Blog , Health and Wellness

Does Chicken Soup Have Health Benefits?

Posted on Monday, January 8, 2024
by AMAC, D.J. Wilson
bowl of chicken soup with bread

And, also, is it truth or myth that chicken soup can heal illnesses? Read on to learn these answers.

Tasty & nutritious

Chicken soup is not only delicious, but it can be good for you. However, there is some good and bad news.

The good news: Eating chicken soup can deliver some health benefits, especially to those who are sick. Consuming it is particularly helpful in the wintertime when certain illnesses spike.

The bad news: While chicken soup is generally healthy, it is unfortunately not a cure for illnesses.

It’s been around for a long time!

In many places, it’s a regular practice to offer chicken soup to those who are not feeling well. Discover Magazine shares that chicken soup has been a prescribed remedy for respiratory illness since as early as the 12th century.

Soup equals comfort.

When people feel sick, it’s not uncommon to desire foods which give them comfort and provide warmth, such as chicken soup.

Why is soup beneficial in the winter?

Per Hopkins Medicine, cold, flu and other respiratory illnesses are more common in colder months. When people spend more time indoors around others, viruses can spread more easily from person to person. Chicken soup is known to bring some relief to people who are sick.

It’s not a total cure, so how does it help?

Though soup doesn’t cure conditions, it can provide some temporary relief of symptoms associated with the common cold and other illnesses. In other words, it does possess some helpful healing properties.

What can chicken soup do for people?

Chicken soup contains some beneficial ingredients that are healthy. For example, chicken, when added to soup, releases the amino acid known as cysteine. Per Discover Magazine, cysteine thins out mucus in the nose and lungs and can help the body heal. In addition to being a great anti-inflammatory agent for nasal cells, there’s more to know about chicken; it is a solid source of protein that helps weakened muscles. Plus, the soup contains a bounty of healthy vegetables rich in nutrients that work to keep bodies healthy and strong.

About chicken soup veggies  

Carrots, onions, and celery are typically in Chicken soup. Carrots are chock-full of vitamin A, very important for the immune system, vision, and more! Carrots also contain potassium, beta-carotene, and other nutritional elements that render them a healthy food source. Likewise, onions are fabulous for the body, possessing strong antibacterial properties that are beneficial for wellbeing. Celery is rich in fiber and nutrients. Though it has a high-water content, it contains dietary fiber, vitamin K, some vitamin A and C, beta-carotene, flavonoids, phytonutrients, and helpful antioxidants which work to protect cells, blood vessels, and organs.

Watch out!

Let’s recap. Does chicken soup have health benefits? Yes – but wait! This answer is incomplete without mentioning that healthful ingredients are key!

Store bought or homemade chicken soup, what’s better?

Generally, homemade (or semi-homemade) soups are likely healthier than store-bought brands because home cooks can control the ingredients. Note that some store-bought products as well as broths and stocks may contain high salt. Plus, some canned soups may contain undesirable additives. Do your homework. For example, if you’re watching your salt intake, it’s particularly important to understand the amount of sodium in each serving. This information can be easily obtained by reading the nutrition facts label on the product’s packaging.  

Note: This article is purely informational and is not intended as a medical resource or substitute for medical advice. As always, address questions related to diet and health with a medical professional.

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