Chicken soup is an effective remedy for the respiratory tract

Chicken soup, that comforting delicacy that has been enjoyed in homes around the world for centuries, not only warms the body, but it could also have real benefits for our health. Although it is not an absolute cure for colds and flu, science supports its effectiveness in relieving symptoms and shortening the duration of these respiratory infections.

Chicken Soup

Why is chicken soup so popular?

Chicken soup is a combination of flavorful ingredients: hot broth, tender chicken, vegetables and noodles. Its distinctive flavor comes from “umami”, the fifth category of taste sensations.

The amino acid glutamate, present in umami-flavored foods, contributes to this “meaty” flavor. When we are sick, we often lose our appetite due to the body’s inflammatory response. However, the umami flavor of chicken soup can stimulate hunger and help you get the nutrients needed for recovery.

The custom of preparing chicken soup for a sick loved one has endured throughout the centuries, spreading throughout the world as a comforting and therapeutic gesture.

Today, this practice is an integral part of the culinary traditions of almost all cultures. In the United States, for example, it is common to prepare it with vegetables and noodles, but each region and culture has its own variant of this medicinal recipe.

The history of this soup as a therapy dates back to 60 AD, linked to Pedanius Dioscorides, a renowned military surgeon who served under the reign of the Roman Emperor Nero. His influential five-volume medical encyclopedia was a reference for early healers for more than a millennium.

Benefits it brings

In addition to its historical value, chicken soup is also already supported by modern science. It is considered an easy-to-digest comfort food, packed with nutrients that can help strengthen the immune system and provide relief during illness.

Researchers have analyzed its main components of traditional chicken soup and discovered that it has anti-inflammatory properties. These properties can relieve symptoms and shorten upper respiratory tract infections, such as colds and flu. The zinc and iron present in the soup also contribute to a healthy effect.

Different ingredients for chicken soup

Likewise, drinking the hot soup liquid and inhaling its vapors increases the temperature of the nasal and respiratory passages. This helps loosen the thick mucus that often accompanies respiratory illnesses. Compared to hot water alone, chicken soup is more effective for this purpose.

The secret is in its ingredients

Not all varieties of chicken soup offer the same benefits. It is essential to consider the ingredients to understand their true power. That they are fresh and natural are essential for the healing benefits

Canned versions, especially ultra-processed ones, lack key nutrients present in homemade ones. The lack of vegetables and antioxidants in canned versions decreases their nutritional value.

Chicken provides essential protein to fight infections, while vegetables add essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Additionally, the noodles in the American-style version offer easily digestible carbohydrates that provide energy and recovery.

Not only is it a comforting placebo, but it also has scientific basis for its effectiveness. Although it does not replace medical treatments, its consumption can be beneficial during colds and flu.

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