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Chinese Health Gem of the Month: Bone Broth for Enhancing Vitality and Immune System

by Rene Ng, DOM, AP, L.Ac.  


Bone-based soups are a common dish seen at dinner tables in most households in China. Soup and daily nutrition have been used, along with herbs, as the primary source for maintaining wellness and addressing health issues for thousands of years. A majority of all soups used to tonify the body contain some form of bones as part of the ingredient.  

In Chinese medicine, the kidney system is integral to healthy development, as well as maintaining strong bones. The Chinese believe that animals with strong, tough bones contain the nutritional substances that allow them to maintain a tough bone density as well.  

So when these bones are used as stock for a soup base, the nourishing substances are cooked into the soup, and whoever drinks the soup will benefit from their absorption. This results in stronger bones and kidney system which boosts the circulatory blood flow and improves the immune system. Here is a recipe for a bone-based soup that will strongly boost the immune system and increase overall vitality:   



  • Ox tail  

  • Carrots  

  • Broccoli Flower  

  • Onions  

  • Cabbage  

  • Scallions  

  • Celery  

  • Raw Ginger Slices  



  1. Combine all ingredients into a soup pot.  

  1. Add water and cook for an hour-and-a-half to two hours.  

  1. Add the following a dash of salt or red cooking wine as needed to enhance the taste. 


Note: You might be wondering why there are no quantities indicated for these ingredients. The reason is that you add as needed per your own desired taste. This is typically how soups—and foods in general—are cooked in China.  


Rene Ng, DOM, AP, L.Ac., is a board-certified, licensed Acupuncture Physician and Chinese Herbalist in Sarasota. In 2014, he was voted Sarasota’s “Favorite Acupuncture Physician” for a second year in a row and was also the area’s “Favorite Anti-Aging Practitioner.” Ng can be reached at 941-773-5156 or via email: In addition, Ng will be presenting a seminar on Chinese Food Therapy at the Four Pillars Wellness Center in Lakewood Ranch on April 30, 7 p.m. Seating is limited, so make reservations early, and call 941-373-3955 to sign up.  

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