There are some foods that are just better than others. We don’t necessarily mean they’re healthier (although of course, that’s a good thing and you should be paying attention to how healthy or otherwise your diet is), or that they’re cheap – or expensive, depending on what you see as more important – but instead we mean that they fulfill a lot of roles and they help in many ways.
Soup is precisely this kind of food. Sipping steaming hot soups and eating stews will keep you and your family warm and comfortable as we make our way through another cold winter. Soup not only warms you up on a cold night, but it’s also a speedy way to get supper on the table. Soups provide the following five advantages, whether you’re making a broth-based dish or devouring a hearty bowl of beef and cabbage soup.
Good For You
The reality is that soups are good for you, at least for the most part. While certain soups can totally destroy a diet (cream-based types are especially heavy in fat and calories), the majority can help you achieve your daily vegetable intake, which can be difficult, especially if you’re not a big fan of veggies. You can think of soups as a chance to capitalize on the food that’s available at this time of the year (winter vegetables such as carrots, pumpkin, parsnips, and butternut squash will not wilt or go limp when cooked). Plus, if you have vegetables that are ready to go bad, putting them into a soup dish might give them a new life, and you’ll not waste so much food. You can even add frozen vegetables to soup without sacrificing flavor or texture.
Cheap And Easy To Make
Soups and stews don’t need a lot of hands-on time. In reality, if you use a slow cooker or a pressure cooker, you can make a flavorful soup in five minutes and leave the rest to the cooker. If you increase the quantity of liquid and vegetables, you can use less costly items like chicken, fish, and meat to bulk it out. Make it an entire meal by serving it with whole-grain bread and a small salad, if desired.
They’re Great For Freezing
If you want to meal prep lunches or dinners ahead of time, soups and stews are ideal. Make a batch over the weekend and save half in the freezer to enjoy later. A bonus: you’ll have healthy, homemade soup on hand when you’re too busy, sick, or tired to cook.
They Keep You Hydrated
Many people become more dehydrated during the winter than in the summer, strange as that may seem. The fact is, when you’re not feeling hot, you will drink much less – possibly even forgetting to drink altogether until you become truly thirsty (at which point, the problems associated with dehydration have already set in). Soups are an excellent way to remain hydrated and full since they are primarily liquid. Although it’s best to remember to drink water throughout the day no matter what season it is or how much activity you are doing, if you can enjoy a soup, then you’ll certainly be helping yourself.
They Improve Your Immune System
Soups can help you avoid colds and flu, and they’re also a terrific remedy when you’re ill. Most soups are high in anti-inflammatory ingredients. In fact, studies suggest that chicken soup, particularly when loaded with fresh garlic, carrots, celery, and onions, can help avoid the common cold, as these vegetables are all high in immune-boosting compounds. As an added plus, the heated drink soothes a sore throat.