This post about the top five health benefits of soup is sponsored by Boulder Organic Foods. All opinions are my own.
I’m a homebody. I love being home and would choose a night in over any party in the world.
In fact, my dream night has me in my pajamas, curled up on the couch with a blanket (along with my dog snuggly planted at my side), a good Netflix series, and a bowl of warm soup.
When that homebody in me surfaces, I always make sure I have soup on hand.
I’m not talking about canned soups that are loaded with chemicals, preservatives and sodium. I’m talking about real soup like the ones Boulder Organic makes that are always organic, always gluten-free, and always non-GMO. These soups are made in small batches using farm-fresh ingredients only. No can opener required.
So today’s post is about all the good things homemade soup has to offer. And if you don’t mind indulging me, I’d love to introduce you to a few of my favorite Boulder Organic soup varieties, along the way.
Top 5 Health Benefits of Soup
Soup has so many benefits. It was hard to narrow it down to the top five benefits, but somehow I managed – lol! The truth is that a fresh-made soup brings with it many magical powers. It can front-load your body with essential nutrients, it can soothe cold and flu symptoms, and of course, it can help you kick-starting weight loss.
So indulge me by allowing me to share with you what I believe to be some of the best health benefits of soup.
Soup Benefit #1: Hydrate Your Body
Water is essential to human life. While you can survive two months without food, without water survivability is only seven days, if that. In fact, 60 percent of the human body is made of water.
As you can imagine, the health benefits of staying well hydrated are many. They range from helping your skin shine to regulating your energy, helping you rid of toxins (flushing out your kidneys) and even regulating your mood.
Unfortunately, many Americans do not consume enough fluids and are chronically dehydrated.
Of course you should get the majority of your fluids from good old fashioned zero-calorie water. However, a good soup can contribute to ensuring your body is well hydrated, too.
When choosing a good, hydrating soup, look for broth-based soups. I also recommend avoiding canned soups that are notoriously loaded with sodium and may actually dehydrate you. Either make your own soup or purchase a high-quality soup that uses salt as a seasoning vs. preservative. Boulder Organic soups are lower in sodium and offer a tasty way to get those essential fluids your body needs to thrive.
Soup Benefit #2: Soothe Digestion
People with celiac disease (me) have compromised digestive systems. That’s because gluten damages the lining of a celiac’s small intestine. For lack of a better word, most people with celiac disease have “broken” digestive systems.
While I have put in a lot of hard work to repair my intestinal lining, I know that nurturing my digestive health is and will always be an ongoing job.
Soup offers such a tasty way enjoy nutrient-dense foods without having to make my digestive system work in overdrive. Think of it this way… when you break a leg, you stay off that leg until it heals, right? So apply that logic to your digestive system; if you have a “broken” gut, if you can “stay off” of it, it may just heal faster. Most of us eat all day long with little regard to how overwhelming it must be to our digestive systems to constantly have to be at work.
I personally love a good vegetable-based soup, like a butternut squash or tomato soup. These soups are loaded with nutrients that are blended and therefore much easier for my body to digest.
If you’d like to give your overtaxed digestive system a rest, even just every so often, I recommend enjoying a soothing soup each day in lieu of a meal.
Soup Benefit #3: Boost Nutrient Consumption
While soup helps you rest your digestive system, it’s also good at flooding your body with easily absorbable nutrients. If your body is in need of more nutrient-density (like most Americans), then flooding it with a vegetable-based soup will make your immune system happy.
I like to compare soup to juicing. When you juice your vegetables, about 99 percent of nutrients are absorbed in your body within the first 20 minutes of consumption. That’s insane! However, if you were to chew those same vegetables, you’d only absorb about 40 percent of those nutrients and you’d have to do a lot of digestive work to break down all that fibrous food.
While soups and juices are not the same thing (blended soups are heated and the fiber is intact while juices are typically cold pressed with the fiber removed), you can still feel confident flooding your body with easily digestible nutrients from soup. The cooking and blending process has already “predigested” the vegetables for you, making it easier for your body to assimilate the nutrients properly.
Soup Benefit #4: Soothe Cold and Flu Symptoms
I like to jokingly call chicken soup “penicillin” – however, there’s some truth behind that claim. In fact, there are several scientific studies demonstrating the medicinal value of chicken soup.
One study even examined how chicken soup impacted the flow of air and mucus in the nasal cavity. Researchers found that the chicken soup did a better job than hot water in increasing the movement of nasal mucus, providing welcome relief to cold sufferers.
While no chicken soup study is conclusive, the one thing that’s certain is that there is something oh-so-comforting about sipping on chicken soup when you’re under the weather. The taste of that salty broth and the influx of essential vitamins and minerals offer abundant relief when it comes to soothing those nasty cold and flu symptoms.
Soup Benefit #5: Kickstart Weight Loss
Many people don’t realize the power of soup in kick-starting weight loss, but it definitely works and is worth a try if you’re struggling to shed a few unwanted pounds.
Several studies support this theory too. In one study, for example, researchers found people who regularly consume soup are less likely to be overweight. This might be because we slowly sip a warm soup, which forces us to mindfully eat and gives us the time to recognize our body’s signs of fullness.
The trick to using soup as a weight loss kickstarter is to swap a full-on meal with a hearty vegetable- or broth-based soup (avoiding heavy, creamy soups altogether). Slowly sip your soup and allow your body time to soak in all the nutrients and alert you when it’s full. Then, of course, stop eating.
Want Soup Without the Fuss of Making It?
Boulder Organic makes some incredibly tasty and healthy from-scratch soups to help you meet your healthy-living needs, whether you’re simply soothing cold symptoms or you’re looking to kickstart weight loss. You can learn more about Boulder Organic and its mission to “make soup better” online at BoulderOrganicFoods.com.
Be sure to look for Boulder Organic soups in the fresh Deli Fridge aisle of your grocery store.