Is Bone Broth Safe During Pregnancy? Are There Benefits?

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Written by Amy Kaczor RDN

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Bone broth is a delicious and comforting soup base that many enjoy as a warm beverage. However, is this nutritious broth safe for pregnant women? Let’s discuss it!

Bone broth is safe for pregnant women and is an excellent source of protein, vitamins, and minerals. However, it can be high in sodium. 

Let’s dive into more information about it and its potential benefits for pregnant women. Read on to learn more!

Is Bone Broth Safe for Pregnant Women? 

Bone broth is safe for pregnant women when consumed in normal amounts. Whether it is homemade or store-bought, such as the popular brand Kettle and Fire, it is a nutritious beverage that is low in calories and high in protein

However, as many broths or soups are, it is very high in sodium. For reference, a one cup or eight fluid ounce serving of it contains 451 milligrams of sodium!

The American Heart Association recommends consuming no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium each day, and eating high-sodium foods when pregnant isn’t recommended. However, 1,500 milligrams is even more ideal for promoting heart health.

However, if you make your own healthy version at home, you can control exactly how much sodium goes into your food.

The Benefits of Bone Broth for Pregnancy

Bone broth has many health benefits for pregnant women due to its impressive nutritional profile. For example, one cup or eight fluid ounce serving (which is approximately 240 grams) of it contains only 80 calories but a whopping 10 grams of protein (source: United States Department of Agriculture [USDA] Food Data Central)

Bone broth made from chicken in a glass jar

Protein needs are elevated during pregnancy, with reputable sources recommending that pregnant women consume 75 to 100 grams of protein each day (source: American Pregnancy Association).

Protein is needed for the growth of the developing baby’s tissues, including the brain, breast, and uterine tissue growth in the mother, and for increasing blood supply. 

Additionally, 100 grams of it provides half of a gram of fat, five grams of carbohydrates, and even a bit of iron. Iron is an essential mineral that supports blood health by helping red blood cells transport oxygen to cells all around the body (source: National Institutes of Health [NIH]).

The only downside is the sodium content, as previously mentioned.

Can Bone Broth Help with Pregnancy Stretch Marks? 

Unfortunately, drinking bone broth has not been shown to help with pregnancy stretch marks. 

Since it contains collagen, many pregnant women wonder if drinking it can help with pregnancy stretch marks.

Collagen is a component of the skin; therefore, collagen (whether through food or supplements) can help improve skin elasticity, collagen density, and skin hydration (source: Journal of Drugs in Dermatology). 

However, there is no evidence to suggest that bone broth aids in the reduction or prevention of stretch marks. There are still other reasons to drink it during pregnancy diet, though, as detailed above.

Which Type of Bone Broth is Best for Pregnancy?

The primary types of bone broth are chicken and beef. Based on the nutrition information for the beef and chicken flavors from Kettle and Fire, chicken has significantly less protein than beef.

For example, a 100-gram serving of chicken bone broth contains 1.25 grams of dietary protein, while 100 grams of beef broth contains 4.18 grams. 

They also have flavor differences, with chicken tasting milder and beef being more hearty and rich. 

Bone broth made from beef, served in a soup bowl

While they do have slight nutritional differences between them, go with the one that is the most accessible, affordable, and (of course!) delicious. Many brands even make products that have multiple types of bone broth in them, like a combination of beef, chicken, and even turkey.

Additionally, if you can opt for no sodium added or low sodium varieties of your favorite bone broth or make it homemade, making your own at home can help you to control precisely how much salt it contains. 

Can Bone Broth Help with Pregnancy Nausea? 

Since many pregnant women experience morning sickness or pregnancy-related nausea, a glass bowl of it can be a helpful way to remedy it. It is suggested to eat bland meals, such as broth or soup) to help treat pregnancy nausea and morning sickness (source: American Pregnancy Association).

Chicken bone broth may be best in the case of nausea because of its more mild and light flavor compared to beef.

Additionally, staying hydrated through drinking small sips of fluids throughout the day can help with nausea as well. However, since sodium can actually promote dehydration, stick with the lower sodium varieties from the store or have homemade bone broth.

In conclusion, I hope you found this article helpful as a guide to drinking bone broth during pregnancy and how to incorporate it into a healthy diet.