Health Benefits of Bone Broth

11 10 2017

This week is a great time to talk about the benefits of bone soup broth because we have a lot of turkey leftovers to eat. I love a good homemade bone broth on its own or as the base of any kind of soup. It’s warm and delicious and more importantly, has amazing health benefits! So let’s talk bone broth.

Bone broth is basically the homemade soup broth made by boiling the bones of turkey, chicken, or other animal bones (pork/ham, bison, beef, etc.). It’s super easy to make bone broth. All you do is throw the bones in a slow cooker or large pot and fill the pot water, a bit of salt, and herbs or vegetables to spice it up and add extra flavour. Boil it all up for several hours and you’ll have a phenomenally healthy, nourishing bone broth. With turkey bones I like to add an onion, a few stalks of celery (the leafy bits and ends leftover from making stuffing so they aren’t wasted), a few carrots, and a couple cloves of garlic. For spices, I add salt and pepper, a touch of celery seed, thyme, and dried mustard.

Remember when your mom used to make you chicken noodle soup when you were sick? Well it turns out, she was on to something. A good homemade soup broth does actually boost your immune system. But it has a lot of other benefits too.

  • Bone broth helps to boost your immune system and prevent colds and flus. In traditional Chinese medicine, bone broth helps the body adapt to the changing of the seasons in fall and spring. If we don’t adapt well, the shifts in temperature can predispose us to getting sick.
  • Bone broth contains a lot of gelatin and collagen protein so it helps to heal the lining of the gut and prevent or treat food sensitivities. This is very important if you have been diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or struggle with diarrhea/constipation and gas/bloating.
  • The collagen in bone broth also helps to decrease joint aches and pains. If you notice aching in your joints whenever the weather changes, bone broth may be particularly beneficial.
  • Collagen and a little extra hydration in bone broth can also prevent wrinkles and aging for healthy luminous skin.

So if you want to give your health routine a little boost and use up your leftovers at the same time, start making soup! Try it out. I recommend drinking 1 cup of bone broth every day for a few weeks. Make a large batch of soup and freeze what you won’t drink within the next 3-4 days. That way, you will have plenty in the freezer for ongoing use.

Note: store-bought broths are NOT made using bones so they will not provide the health effects of bone broth.


Get Rid of the Bloat after Thanksgiving Dinner

10 10 2017

There is nothing quite as frustrating as feeling bloated after eating and not knowing why. Thanksgiving is about celebrating family and friends and all the amazing things we are grateful for. We eat amazing traditional foods like turkey and cranberry sauce and mashed potatoes and gravy and pumpkin pie and whipped cream. But these delicious celebratory dinners can leave us feeling bloated and tired. Here are my top tips for decreasing the bloat and getting your energy back after thanksgiving so you can feel great for the new work week.

  1. Make a cup of fennel and ginger tea. Fennel and ginger both help with digestion and decreasing bloating. Take 1/2 tsp of dried fennel and chop 1 inch of fresh ginger root into thin slices. Steep the fennel and ginger together in 1-2 cups of boiling hot water for 10 minutes. Take a moment to sit down, relax and drink this digestive tea.
  2. Sitting down and relaxing is another important piece of advice for good digestion. After a busy weekend and preparing for the week ahead takes our bodies out of “rest and digest” mode. Sitting down and taking a few minutes to relax will allow our digestive tracts to start moving and digesting. Spend 20 minutes drinking your tea and reading or listening to calming music for the best benefits.
  3. Massage your abdomen using large clockwise circular motions. This will help your large intestine to start moving so proper elimination can occur. This tip is particularly important if you have a tendency to constipation and/or if you haven’t gone to the bathroom since your big thanksgiving dinner.
  4. Go for a walk. Moving gently can help trapped gas move through the digestive tract and be released. Plus, its a great way to enjoy the fall sweater weather!! We have such amazing fall weather and its important to be grateful for it while it lasts.
  5. Try a modified fast for 1 day. Drink only vegetable juices or homemade turkey broth for 1 day to reset your body and boost your metabolism. Varying your dietary intake by eating a lot one day and eating significantly less the next day helps to keep your metabolism flexible and able to burn off the large family dinners more easily. Its ok to celebrate and indulge but our digestive systems like to take a bit of a rest too. Try this Juice recipe:

Vegetable Juice for Fasting

Juice together and drink:

  • 5 stalks of celery
  • 1/2 fennel bulb
  • 1 bunch of fresh parsley
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 inch chunk of fresh ginger


Happy Thanksgiving!

9 10 2017

IMG_3052Happy Thanksgiving! I am so grateful this fall for my patients and for the work that I do. It is amazing to show up every day to work and have a positive impact on people’s health. It creates a ripple effect; as I work with individuals to improve their health, they have more energy to show up for the people and jobs/careers and hobbies in their lives.

What an honour it is to be a part of your health journey and see it pay off in how you are able to live your life to your full potential. I’m looking forward to the year ahead and making changes that will help you to achieve your best health in the best way!

Thank you!

Dr. Amy

New Expanded Hours!

4 10 2017

Dr. Amy Kroeker, ND announces Saturday hours

We are so excited to announce that we have expanded our hours to better serve you.

Tuesday 9am-4pm

Wednesday 9am-4pm

Thursday Noon-6pm

Saturday 10am-3pm 

Dr. Kroeker, ND is currently accepting new patients.

Call 204-482-4464 or email to book your appointment today!

Saturday Appointments

25 05 2017

Saturday appointments are now available by request if needed. Please email to set up this type of appointment if our weekday hours do not work for your schedule.

Making Home a Healthy Supportive Food Environment

7 01 2017

Recently I moved into a new apartment and I decided that I wanted to make a few changes to support my long-term health and wellness. One of these changes involved designing my kitchen to be an environment supportive of health and wellness. When I counsel patients to make changes to their everyday nutrition, I recommend getting rid of the foods that will be unsupportive of their goals. There are enough places outside of our homes that will tempt us without bringing that temptation right into our own homes. I don’t want to be restrictive in saying “I will never eat sugar or fast food ever again” but I do want to be able to come home and know that the things in my home will benefit me and allow me to nourish my full potential in energy and brain clarity. This way I can have a bit of freedom when I leave and eat elsewhere. I decided I would not bring foods into my apartment that are unhealthy for me. For me personally (everyone is a bit different) that means no dairy (other than grass-fed butter), no sugar (except for just enough to make my fermented kombucha tea), no eggs (they are a food sensitivity for me specifically), and no gluten (I am trialing this for a time).

My one other goal this year is to start transitioning to organic produce. I know the research on chemicals and pesticides in foods but I’ve never actually tried consistently eating organically. It is important that I know how to eat this way since many of my patients are required to eat this way due to being negatively affected by chemicals or pesticides. I also believe it is important for my health and the health of the environment even if I have no noticeable adverse effects from eating non-organic. And really, I’ve never given organic a proper trial so who am I to say organic won’t benefit me? Without a comparison, I do myself a disservice considering the research on endocrine disruptors in food and my tendency to hormonally imbalanced skin.

One of the best resources for environmental toxins and chemicals in food (they also have resources and guides for household cleaners, sunscreens, personal care products, etc.) is the Environmental Working Group ( Each year they test fruits and vegetables to see which ones contain the most chemicals and pesticides and toxins and which ones are relatively low in these compounds. Their list is referred to as the Dirty Dozen, Clean Fifteen. The dirty dozen are the 12 most important foods to eat organically. The clean fifteen are the safest produce to eat conventional versions. Because organic foods can be expensive, this list helps me make the most critical choices as well as the most cost effective choices.

I have really been enjoying my new space. It’s beautiful, albeit tiny. I feel supported, energized, and healthy when I’m at home and knowing I can walk in the door and not have anything to tempt me in my resolutions is incredibly freeing. Of course, I know it would be more difficult if living with a family, but small changes add up and I believe it is extra important to train children to have healthy lifetime habits that will optimize their potential. It’s not that certain foods are off limits, it’s that the available foods in the home are those that support optimal health. Moderation and making healthy choices when unhealthy foods are available can be taught in other ways. A healthy home environment that fosters health and wellness in nutrition and lifestyle allows kids to be their best selves at school, with friends, and in the future at their workplaces and careers. This is why I wanted to put into practice what I talk about every day with patients. And someday I will be able to carry these habits forward into my own family life.

Challenge: Join me! Peruse through your kitchen cupboards, fridge, freezer, and pantry and mark any foods that list sugar (cane syrup, honey, rice syrup, maple sugar, glucose, fructose, sucrose, agave, etc.) in the first 5 ingredients on the ingredient list. When these foods are used up (or you may decide to get rid of some right away rather than eating them), do not replace them. Search for healthier alternatives or simply add more vegetables and fruits to your diet. I don’t typically replace unhealthy foods with alternatives; I just choose a different meal selection. For example, I’ve never tried gluten free bread. It’s never crossed my mind as an alternative. I simply don’t eat bread or toast or sandwiches. I eat whole grains instead like quinoa and wild rice. I do, however, use a small amount of stevia as a sugar replacement occasionally and I do indulge in gluten free crackers as a carrier to transport delicious guacamole from bowl to mouth. Lol. Mmmmm…guacamole. Let me know what works for you!

I bet you want to know what I have in my kitchen cupboards, fridge, and freezer! Stay tuned for the next post: What Does My Crazy Licensed Naturopathic Doctor’s Kitchen Look Like?

New Expanded Hours

5 11 2016

Tier 1 Health is expanding! We have recently added a new office assistant, Renata, to our team to help serve you better and decrease delays on prescription orders and refills. She will be doing appointment reminders, filling orders, and re-scheduling appointments. She is already doing an amazing job!

New hours are also an exciting part of the growth of Tier 1 Health. See more details under the “Appointments” page but we are now open Tuesday and Wednesday 9am-4pm and Thursday noon-6pm.

Watch for Saturday hours to begin soon! So many patients are busy working or at school during regular office hours. To make sure we can help as many people as possible achieve optimal health, weekend hours will begin soon.