 
    • By making it was this paste, as opposed to bone, it doesn’t have to be cooked for that long (only about 1 hour) – so it’s much cheaper for companies to make

Wrapping Up

  • “Health and wellness folks don’t talk enough about the notion of community” 
    • Having a community and support group, and social engagement (NOT on your phone) – there’s huge value in that
    • “Having quality relationships helps you be a better human on every level”
    • “We have been gathering around fires and cooking food for a long time, and it’s the center of who we are as humans. I think we forgot that.”

Organ Meats

  • On the back of the menu at Hearth, there’s an infographic saying – “When the cheetah takes down the gazelle, the first and only thing it eats are the guts. It realizes where the biggest bang for the buck is in terms of nutrients. We should learn from nature.”
  • Organ meats have so many more good nutrients compared to other standard animal proteins
  • They’re cheap as well

3 Things Everyone Should Have in Their Kitchen

What does it mean to Marco to live a genius life?

  • To connect with people eyeball to eyeball – get away from your screens

A Great Quote

  • “Our health and wellness has to start from a place of enjoyment, and enjoyment happens from delicious”
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